Gardner-Webb University Top Questions

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Rebekah

If I could go back in time and give my high-school self advice about college life, I would tell myself to get out and meet people! One of the biggest mistakes I have made as a college freshmen is shying away from meeting new people. Don't get me wrong, I've made some wonderful friends, but they are mostly upper-classmen, and when they graduate I will hardly know anyone in my class. I would tell myself that in the first week that I am there, and the school puts on tons of activities for the freshmen, that I should try to meet as many people as possible. That way, when I start my classes I would see some familiar faces, and I wouldn't be as uncomfortable in the first few weeks. The last thing I would tell myself is to meet the other girls who live in my dorm building. Even just leaving my dorm room door open, and as people walk by ask them how they are, or invite them in. I think if I knew this before starting college, I would have been more comfortable in the first few weeks.

Sarah

If I could go back in time to when I was a high school senior I would give myself advice about how to better prepare myself for the tough transition of becoming a college student. The biggest advice I could give myself would be learning how to study. High school classes and topics always came easy to me and I never really had to study to succeed. When I came to college I found that the classes are more of a challenge and studying was going to become a necessity. Basically, the advice I would give myself would be to study no matter if you feel the need to or not to better learn how to study for college classes and tests.

haley

If I could go back and talk to myself as a senior, I would personally advise my self not freak out as much as I did once coming here I was afraid of all the change that was going to happen to me. To be more prepared of the idea of being on my own. I am now the only one to take care of myself. I alone have to handle every situation that comes my way. One of the biggest things I could advise myself as a senior is to not be so shy during college, because I now am making my way in the world and it wouldn't be right to give up the oppurtunities of college, for example making friends that will last a life time, all because I was to shy to say one word.

Jasmine

I would tell myself several things. Apply yourself to your studies. Don't let anyone tell you can't do this. It may be junior college but it's NOT putting you behind in anyway. PAY ATTENTION! Don’t shoot for the bare minimum. It’s okay to ask questions if you don’t quite understand it. Take all of your hard classes first!! STUDY A LOT! Above all make the most of your education no matter what. Your education is the most valuable thing you will have. It's not as hard as you make it out to be.

Candace

Going back, I would say to myself to be careful with who you choose to be friends and look forward to graduating early, in December, 2012. College is great. People don't try to hurt you and teachers love to help you more than those in high- school. You'll make better friends, who you can trust, and life turns out to be way better. But, those friends in high-school, don't talk to you much once you graduate. You soon start to find out who your true friends are. Stay close to family, as- well. At SCC Beatrice, people seem to understand how hard high- school life was. Most of them had the same or even worse experiences than you did in high- school. Your relationship with your parents get better, and they notice how happier you are at SCC now. They see a difference in your attitude, and you see your future is much better now. You start to focus more on school than you ever did before. You have come a long ways and it all pays off. But don't take this advice for granted. Stay focused and know you'll be happier than ever.

Megan

Entering college, I was most prepared for the educational aspect of the experience. I was ready to get good grades, make an impression on my professors, and strive to be a student that I could be proud of. I was not, however, ready for the emotional and mental impact college would have on me. In my first year alone, I experienced more death and heartbreak than at any other point in my life and while my grades did not suffer, my relationships with my family members did. During this time, I lost my great aunt, two Sunday school teachers, and a fellow classmate within five months of each other and my relationship with my brother fell apart. Looking back, I would tell my high school self, to be prepared to be strong through everything and to keep enduring through the hardships. Just seeing myself become a stronger person would make everything worth it. I would also tell myself to not ignore the little pieces of good that happen throughout the day. Sometimes, they can become the only things that help you through.

Jill

Don't get to wrapped up worrying about the first week away from home. Everyone is trying to make new friends and you will be easily find others you get along with.

Melissa

The advice I would give to myself would be to study more and apply myself to school instead of looking at my senior year as a fun time. I would not have dropped my accelerated classes to make it "easy" on myself. I would have thought more about going to college and not relyed on sports to carry me into adulthood.

Jennifer

If I could go back in time and talk to me in high school there are many pieces of advice that I would give me. I have learned a lot about myself discipline and study habits. I would tell me that I need to study and apply myself more to my school work. When you try to slide by and do the minimum it will catch up to you. You need to understand that your social life is not the most important thing. Your friends will still be there when your school work is done. I would also say that you will have many opportunities to take chances, go for it. Hold nothing back and embrace change do not run from it. It is going to happen one way or another and it is best to face it head on.

Dawn

I would say keep doing what your doing. Just dont get as frustrated and mad as you usually do

Sarah

I would advise myself to be more social in high school and to participate in more extracurricular activities. My freshman year in college was very hard to make the transition because I am a very shy person and focus more on academics than social affairs. College is still school oriented but being social and taking part in student activities is very important to obtain the optimum experience of college. As a prospective teacher, I must resemble the perfect role model and trying my best in school is very important, but it is also important to show students that they can make a difference in the world and succeed academically. I would definitely advise myself to take advantage of opportunities in my community that could help those who have less and make a difference in their lives. Although I did do some volunteer work in high school, I would advise myself to reach out and enrich my life by enriching the lives of others. Looking back, I realize that I focused only on academics instead of the overall characteristics in which colleges are looking for and thus was lacking in preparedness for college life.

Kira

The first thing I would tell myself is to take as many college classes while they were offered for free. Second I would inform the younger me that my parents are older and wiser in the aspect of life and living. Instead of taking the extra money for scholarships and spending it on any and everything you see is not the smart thing to do. Budget, budget, budget, it can not be stressed enough. What needs to be done is take the extra money that is given to you the first year needs to be put into a savings account after all bills are paid. The key is try and collect the least amount of debt in loans while in college. I was blessed enough to have college paid through my Associates degree. However, I would warn myself that finianical aid does not cover all school, only through your Batchlors. The last thing I would tell myself is to go ahead and put the time and effort in applying to scholarships and always pray/turn to God. For if you are willing to do the work he will provide for your needs.

kaitlyn

I would go back and tell myself to find and fill out all of the scholarships possible and not expect the money for college to just appear. I would also tell myself to not focus on having a boyfriend going into college because the first year is a time of discovering who you are and what you want out of life. I feel like this aspect is an important thing to discover on your own. Lastly, I would tell myself not to try and control everything in life that happens, and go with the flow a bit more. Some things in life just have to happen and things have a way of working out no matter what it is. Things happen for a reason and if my high school self had a better understanding of that, she would have had an easier transition into college.

Jessica

The best advice I can give you is plug-in to the community around you. People are what make the difference in getting a job and in real life.

Alexandria

Going back in time I would make sure that I took quizzes and met with advisors to figure out if my major was something I could see in the future. I would then tour each school that was in my top five choices. When I was touring I would find current students and ask them honestly what they thought about the school instead of only asking my tour guide. I would find people currently going to the school that looked like they would have similar interest as myself and ask them important questions such as; what they do on the weekends, if they could start from the beginning would they go to the same college, how is the food, and how is the housing. When touring the college I would then ask about the surrounding area and what the students do in their spare time. I would then see how the classroom setting was. After finding out all of these questions I would make a pro and con list to my top five colleges along with pricing and choose which college suited my personal taste. However, it is key to talk to students that attend the college currently.

Remington

If I could go back in time and talk to myself, I would shake myself by the shoulders and snap my fingers until I get the past Tiffany’s attention completely. I would then remind her of the upcoming college decisions and everything they look for on the hopeful student’s application. I would remind her of the volunteering and work experience they look for. I would kick her in the pants for her to finish the Girl Scout Gold Award. Colleges do look for excelling academics, but they also look for students that will excel in social situations. They want students that can speak with others effectively, that have leadership skills, not a student that will hole up in their books, never to be seen until graduation. I would tell her that she needs to start working on scholarships now. They don’t just get handed to you. If I could talk to my past self, I would tell her to think of my future.

Christopher

If I could journey back in time and speak to my high school self, I would tell him that every passing moment in a chance to turn it all around, and that anything is possible as long as you are brave enough to take that first step forward. I held back in high school, and regretably did not pursure AP classes. My future was planned out already in my junior year, I was going into the military. Even during my time in the service, I still held back and did not take advantage of the free college courses offered. I was afraid, but I did not know it then. Less than a year ago, I did not think I could pursure and succeed in an astrophysics degree. A field of study that brings me the most excitement out of any other subject in school. I do believe now, and I am succeeding. Better late than never, like some. Also, I would have to say, "Katie does like you, in case you were wondering. Why don't you ask her out? What's the worse that could happen? Follow your heart, it's usually right."

Caitlyn

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself to read as many books as I could to prepare for college, because there is so much reading in college. I would also tell myself to learn the best study methods for tests, because the tests are a lot harder in college. A final thing I would tell myself would be to start applying for as many scholarships as I can find to apply for, because college is really expensive, and it is good to start applying for them early so you will not be so far behind on paying for school. I do not want to have to postpone fulfilling my dream of teaching deaf students overseas simply because I do not have the money to pay off my school. This is the reason why the number one thing that I would definitely tell myself is to start applying for scholarships early.

Caitlin

If I could go back in time, I would give myself the most important piece of advice I know: learn how to manage your time. In college, you have numerous freedoms that weren't available in high school. You can now spend your time however you choose. It is important though not to spend this time ignoring your homework, essays that might be due, or procrastinating. Create a schedule where you spend equal amounts of time working on schoolwork and having fun.

JENNIFER

I would have told myself to go! I have always regretted not furthering my education. After getting laid off from my job last year I decided to make my dream come true. I was a tough decision to make, but once I started I adjusted well and actually enjoy going to all my classes.

Brianna

I am actually a high school senior now, I am attending college as a post secondary student. If I were to talk to someone from my high school, I would tell them that college life helps you be yourself. A high school environment is hard when you feel judged by everything you do. In college, you are you, and you are often not judged and placed into a little box. The teachers treat you as an adult, so act like one. Be responsible for yourself and take the time to care about your homework and your other responsiblities.

Melissa

Take risks, they are well worth it. The feeling of accomplishment you will gain from continuing your education is amazing.

Tameka

I would advise myself to continue my education. I would tell myself don't take a break from school. One semester turns into a couple of years. I would tell myself that if I work hard and apply myself I will succeed at all I can do. I would volunteer more. I would give back to the community. I tell me to apply to college out of state. I would tell me to explore the world. Go out and experience all that theirs is to see. Learn several foreign languages. Constant learning is really the key to being production in today’s society. I would advise take classes or obtain money management skills. I would remond me take my voice can be heard. And to vote locally and on a national level.

melisa

The advice I would let myself that is more finincal aid help than just what is presented to us. I would also, take more time to look into what wach college offers and the resources they have on campus.

Jonathan

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would tell myself to keep up my good grades and make sure to always stay focused on my goals to be successful in life. I will tell myself not to focus so much on the money and tuition cost because tthere are ways to work with that and Career Services is there for your benefit. I would also let myself know that as long as you know you did your best you can't beat yourself up if you didn't make a perfect grade. As long as you stay focused on having a bright future you won't ever regret the time you put into your education.

Ashley

The advice I would give myself would be try harder and never give up on your dream.

Nicole

I would try to study harder and get more scholarship money. The transition from high school to college in studying is a lot harder and you have to be more focused. I would be more involved in the community as well as school activities.

Kenya

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would tell myself to review all options. I would tell myself to look into public universities instead of private universities. I would tell myself to apply for scholarships and grants and exhaust all possibilities before taking out loans. And most importantly I would tell myself to listen to your heart and what it is you want out of life and follow your dreams and goals and not everybody else’s.

Christina

Looking back at myself as a high school senior, I can definitely say that I was naive to what being a college student actually entailed. However, I would assure myself that even though at times it may seem stressful and overwhelming, it is not impossible. I would also assure myself that all the hard work and dedication is worth the outcome of bettering and putting myself one step ahead of all the rest. That I will not only be gaining book knowledge, but the wisdom gained by transitioning myself from a high school student into a mature adult.

Brianna

I would give myself a chance to look for colleges and scholarships before trying to have fun like during my junior year I should have but it was senior, so basically focus on what college I want to go to. I would decide where its going to be at what majors thte have to offer and if they allow work study and many other fun things to do around campus. I would tell myself don't try to focus on guys focus on my school work and my plans to gradute from college with being on the dean's list.

Andrew

I would do anything possible to live off the college campus. Online programs are superb for me.

Tyler

If I could go back in the advice I would give myself would be to not take leaving home for granted. There are many different reasons why you will regret it. You will definitely miss the home cooked meals. Some colleges have good food; others don’t have such good food. Having to do laundry alone isn’t too much fun either. Mom usually did your laundry at home; now it could take HOURS. Take as little as you can with you to college, but enough that you have what you need. Don’t over pack your room or you won’t have room to move about your room. Don’t take high school being so easy for granted and think that college test will be just as easy. College courses require a lot more time and work than high school. Another aspect that I would take into consideration on advice would be to get connected in a social group as soon as possible. Going through college is not easy. Being able to turn to my friends has taken a lot of weight off my back as I would have if I was riding the college train solo.

Kandice

When I started college, I really wasn't sure what I wanted to do with my life. I only knew that I wanted to use my life experiences to help other people. My teachers and advisors have really helped me research areas I am interested in. They are so helpful and knowledgable. I know now that I want to obtain my masters degree and pursue a career in school counseling. I want to do for other kids, what my advisors did for me. I want to offer them a chance to explore the possibilities of life. Everyone expects you to know your career path when you are in 8th grade, I want to be there to show students what jobs their talents would be most useful in. I want to be someone that can help them make the right decisions and take the right classes. I want to be able to tell them about clubs and activites that will further their plans. These are all the things that Gardner Webb offered me, and I am so thankful. I can't wait to give that to someone else!

Catherine

Wow, what a question. I'd probably have to say that I've gained first and foremost much independence. I've had to learn to do a lot of things on my own and with that has come a development of my own opinions and ideas on matters of life. As with all college students, I have gotten the true freedom of choice and expression all of which have been a great addition. I value all that college has to offer, the educational opportunity to better one's future along with that new found independence and "leap from the nest". It's been a great experience for me thus far and can only hope that it continues to get better.

Cordelia

My college experience has been very challenging. I have learned many things over the years such as being open to many ideas. My life has become more diversified over the years. I have formed great relationships with diffrent backgrounds and racial groups that have taught me many things. I have learned that learning is essential for life and that is is so rewarding to excell with great expectations. My college experience has allowed me to continue learning throughout life. It has been valuable to attend college to know that one day I will begin a professional carreer. It has also been valuable to attend to bee able study with people that really cares!!

Grace

I have gotten alot out of my college experience. Stuff like freedom and the tatse of the real world. I have also gotten a feel of independance and just how to be on my own. It has been very valuble to attend because i personally needed to beable to be on my own for a while. It also gives a person a sice of acomplishment when they are able to choose to go eat, or when they take that first load of laundry to the washers and they actually come out clean. I think that it is a great experience in life and Gardner-Webb has tried to make it the best for thier students.

Candace

My college experience so far has given me a great deal of self confidence. I dropped out of high school in the tenth grade, and I got pregnant when I was 20 years old. This helped me realized how important an education is, but I was really afraid that I would fail the GED exam, so I procrastinated for a few years; however, I finally gained the courage to take the test in the summer of 2009, and I passed it with flying colors. As soon as I knew I passed the test, I enrolled at Calhoun Community College. I have made straight A's since the beginning, and this May I will graduate and transfer to The University of Alabama in Huntsville. College has helped me realize that I can do anything I set my mind to. It has showed me that it is never too late to get your education, and that you should never give up on yourself. Ever since I started going to college, I have felt like I have a new purpose in life: not only am I teaching my child about life, I am also a student of life.

Katherine

I have learned that life is what you make it. Sometimes it throws you curve balls, but what you do with those curve balls sharpens who you are and can determine your future. My education here has required me to push myself to the absolute limit not only academically, but physically and spiritually as well. I have learned that being an athlete is not everything, and that sometimes I have to make decisions that take me down a completely different path in order to succeed to my absolute potential. I have learned that making A's is also not everything as long as I do my very best, and that I should always be proud of who I am, because I have led a very successful life so far and I know that I will continue to do so. This college experience has taught me to do things out of my comfort zone, especially when I think that it will push me to my limit, because I always find more out about myself that I did not know before. First and foremost, I have learned be thankful and appreciate everything that happens in life, because everything happens for a reason.

Olivia

I have learned a lot about who I am as a person and what I believe in. I am studying to be an ESL teacher, so I have also learned how to properly and adequately educate students in the public school system. Every time I step into a classroom to teach or observe, I love it more and more, and I am convinced that I want to make a difference in the lives of students for the rest of my life. It has also been valuable to me because I have made many close friends and met the love of my life. I have received much support from professors and counselors here, who have helped me blossom into a scholar and future educator. I am eternally grateful for the opportunity that I have had to go to college. I plan to go on to graduate school after I graduate from Gardner-Webb in May 2012.

Anna

I am originally from Pennsylvania so being in North Carolina for college is taking a toll on me. It's hard because I'm away from my parents and most of my family and friends. I had to learn how to adapt to college life such as getting up on my own and managing my whole day how I wanted to manage it. I'm usually a shy person, but I made a few friends because I opened up and talked to new people. I talk to a lot more people now at college and around the neighborhood. Not only with friends, but students get great relationships with their professors. The classes are small, mostly 30 people, so the professors know you by name. It's more on a personal level and that's great for in the future if I need a reference for a job.

Bryan

I have learned how to live on my own, manage my time wisely and, for the first time, I have learned how to study successfully. I have met many people who have helped me through my first semester of college and I have learned a lot from them. After a rough transition, I am happy and successful at Gardner-Webb University and I am looking forward to completing my 4 years there. My music is important to me and I feel this university has given me every opportunity to grow in my musical ablities.

Dusty

I would tell myself to grow up a little quicker. The transition to college life is not as easy as I assumed it would be. With classes arranged as they are all throughout the day, and either on Monday/Wednesday/Friday or Tuesday/Thursday, it is a lot harder to keep organized and up to date on required work. Responsibility is the number one trait that a student going to college needs to be sure that he/she has worked on and can rely on. Most high school students, including myself, assume that college is the best time of your life with all fun and games and a little bit of school mixed in. This was the wrong attitude for me to have entering college because I was bombarded with a lot of classwork and an unexpected shoulder surgery (which only compounded the amount of work). At this point I did quickly grow up and made a great college career for myself. Luckily, I did not make the mistake of waiting too long to make the necessary adjustments in order to be successful in college. The one piece of advice I would give myself is to become more responsible. Thanks!

Hannah

The transition to college life is larger than any other transition previously experienced. Therefore, don?t take it lightly. Once settled at college, after you wave to your parents goodbye, you are totally on your own. There is no one who is going to stand over your shoulder waking you up in the morning, escorting you to class, or filling your plate up with fruits and vegetables. You could use this new found freedom to rebel and do the opposite of what has always been expected of you. However, this action will get you nowhere in life. Instead, take this opportunity to take the responsibility that you have been granted seriously and show those around you what you are capable of. View this new environment that now surrounds you as an opportunity to meet new people and establish lifelong friendships. No longer do you have the guarantee of coming home each day to your family. Instead, you have to create new friendships that will survive the ups and downs of college life. When it comes down to it, the transition between high school and college is full of opportunity but it will only become what you make of it.

Elizabeth

High school and college are so close in timing, yet are two separate worlds in regards to lifestyle and school workload. I adequately prepared myself for college, yet could have done better. Although I had grown up in a very diverse city, I had not prepared myself to be living in a culture so different than mine. In high school, I had the same-mind set of life from my experiences growing up in Burbank, along with my travels to other places. It would have been wise of me to loosen-up a bit. In college, if you are too focused on school work, you are more likely to be set apart from others and lack of friends. I would remind myself that it is important to incoorporate friends and school, such as I did in my American Sign Language classes. On the other hand, I would remind myself that the academic world of college is a few steps above high school. Although, I already had strict standards, I would be encouraging myself to push past my limits, and take advanced placement courses. I would be a down to earth reminder of zeal and balance in life.

Stephanie

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would advise myself to begin the process of college searching earlier in the year to avoid stress. I would also tell myself to learn how to manage time more wisely, since time management has been a problem of mine for a long time and continues to be; although I do manage to finish assignments on time, it would have been helpful to break that habit before coming to college. Another piece of advice I would give myself would be to learn how to be a bit more independent before coming to school; college tends to be that period of transition between adolescence and adulthood, where one learns to be more independent. The transition to college may have been a bit easier if I had learned to be more independent before I left home. I would also tell myself not to worry so much about leaving my friends and family back home, because I have made such wonderful friends here at school.

DeAnna

I would tell myself to start looking at schools, start applying to schools, and step up. Take things seriously, this is an exciting time in life, so don't waste it. The transition is akward, but that will pass, you'll learn to stand up for yourself, take charge, and even make a friend or two in the process. I promise, it seems overwhelming right now, but you won't regret it. It's something that you will be able to be proud of later down the road. The choices you make and the friends you make will effect you for the rest of your life, it's a scary thing. However, it will all be OK in the end. Just sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride of life. Don't rush this time by, take it in for what it's worth.

Brooke

If I could go back in time and give myself some college advice, I would tell myself to not be so shy and just be myself. Open up to people, approach others, and make new friends. Also, focus on school work because it is easier to enjoy college when you are getting good grades and keeping up your GPA. Get your work done early so you can spend time with friends and also not stress all night about a project that you haven't worked on all month and is now due the next day. If you need help, ask; professors love it when students have questions, it shows they're doing the work. When you can, get involved in school activities, you make quick friends and it looks great on a resume. I also feel that it is important that you are comfortable with where you are, and that you are enjoying your college experience because you only get this kind of experience once in your life. Get off campus sometimes and explore the world when you're not doing homework. Work hard, but have fun, and don't be afraid to be yourself!

Brittany

If I was given the oppporunity to go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senoir, I would be sure to tell myself to calm down! College seems very scary; total responsibility, new people, new professors, a new home, but it's a great experience and everything falls into place. You learn responsibility and become an adult who is respected and looked up to. You meet new people and learn how diverse and amazing the world can be. You have new professors who challenge your ideas and traditions, making you well-rounded citizen. You have a new home filled with new people who love and support you, filled with excitement and adventure. I'd be sure to inform my high school counterpart that college is not something to fear but something to embrace! (And start packing for now!)

Ashley

If i could go back in time and give myself advice about college and making the transition I would make myself work on tie management and meeting new people before going to school. When I came to college I did not know uch about my roommates so I wish i had known them better and met them before school started. Managing my time with school and social life was difficult. Knowing that I had no parents on my back about test and studying gave me more freedom but I wish now that I had my parents reminding me what I needed to get done. So advising myself to start managing time better with friends and school along with learning to meet people easier would be two major things I would advise.

Kailey

There's lot's of advice I can give. Make sure you take the professors seriously and do not expect them to baby you or "hold your hand". Professors will not chek up on assignments and readings and you're on your own so you need to be prepared for the responsability school will hold. Also, going out and partying are NOT a top priority. It may seem like the typical life of a college student but it can and WILL effect your grades if you go out to much and do not spend time studying. It takes twice, if not three times as much effort to get an A in college than it does in High School. Last but not least, get involved as soon as possible. Do not wait to get settled in because by then you will be too far in to want to get involved. You can always drop an activity if it becomes too much for you but you may not always be able to join in whenever you choose. College is your full time job so dont play around and appreciate the education that's being given to you. It truly is a gift.

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