Attending college and leaving home can be one of the scariest things a young person has to do in their life. With the uncertainty of what lies ahead in life, attending college can also be very stressful. Although things may somtimes start out scary, attending college at Kent State University has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. Attending college has taught me to be self relient, independent, and has made me become a mature young adult. It has also taught me to be my own person, and to be more accepting of the differences of those who surround me. Attending college has also made me realize what is most important to me in life, such as my family and my future, and has helped me create a strong set morals and values to live by. I have met so many wonderful people while attending college, and certainly some life long friends. Every day I become a more well rounded individual, and the person that I always hoped I would be some day. My experience in college is one that I will never forget, and an experience that has made me into the good person I am today.
When finding the right college, it's extremely important to stay true to yourself. Students shouldn't be afraid to follow their dreams, and parents should help them accomplish them as much as possible. Sometimes it's hard to let go of what's comfortable and familiar. However, I've found out personally that if you don't reach for what you really want you either start over for it or become incredibly unhappy with life. It's an awful feeling to wake up every morning thinking "if only" or "I can't face today". Find what's right for you and try to compromise it with what's possible. Even though your dream school is unavailable financially or for other reasons, it doesn't mean you cannot get the same outcome with another. There's so much a school you've never even thought of before can provide. What's important is getting the degree you need and want. Then, it's about the experience and finances. A degree and finances are what determine your future, while an experience can last a lifetime as well. In the end, just be happy with yourself. Choose wisely and without regrets.
Looking back at what my thoughts towards college used to be I have to admit I was completely wrong. For the longest time I pictured college as what movies had made it seem. A sorority and fraternity filled atmosphere where students were more concerned about who’s dating who and what party is on tonight’s agenda. Seeing as how I ended up at a smaller community college to start off my college experience I came to realize it was completely different from what I imagined. People cared so much about grades and keeping a good GPA. The atmosphere was laid back and between passing periods a bit more high paced. If I could of let myself know one important thing is that studying never meant anything until college. Procrastination is your worst enemy, so don't attempt it as much as you did in high school or you'll be in for a rude awakening. You'll feel more accomplished each day you go, all the time you thought you were wasting in high school was really just preparing you for your real education. I would lastly reassure myself this will all pay off, it’s really happening now.
The advice I would give to parents and/or students about finding the right college is to visit as many colleges as possible while classes are in session. This gives the parents a chance to see where the student is going to be spending their time away from home and a chance for the students to see exactly what type of environment they will be participating in to choose the best college possible. During that college visit, make sure the student is aware of the extra activities that are available to them on and off campus that suits them the best, for example here at Kent State University; the recreation center, fraternities and sororities, and student run government positions are just a few of the opportunities available. Also, as stated in a previous question, make sure the student is practicing great time management skills. This will make help the student make the best of their college experience because they will have their coursework complete when it is time to have fun with a student organization on or off campus or to just socialize with classmates and friends.
Senior year for many students is an exciting yet stressful time. It is common for a student to become over whelmed with advice from parents, friends, coaches and teachers. In my transition from high school to college, I had pressure coming from many different coaches. I decided to play softball at a private college in Ohio my freshman year. I listened to those around me more than I listened to myself. I felt as if I had to play a college sport and education was not the top priority, neither was tuition. Today, as a transfer student to Kent State University, would advise myself to first think about what you really want and not those around you. Secondly, to understand this is your life and you can do whatever you want with it so plan accordingly. Third, remember who is paying the bills after college. Also, I would tell myself education lasts forever and there is nothing wrong with challenging yourself with a large course load. College is a time for growth and exploration. Make the most of that time and do not be afraid to step out of the box. Do something different.
After experiencing collegiate life, the advice I would give to my high school self would be to attend a smaller university closer to home. Upon graduation I chose to attend the one of the largest universities in the country 2,000 miles away from the small community where I grew up. It was my hope after graduation that I would be able to escape the unhappy memories of high school by attending a university far from my home. However, I was blissfully unaware of the hardships that I would experience in my new environment. I was naïve to think that I would be able to adapt and find ‘family’ at college. While others flourished among the other thousands of student I struggled to find my place at such a large university. I realize now that in my desperation to fit in I made many mistakes. By being at a smaller university closer to home I would have been able to adapt more easily; avoiding many of the problems I encountered. As I have since transferred to a smaller university closer to home I can tell myself that I did not need to move away to have new positive experiences.
College is meant to prepare for the world's workforce abroad. Whether it be Engineering, the Medical field, Journalism or even the next great NFL superstar. Altough those things are all true. I get so much more from it. College at Kent State University is not just helping prepare me for a great career, but also a great friend, mentor, daughter and overall an adult for the rest of my life. Honestly, I never liked school. I never like the early mornings, the unnecessary homework, all the way up until now. Now I see that, like my mother always says: " There's a reason for the season!". All the things I hated coming up, I understand that it was preparing me for now and college now is preparing me to help build a better tomorrow. Being a Christian, I believe in a better tomorrow, and although God holds it, He gives us the choice to spend it as we please. College is valuable because it's my second chance at becoming the great person I am destine to be. And after all of the childishness of my yesterdays, I can't imaging wasting another tomorrow. Time is of the essence.
Take advantage of living on campus for your first year. Once you move back home to make schooling more affordable, it is harder to stay in touch with the people you have met and be involved in campus activites. Make sure to attend classes no matter how early, you are paying for the professors' time and you need to take advantage of their knowledge. An excellent piece of advice is to major in Medical Technology. Pharmacy is too involved for what you want to do as a career. The med tech major is perfect and you can make it into the clinical with ease if you focus on your school work and study habits now. Also you can manage to double major in Biology and double minor in Psychology and Chemistry if you work hard. It is very rewarding to have all of these experiences. Most importantly just remember to work hard but also have some fun. Enjoy everything you can because before you know it you will be a senior wanting to go back. Lastly, time management is your friend and will help you on your way to a having an enjoyable and very successful college experience.
Jake, I understand that the roady has been filled with gaps and chasms. Somehow you've managed to leap each one with scratches and scars, but none of it has detered you from your passion and your goals. I applaud your commitment both to yourself and your future. Remember that college is not only a method of aquiring your degree, it also demands that you find yourself. That means being confident in who you are, stick to your love of art and design and show the world just how determined you are. All those nights spent scribbling and erasing ideas for your own personal logo, reading about the inner workings of the design industry will mold you into a fierce designer. Living off campus may seem a bit daunting at first but I assure you that the connections will make are geniune and pure. The professors here demand excellence, so you cannot doubt yourself as a student. Remember that design is not a form of art, it is a form of communication. It requires that you be just as passionate about people as you are about creativity, and to find joy and the simpliest of things.
I would visit the college for a weekend, not just a day to truly get the feel of the college. You need to visit with your parents and then with someone your own age so you can experience it fully. You will be on your own living in this place so this decision is ultimatly yours. Upon entering college I would immediatly get your books and wander around campus, find your classes so your not stressed the first day and so you know your way around. You will see people sitting around and find things to do. This also is a great indicator of a campus. Your first weekend at campus DO NOT GO HOME. I cannot stress this enough, I know its tempting but you need to go out and meet people this first week is crucial in the social department, you dont have homework yet so take advantage. This is not highschool you WILL need to study, winging it as you did in highschool will not work so study effectively so you can still have those friends. Both aspects are equally important in order to get through college effectively while making those lifelong friends everyone needs. Good Luck!