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Ivy Tech Community College

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

Time to have the talk. *Portal opens. Tom2 appears infront of Tom1's eyes* Tom1: "No. Way." Tom2: "Yup, definitely happenin'." Tom1: "Assuming you're future me. You came here to selfishly benefit yourself in the future, rather than fixing real world problems." Tom2: "Well, mom tried to make me do something nice, but I just ended up causing world war four" Tom1: "Classi- wait, four?!" Tom2: "Not important. Our conversation's restricted to a hundred-seventy-three words. After that? The end. Your silence? Basically imperative. Not mine-you, but like, you." Tom1: "Okay wait, so -" Tom2: "tut-tut-shh" *intense pause* "Alright, eighty-seven words left?! Challenge accepted! Hey! Past me! Get your act together! You gotta make your senior year filled with total exuberance, so you're feelin' good for college! What are you wearing?! Dammit! Why did I look like as if Bruno Mars and Taylor Lautner had a bady?! Listen, new wardrobe, be more social, study, drop the girl, IvyTech freshman year, transfer to a university after, then you'll be fine. Oh an- " Tom1: Wait! That's already my plan!" Tom2: *laughs* "I know. I just really wanted to go back in ti-" Fin.

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The advice that I would give my high school self, would be to not give up before starting the college experience. When I was in high school, I had the chance to enter the Groups Program at Indiana University, which is a program for first generation college bound students. I attended the weekend college visit at IU and realized that I was academically unprepared and too scared to enter the program. I didn’t talk to anyone about how I felt, nor did I reach out to my guidance counselor, who was the person that recommended me to the program. Had I not given into my insecurities and addressed my concerns to my guidance counselor or someone involved in the program, I would have had a different college experience and possibly, a different life. I later found out that I was more prepared for the rigors of the college experience than I realized. Also, I found out that the courses that I didn’t have, could have been rectified, by taking remedial courses. Remember to always tap into the resources available, such as advisors, student mentors, instructors, and even graduates, when faced with problems. Never let insecurities kill your opportunities!

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For many years, I have been told that time is precious. That it is important to make every second count before it runs out. As you get older, you look to the past and reflect on decisions made. Even regret dreams that were never followed through. For many, the realization of losing the opportunities they once grasped onto is severely depressing. What I have learned, is that time does not matter. It will continue at the same speed whether you are paying attention or not. The importance has lied within HOW; not the WHEN I chose to live my life. And equally, how I have honored time by making rational decisions. Failure maybe the key to learning, but it is not a requirement. There is no need to feel rushed into making a decision that could ulitimately be the wrong one. College has been a time for self-discovery and improvement. It has given me the opportunity to see myself as a whole and independent person. My best advice to give myself is to remember to breathe. When life seems overwhelming; take a step back to remember what you're working towards.

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Honestly, I stood staring at myself in the mirror, putting on those last final touches and adjusting my cap and gown. My mother called and I looked away, just for a minute. Blink...from cap and gown to wedding gown. Blink. Blink. I was walking around campus, rocking my baby bump, crashing classes and buying expensive text books. Third blinks a charm...baby two, three and four. A class here, a class there. Thank God, no one is ever too old for school. I've gone from manual class crashing to on-line wait lists. Hell, I can even take a class from the comfort of my bed. When I glance back, this forty-one year old women is looking at me. Wow! Where had the time gone. She says to me...."start now and try to finish before the respnsibilities of life and career take hold. Transfer only if you must. The process can be mind boggling so, find a mentor who has been to your school and let them guide you. Quarter systems rule and above all...student loans are the devil (in my Waterboy voice), stay away from them if you can".

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The old adage: Hindsight is 20/20. Were I able to go back, I would tell myself this: Firstly, be mentally prepared to be in college. It was such a drastic change from high school. Honestly I was not ready for it. I would advise to take more campus tours and talk with current students to get a better idea of what college life was realy like. Second: Take time off before going, even if it is only a semester. Had I advised my senior self that, I might not have wasted the first year on partying and a social life. New found freedom and a full course load were too much to handle all at once. Third: Don't overload your courses. My first semester I was enrolled in 17 credit hours; my second semester was just as hard with 16 hours. As a freshman, all those factors combined were a disaster waiting to happen. My advice? Do your research, take time to find yourself before you go, start with 12-15 credits at the most, and lastly, know that college is going to be the hardest but most rewarding experience in your life if you are prepared.

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If I were to go back to my senior year I would tell myself that things will get better, and that you are strong enough to make it through working those late nights as well as studying. I would tell myself that senioritis is not a real thing, and that I need to stop procrastinating on your studies. Also I would explain that community college is a great way to go for your first few years, economically speaking. I would warn myself that you need to keep my head up and continue to focus on studies. The transition between High School and College was easy for you, is what I would say, and it is not much different form what you are already doing. The only thing that I could possibly warn you about is parties. Stay away from them. If you actually listen to me you will save yourself several nights of tears, pain and worry. Please, do not go to parties. Just because I know you probably will anyways, dont set down your drink. Dont let men bring you drinks. They may not be as sweet as you think. Please, dont go to parties.

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I never made it to become a senior in high school . I dropped out in the eleventh grade. I later recieved my GED as an adult with five children on board in 2000 and never really thought I would be able to attend college. I thought only those with high school diplomas could attend , imagine the joy I felt when I was excepted! So, in this chance metting I want to say. I am your future and just because you are smart now it doesn't mean you have all the answers. I was wrong, stay in school. Your friends will lead you astray, do not listen. Take what your parents; teachers say more seriously they're only there to help you succeed. Make books and the education you can receive from them your first priorty. You will have plenty of time for fun later. There are no rewrites or retakes in college, Just like there are no do overs in life. Jobs are harder to come by in the future with very little to no education and, going to college will be the only answer to securing your goals . Plus, college is a lot harder at 39.

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If I were to talk to myself as a high school senior I would tell myself to ask for help, talk to a counselor and stop being afraid to ask questions. Asking questions is probably the most important thing you can do. I had no idea how to apply, when to apply, or how I was going to pay for college. You have the ability to go and talk to a counselor and she will answer all the questions you have about college, ideal places for you to apply, and financial aid. Also you need to take AP classes or dually enroll in community college class. If you are dually enrolled in community college, your high school will pay for your classes. That is free money and nothing is better than that. You also have to study the material right after you learn it. It makes the exams a lot easier and you do not have to have an all night cramming session the night before the exam. Here are three key study devices that you need to know, that will benefit you in your college life studying habits; copious amounts of notes, flash cards and repetition.

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That is a tough question, since I had no motivation for anything back then. I would probably say what I could to spark my interest in something. I went to Post Secondary Schoold for Welding, but at the time I didn't have much interest in it either. Along with that, I would offer my younger self a group of firends who were interested in learning things rather than surrounding myself with people who were unmotivated and lacking any kind of productive interests. As much time as I might have to talk to my younger self, I doubt I could have broken through my stuborn defenses. What I would be more likely to accomplish is to introduce a better enviroment in which I could have found potential in myself. If this would have happened back then, I may have been able to see all the I could be rather than all that I currently wasn't. With this diferent view of things I would have found an interest in what ever class I may find myself in, very much like I'm able to do right now, only earlier in my life.

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Through my journey in life and as it continues I have seen a major change in the way the world was and the way it is today. Our needs for today?s world require a two income family. Knowing that the only way to make it in the remainder of my life is for me to get a higher education. My Journey in life has taught me to focus my attention on my family and how precious life is. How important it is to get a good education. I have stressed to my girls that you should have two or more majors in college. You should enjoy what you have when you have it; because it can change right in front of your eyes. The girls and I have experienced this first hand, seeing their dad loose his job. How our life turned upside down. We are blessed that my husband has found temporary work, but as we all know this too shall come to an end. We pray that God will continue to provide help with our financial needs. Don't wait until your world turns upside down. Stay in school reach for the ski and fufill your dreams.

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