Messiah College Top Questions

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


Hold on to any financial aid options made available to you.


The advice I would give myself would be to not be afraid to be myself. I think a lot of times, high schoolers think about college as a time in which they can reinvent themselves and become somebody completely different. I came into college thinking that I had to become someone who I simply was not. I thought that I had to give myself a whole new identity because that was what you did when you entered college. I was wrong. It's okay to want to be more confident, to make yourself step outside of your comfort zone. However, a complete and total change isn't neccessary. I'm really good at being me. I snort when I laugh and my jokes aren't always funny. I can say some stupid things sometimes and I can embarrass myself greatly at times. But I'm also a really kind, caring, intelligent woman and for me to change the snorting and the joking and the embarrassing would be for me to remove a part of me that makes me who I am. College is about discovering who you are,and embracing it, not giving it all up.


College is not nearly as hard as they make it sound, but you have to be willing to work hard. Everyone you meet will have strengths and weakness, just like you, which means you need to be willing to be vulnerable and honest. As you explore education you will find friends who are more serious than others. Surround yourself with the friends who will inspire you on instead of holding you down. Honesty and humility are the best ways to learn. Many students are too cool to ask questions, but if you apply yourself now you will be better equipped for your future. I wish I would have worked harder at taking the higher level classes in high school. It would have helped me so much in my college classes now. There is more to education than getting good grades. The sooner you learn to accept the wrestling and struggling the greater your journey will be. Don't simply do what is necessary to get by, but plunge into the struggle and you will find greater joy on the other side. Look to Jesus for strength through this hard, exciting, and growing time in your life.


Dearest Twelfth-Grade-Kiyetet, Here I am, a junior in college, giving you little pieces of advice to handle some hurdles transitioning into your first semester of college! Messiah College isn't your stereotypical university on TV. Although you'll be overwhelmed at first by the concentrated population of young adults, you'll soon get used to it and discover that it's actually quite small. Although you are an extremely social person, you'll need a lot of time to yourself to process things and breathe. Also, time management is very important. You tend to focus more on your social calendar, however you must remember how much your parents sacrificed for you. You are an ambitous young woman with a bright future, take advantage of all the resources Messiah College will place into your lap! Manage your time wisely! I cannot stress the importance of rest and sleep! Work ahead! Start gathering information for your projects ahead of time, and do everything with excellence! Ask for help often, don't be ashamed! Lastly, allow yourself some time to get accustomed to your future crazy hectic schedule. Get involved in organizations, but remember, once again, to "manage your time" wisely!


Hi Sarah, I know you are fooling yourself and saying that you have time to work out your application process. You really don't. Start researching RIGHT NOW more schools and write down where you want to go. You want to go abroad, you want to live abroad, you want to study languages and cultures and ethnicities and topics of reconciliation and justice and peace and sustainability. You want to get the most out of your Environmental Science and Spanish classes now, because that will be the foundations of your future studies. You want to focus on community development and ethnic/racial tension and food security and accessibility. You want a college that won't crush you under it's massive student debt for the next 20 years of your life. You want to apply to every scholarship that you have the SLIGHTEST chance of winning, you want to pursue your passions, even if it does seem like a pipe dream. You want to yield to nothing in order to achieve your goals of making a lasting impact on the global, national and local community.You want to grow in mind body and spirit. You want to make a difference.


To my High School Senior self I'd tell; SAVE MONEY, SAVE MONEY, SAVE MONEY!! Stop going on Ebay and buying those random headbands and accessories that you barely use anyways and SAVE! College is expensive, even those $10 you can save will be helpful for something else. Arrange your sleep schedule, having to rely on your roommate to wake you up the first couple months is terrible, so arrange it now or over the summer but DO IT! Also, go to yard sales, you never know, they might have that mini fridge or keurig you're going to need for college for a bargain at what you would get at Walmart or Target. The main idea is SAVE MONEY! As much as you can because college is expensive!


Don't worry so much about making friends or losing those you love here at home. Everything will be okay. Nothing will change except for your love and affection for those you have left here at home. While you may not talk to them everyday or see them everytime you come home, when you do see each other, it will be like nothing has changed. Don't be afraid to jump into things whole heartedly. If it doesn't work out, don't worry. You will find a way to make something work. You have more talent than you think and you will rise to the occasion when you are asked. Don't stress too much. You will succeed as long as you have God on your side.


The first and most important piece of advice I would give myself is to be more outgoing! The first month or so, as a college freshmen, everyone is looking to make friends. If you do not introduce yourself in the beginning, things may become awkward. Even if you are a shy person, try stepping out of your comfort zone. Hang out with your roommates, talk to the people on your floor and the people you sit near in class. College is the best time to talk with people your own age and experience new things. Do not be afraid, because everyone is a little nervous.


My biggest piece of advice would be to really research the program you are going into. Don't just pick a school because you like their football team or even just the feel of the campus. Find the cheapest school that is going to challenge you and that also has a reputation that will land you a job. In high school its hard to see the consequences of your college choice, but they are very real. It is importnat to think as an adult when making this choice. In addition, I'd recommend getting involved in the community you are based in. I volunteer in inner city Harrisburg and it is the most rewarding experience I've had in college and is great networking. Try to get off campus into the real world as much as possible. I promise you will not regret it.


As a high school senior, i will advice myself to plan ahead of time to get the resources and finace that i need to go to college. I will do this by getting a part-time job during my junior year of high school so that i can have some money save for college. I will also advise myself to never wast time, not to be afriad to go to college. I will also advice myself to work hard, never give up, and belive in myself. I will also advise myself it is a good thing to go to college. it will bring me more opportunity, great future in life. I will also advise myself once i have an education , it will be with me for life and no one can take it away from me. I will also ask of school reimbursement at my job so it can help pay for my school. I will also advise myself to research alot of schools to see which programs the school offer. I will also advise myself to do volunteer work either in the hospital, or community that can help pay for college.


There is no need to worry because all incoming students are in the same boat, clueless regarding what is going on and what to expect. Further, when you transition into college life, you are not alone because vulnerability builds relations and creates community. It is important to be humble, open up and not be so guarded. Ask questions; do not try to figure everything out on your own. Embrace each opportunity that knocks at your door, enjoy these four years to the fullest because college is a once in a lifetime experience. Nurture relationships with professors and friends. Above all, fully appreciate this blessing and work diligently because not all individuals can attend college. A higher education is a privilege and with every privilege comes a responsibility. Take ownership for your decisions and make a positive difference in our world.


Don't even worry about what others think. Follow your passion.


I'd tell myself to try to make my experience fun but productive and directed toward some area they are truly interested in, no matter what other people may think. To try to end high school with as few bad memories and trauma as possible. I'd explain to myself what happened to me and how I finally was able to rise above the bad times but that because of my bad decisions some experiences will stick with me forever. Standing up to what they believe in and what they know is right because they can't wait for someone else to do the right thing. I'd tell them to take initiative, do their best, speak up for what they need and stick with the winners. Really, stick with the winners. Find an activity that they really love and don't let themselves get bored. Keep it interesting, whatever that means for them and make sure to take care of themselves before trying to save everyone else. Life is hard so get used to it. Go into life knowing this and figure out a way to make life as enjoyable as possible during the times it's not hard.


Never believe that you already know the answer. It's easy to get fired up and form an opinion once you encounter that first liberal professor. Sit back and take everything in. Listen before speaking. You can't have an open mind without seriously considering another viewpoint and then reflecting on your own. A degree will get you a career, but an open mind will take you places.


Picture the next four years as a blank canvas, pure and white and waiting to be covered in brilliant color. You have the chance to repaint yourself however you want, leaving behind the things you disliked about yourself in high school and accentuating the things about yourself that you value. Be daring, assert yourself, wear a funny hat, dance to class, talk to people. Be kooky and loveable and confident because you are a beautiful person. Don't be afraid to open up to others, because chances are people are a lot more friendly than you think, and the sooner you make connections the sooner you will start to feel like you are at home. Continuing the painting metaphor, don't rush. Paint slowly and with great detail. Live every second to its fullest because college isn't going to last long. Go about your life with the intention of making memories. Take chances and never let an opportunity to try something new and fun slip through your fingers. Tell that cute boy you like him, go iceskating even though you don't know how, take walks in the rain without an umbrella, and keep a journal.


Expect the unexpected! Take advantage of opportunities given to you. Don't hold back. When I went off to college I never ever ever in my wildest dreams expected to study abroad. When I got to college I realized that they had a study abroad program in Uganda. I had always wanted to go to Africa. I decided to look into the program, and decided to go. It was one of the best semester's of my life. I learned so much. I learned more about God, myself, other people, another culture, and another beautiful country. After I returned I became aware I could study abroad again. I went to Australia, and continued to learn and be challenged. While in Australia, I realized a semester in Jerusalem would fit into my schedule, and still allow me to graduate on time. I leave in 3 weeks. Being a Christian Ministries major, I cannot wait to be studying in the land of the Bible. These experiences have enhanced my education in unimaginable ways. Messiah makes these experiences possible in the sense that two of the programs didn't cost a cent more than it would cost sitting at Messiah College (airfare included)!!!!


When you're 18 and looking at Colleges, you think you have to have all the answers. In reality, no one knows when they are 18 who they will be 10 years from then. If you don't know what you want your major to be don't be stressed out. Don't choose a major just to pick something or because it promises wealth. I did that. I chose Nursing because I knew it was a stable career. Three years later I realized I didn't love it and couldn't be a Nurse the rest of my life. I could believe that after my junior year of college, and all that hard work I was switching majors. I could have graduated already but I chose to pursue what I loved, not what I felt was most secure. It's scary to get out there and plan your whole life, but you have time. It's never too late to change your mind. You are your own person and you choose who you will be today, tomorrow, and forever. Take your time and enjoy yourself. Everything else will fall in to place if you're following your heart.


I would most likely choose a different school, speak my mind, and not depend on my college to fix whatever problems I have somethings you just have to do yourself.


Study hard, don't put it to last minute. Learn to read the material before class and take notes fast.


I would tell myself to enjoy every minute of college. Don't get hung up on high school and the memories you made during that time. There are new memories to be made, new people to meet, new friends to make. Don't go home so often during freshmen year. Instead, step out of your comfort zone and meet new people. Embrace the new experiences and don't be afraid to take chances. This only happens once in your life so go for it. If you receive a bad grade on a paper put it behind you and move forward. There are many more opportunities to excel in academics. It is not the end of the world if you get a C. Just keep going. Most importantly, enjoy it and live life with no regrets.


If I had the opportunity to go to school like I am now, back when I graduated high school I would of taken advantage of the great opportunities that are available. For all students graduating high school you should go for your dreams, educate yourself as much as you can, especially this day and time, make some goals for yourself and continue your education and dreams. Then you can live the life you want and deserve. Anything is POSSIBLE, So go for it!! You'll do great and love what you do if you REALLY want It.......... SO, set your goals and live your dreams!!! Your life is a blank wall, paint a beautiful picture!!!


If I walked into the doors of my high school, I can find her. She will be not among the crowd, but alone in the library reading a book or finishing her homework for a math class. I can see myself now. Stressed. Alone. Working hard for the future. If I could give her advice knowing what I know now about college, I would tell her to relax and notice life. I would tell her to remember her family and to not worry about who is the smartest person in class. I would tell her to socialize more and live outside of the library or science building. She needs to know that it is okay if her teacher does not remember her name. It is okay for her voice to be heard if she feels that something is not right. It is okay for her to be herself without worrying about the opinion of others. That it is okay if she is not the prettiest girl on campus. College is a place where you need to put yourself first and find your purpose. This is the best advice that I can give anyone, including myself.


First and foremost, I would tell myself to start filling out scholarship applications, and develop a habit of trying to save as amuch money as you can with your educatoin so that I will not have a large amount of student loans to repay when I graduate. Second I would tell myself to make sure you know when you can first choose your courses so that you can get your more desired classes chosen before they fill up. Another thing that I would tell myself would be to start a list of what textbooks you will neeed for your courses if possible, so that you/I can start shopping around to save money on the course texts. Another thing that I would tell myself to do is to anticipate a much heavier workload then highschool, and don't just think college is gonna be all fun and games. Allong with the last point, I would also enourage myself to make sure that I enjoy my classes and time at college, while I get the most from every oppurtunity possible because I am after all paying a large amount of money for these oppurtunities.


Trough attending college I have recieved a better education that is applicable and improves my life, setting me up for a succesful career. Some would say that is the point of college; but for me that is just the beginning of that I have gained. There are some practical skills I have gained since being in College. I've learned how to prioritize, study efficently, and budget. Also I've gained the much needed skills of doing laundry and cooking ramen noodles. However, more importantly, going away to college allowed me to experience what it is like to be on my own. It allowed me to question what I thought in a safe environment and as a result my beliefs and opinions have become my own, not just something I grew up with. Through college I have been exposed to different cultures and lifestyles; I have learned how to step out of my comfort zone. Also I've learned how to be flexible and meet people half way (you have to when you have roomates). Overall college has taught me how to love, respect, serve and live with others and how much nicer a community is when this happens.


I have learned alot about my field of interest and I changed my major so I learned even more. I am somewhat prepared for the real world and because of college, i look forward to further education and then employment in the area of interest i have been educated in.


Messiah College has provided me with memories I will cherish for a lifetime, as well as a valuable eduation--not just academically, but also in areas of faith and personal growth. The faculty exemplify characteristics of leadership, and they genuinely care about the individuals in the classes they teach. I have become a more confident person, even to the point of developing leadership capabilities in overseeing teambuilding activities for sports teams, RAs, and incoming freshmen in areas like canoeing, high ropes courses, and rock climbing. I have also been challenged in my faith; though I attend a Christian school, there are many students who are atheists, and in taking the required courses in religion and philosophy, I have engaged in many challenging conversations and debates on the issues presented. In short, I have gained a greater appreciation for both my life and the lives of others in the past year, and I firmly believe that it could only have happened by attending Messiah College.


So far in college I've been experienced many different amazing things. One great thing is my new feeling of independence. College is helping learn to do things by myself and it is really helping me in my life.


College has prepared me for the real world, because time will wait for no one and you have to make the best out out what you have.


I have gotten so much out of my time thus far at Messiah College. The best thing I have experienced was the people and their ability to welcome me. The attitude of almost everyone here makes a new student feel at home.


There are many things that I have learned from my college experience so far, some things are just from being around other college students and mingling with others. I have learned to work with others and listen to others views from group work in some of my classes. I have also learned to be flexible with instructors and follow directions. One of the major things that I have learned through my college experience is self discipline and motivation. I have taken a few online classes throughout the semesters and learned that they are no joke! In all, I think the college experience has been a good influence and made me a well rounded person.


Since I have been at messiah, I have discovered many different opinions on situations that I never thought of before. I have made many great friends that have already proven to be there for me in hard times. I feel as though I have gotten valuble life experience from school, including learning how to live with a roomate ,since I haven't had a roomate since I roomed with my sister at the age of 5. Attending Messiah has been valuble to attend because it is "expanding my horizons" one can say, into fields of study I may have never considered before. I have found that being at school has created more of a sense of becoming more independant and learning how to handle issues on my own. I did not realize how heavily I relied on my parents until I came to school and they suddenly couldn't help me with a problem as easily, though they were willing to try. Overall I am glad that I chose to come to Messiah because it is constantly challenging me.


I have learned that there is not one way to look at anything. Everything has multiple approaches. We can learn better if we open our minds and allow ourselves to realize there are other view points out there. It has been valuable to attend here because it has taught me to respect other people, to live in community with many different people that I might not have met otherwise, and it has taught me how to relate my calling with my future vocation. On top of all that I have made friends that will stay with me through my lifetime, including professors.


My college experience has helped me to be comfortable being myself. Through the relationships that I have made and the experiences that I have had I have been given the opportunity to flourish in my own skin. In high school I would have been characterized as a wall flower. In middle school I recieved votes for being the most shy in the year book survey. In college I was placed in a new environment where I was able to start fresh. As time went on I made friends that allowed me to joke, to laugh, and to enjoy myself instead of worrying what other people are thinking of me. In a cross cultural course I was able to live with two different Amish families for a week each. From this experience I realized that I can make friends that span cultural gaps. I also realized that there are endless possibilities for my life. Some of these are not expected. As I continue my journey through college I am growing, learning (about my major and myself), and enjoying the few short years that I am a college student.


Not only has Messiah provided me with an excellent education, but it has also demonstrated life lessons. Since Messiah is a Christian College, I have learned to incorporate my religion, my love of Christ, and my duties as a Christian into my daily activities. Simply 'going to church' is a more important part of my life now, but faith has also flooded into every aspect of my life, such as extra-curricular activities, the classroom, and friendships. So far at college, I have discovered how insecure in my faith I am, but that if I ever want to grow in that security, that Messiah is filled with the exact right people to help me do so. On a bigger level, I have become more self-aware, in how I view others, how I am viewed by others, and how I treat others. Messiah, and college life in general, has made me a more independent person, while completely trusting that I have people to lean on to help me through when needed. But, because Messiah is a Christian campus with few distractions and temptations of secular campuses, I have grown , and am growing, into a mature person who makes smart decisions.


College has been the most amazing and interesting part of my life to date. I've learned what I've come to learn in my area of interest, psychology and so much more in other areas I'd never considered before college. I was given the resources to learn more than the professors had time to teach and the opportunity to find friends who thought like me and very differently than me. In some ways, college taught me about myself and how to find out who I want to grow to be. I was able to debate with friends on a myriad of issues and grow intellectually, spiritually, emotionally, and socially. I've not only gained knowledge, but wisdom as well. Had I gone straight into the work force, I never would have grown this much in all these ways or been able to accumulate the knowledge in the field of psychology that I did. I would never have been able to reach my dreams and help youth with mental disorders.


What makes a college experience valuable? The answer lies beyond academics. At Messiah College, student life is not just about learning. It's about relationships. From the very first week of school, we are encouraged to come together as a community, extending grace to one another. This gracious love is experienced all over campus. In classes, our professors are eager to help us grow academically as well as spiritually. The classrooms at Messiah are safe settings where students can voice their opinions without fear of judgment. Professors take the time outside of class to help us with our studies or just talk. With a heart to serve, many students on campus take advantage of the abundant opportunities to volunteer in the surrounding community or study abroad. Together we learn how much of a difference we can make in the world. Messiah has fueled my passion for learning and serving. I?ve been able to call Messiah my home for a year now, and in that year, Messiah has transformed me. Messiah has taught me to live my life to the fullest, and that is why I plan to stay at Messiah for as long as I can.


The opportunties and people from my college years outweigh any other advantage I've had from my education experience. As a college student, I was introduced to quite a diverse spectrum of individuals, of whom I've gleaned knowledge and understanding and have all impacted me in my transformation into adulthood and who I am now. Whether to a major outlook shift or a passing thought, whether I am still in contact with them now or no longer remember their names, there are very few people who haven't made an impression on me. And I hold my college directly responsible. I only would have been able to encounter them due to the open doors that college life presented me. I took classes that I would never had dreamed of while in high school. Professors and other students introduced ideas that forced me to think and consider myself and my stances. I was challenged to particpate in social service activities such as a spring break trip to Toranto to learn about urban homelessness and another time as a Special Olympics volunteer. I lived with a Guatemalan host family and struggled with language barriers. I wouldn't be me without college.


I have gotten an interactive life from my college expirience. Before I attended college I did not go out of my way to talk to people or do many things.Now I know that I want a career in Psychology so that I can be around people, helping them the best way I know how. Being in college has taught me to enjoy life and find a career that makes you happy, otherwise life will not be fun.


My college experience so far has been educational and character/identity building. I have discovered some of my passions, in the field of psychology, criminal justice, people with special needs, singing, being apart of a tight knit community. I have also grown as an individual. I have faced challenges and come out on the other side stronger, more defined, and self aware. I've learned how to live in community with people who are both alike and dislike and learned to embrace diversity. My college experience is valuable in that I have learned how to be a life-long student, learning from every experience. I have developed in my knowledge of several fields and become more confident in my ability to achieve my goals. In order to work towards a goal you have to be passionate about that goal and I have developed both the passion and the know-how to reach it.


Do not worry about making your life-long friends right away. You will end up meeting them eventually, for the some of the students you meet right away may not be around in a few semesters. Work hard, play hard, and love your neighbor, but most of all, love and trust God fully.


As a high school senior all I wanted out of college was to go to a place far away.. I wanted to prove to my parents that I was capable of living on my own. I looked at colleges five hours away, but chose Messiah College, which is two hours away. It was far enough away to be on my own, but close enough that my parents could visit. Now that I have completed my first semester of college, I realize that when I thought about the location of the college that I attend, I never thought about myself. The location has taught me a lot about myself. I am very close to my friends and family at home. I wholeheartedly enjoy going out and spending time with them. I also thoroughly enjoy a day at home, just relaxing. I now regret not considering these things when deciding on the location of the college that I wanted to attend. From this experience, I have learned one essential lesson that will be will me for the rest of my life. I have to make decisions based on my wants and needs, not decisions to please others.


As a senior, you feel like the top dog at your high school. You have your own car and liscense, you come and go as you please, you are the leader in your sports teams and extracurricular activities, and you are making life decisions. Right now, your have it all together and are feeling like an adult! Time to get out on your own! However, you have no idea what independence is yet! The transition from living at home to living away on your own is monumental. Keep in mind, though, that you can do it. Stay at school on weekends, get very involved in extracurriculars, and talk to your professors often. Get to know as many people as you can, try lots of new things, and seize all the opportunities that come your way. Your first year at college is a great time to branch out and learn about the world and about yourself. Never pass up a chance to experience something different just because you haven't tried it before. And keep in mind, your classmates are getting to know the world too! Reach out and embrace each other and all the opportunities waiting for you!


Jackie, I have something important to tell you. Put the homework down for a minute. This is exactly the reason I want to talk to you. You put so much effort and time into your work, beyond what is needed, but you do not know how to stop working and take care of yourself. So, here is what you need to do to prevent that medical withdrawal I suffered through: TAKE NO MORE THAN 15 CREDITS EACH SEMESTER. Yes, you?ll graduate late, but this way, you can put in the effort you want to, without damaging your health. Got it? I understand your classmates are all taking 18 or 19 credits, but you are built differently. Also, your parents care much for you and they do not want you putting so much pressure on yourself to pay for every expense. They will support you while you are in college. Stop being so stubbornly self-reliant and stay close to your family. Talk to Mom and Dad about any financial questions you have; they will be glad to help. Jackie, I have to go, but keep doing what you are doing well. Bye!


If I ever had the opportunity of going back in time and talking to myself during my high school year as a senior, I would probably encourage my past self to be more courageous and disciplined. I would explain to my former self that college life is rough during the first year because everything is new and challenging, but once you overcome those fears and obstacles, college life becomes easier and a lot of fun. I would advise my past self to also be frugal with both my time and money spent in college. Also, college gives us a great responsibilty and opportunity to grow as an individual. Lastly, I would encourage my past self to discipline myself for my studies and take life one step at a time. College may seem like one big step from being a teen to an adult, but it is actually composed of smaller steps leading to who we want to be in life as an adult.


The part of my high school experience that I struggled with was confidence. As a current Messiah student, I have been blessed with an abundant amount of brothers and sisters, because I came to Messiah desiring only to be myself. I thought 'if they didn't like me, then they are not meant to be my friend'. One of my brothers that I met in calculus class has become one of my closest friends. He told me, "the reason he wanted to be friends with me was because I was so on fire with Christ and, at the same time, I was so real". If I could go back to high school and advise myself, I would tell myself to be confident in who I am in Christ, because it doesn't matter what people say about you; you are being real and your true friends will see that. Blessed Sister Teresa says it perfectly: "its never been between you and them anyway; it had always been between you and Him [God]". Being confident in who you are is extremely important in ameliorating your college experience, because no one wants to judge you; they only do, because you judge yourself.


I would tell myself not to be worried about the college search process. When I was applying for colleges, I was nervous that I would pick the wrong one and be miserably stuck there for 4 years. When I did not get accepted to my first choice, I thought my fears would become realized. But once getting to school, I found out there was something on campus for everyone to enjoy. Most of my friends have said the same thing about their colleges, and if they did not like it, it is easy to transfer. It's also not that big of a deal to transfer-- many people do it. I would also reiterate to myself that I probably will change my major. I always wanted to be a Broadcast Journalism major all through high school. It was my drea. But when I attended classes, I realized it was not my dream anymore. I changed my major to Sociology, and I love it. It fits my personality perfectly, and people at the school really helped me figure that out. I would also tell myself that it IS possible to have a good time without drinking or partying!


Dear High School Self, College in on the horizon, and you can't wait to get out of the house. But before you finally get on campus and into that dorm, there are a few things you should know. Moving into a new place is stressful. You've got new people and a new lifestyle. Give yourself some time and space to get over any loneliness, but don't isolate yourself in the process! Also, print out a campus map before you go! Even if it's a small campus, a map is great! In the dorms, concentrate on the people around you. Having a community through this next year is what makes the difference between an awesome and an okay college experience. You'll meet new friends through activities, like, say, International Club, but the people on your floor are going to be living with you. Don't ignore them, and for goodness sake, learn their names! And don't worry about being shy. If you can just get out a "hi" you'll start a conversation, making it easier the next time. The alternative, staying trapped in your self-contained bubble, will only lead to regrets. Study hard!


If I could traverse the time space continuum in order to interact with my past self, there are two things that I believe he would benefit from knowing. First, I would advise him not to transfer colleges. I transferred during my first year of college. Ultimately, transferring was the correct choice; however, it would have been better if I had simply started at my current college. Because of transferring, I have had to make innumerable visits to the registrar's office and fought many battles in a frequently vain attempt to get my credits to transfer properly. My life as a college student would be immeasurably easier if I had avoided the pitfall of transferring. Second, I would teach myself the rules of logic (good arguments versus bad arguments, logical fallacies, etc). In my sophomore year of college, I took a philosophy course which taught me the rules of logic. That knowledge started me on a grand quest for truth which has dictated my life ever since. That quest has been helpful for everything from analysis of abstract philosophical concepts to daily problem solving. My current understanding and knowledge could be far greater if I had begun my quest earlier.


Reflecting on the past four years as a student at Messiah College, if given the opportunity to go back in time and provide a highschool senior version of myself with advice, I would encourage myself to find the courage to set aside any preconceived prejudices; to celebrate one another?s differences and to refuse to clutch to the familiar. As a member of the Messiah Community, I have discovered that an individual?s past shapes his/her present, and that often, the most influential individuals in life are those with immeasurably different backgrounds, religious traditions, and life perspectives. I believe that only through embracing the unfamiliar and acknowledging each individual as an individual with a purpose and a calling, can our generation bring forth the change our world so desperately needs.


Students need to be aware that its difficult, but that it is a life change that is worth it. Choosing a college is hard, but you need to pick one that you love. If you find yourself hating your school, you should pick a new one. You also have to be careful to not give in to the temptations of college. You are there to focus on your studies so that you can have a career. Students should also get involved in as much as they can handle in order to make friends and learn new skills.