Northland College has provided me with experiences I thought I would never get the chance to experience. Coming from a suburb south of the Twin Cities, I was surrounded with media and advertisments. Coming up to Northland provided me with a chance to be near the natural world and respect it for what it has to offer. I've been able to reflect of my life, society, and the structure and systems that control our world. I've been able to meet with visonaries and pioneers of different movements that capture my attention, and have been able to jump into the fields and get hands on work in the areas I want to have a career in. The community and college provides me with an mentally asthetic experience and great class discussions and projects. I've been blessed with the opportunity to come to Northland College, and I hope I can get an education that will help my family, my friends, my community, my state, my country, and the overall world.
I have learned more about myself in the past five months than I have in the past eighteen years. Upon entering college, I learned how to doubt myself with more intensity than I ever had before, and this setback seemed ever-looming and wholly immovable at first. Eventually, through my struggle and introspection, I was provided with the solution of accepting myself for what I truly am. As soon as I became confident with my own, I could focus more strongly on furthering my education and the beauty that surrounds me every day when I walk to class. I realized that I have never been more satisfied with my life, my college, and the independence it affords me.
When I graduate from Northland, I want a career in Natural Resources. My goal is to protect our resources and National parks for future generations to enjoy and use Sustainable. I have attended Northland for only a semester and have already gained infinite knowledge and experience to help me reach my goal. One example the Sustainable Community Development class that taught me the history of how humans use to live, and discussed the events that led up to the current various Environmental problems. The un-bias discussions in class helped me see both sides to a problem, understand that everyone has a different perspective. We need to be open minded and make decisions and recognize what we do now, will effect the future. Next year I applied to study abroad in Central America, living in an eco-village. We will learn how poor communities live sustainable and help them build solar panels. This experience will be an eye-opener for me, one that sitting in class can not teach me. I will gain life lessons, skills and a better appreciation to our environment. Northland is about hands on experiences and about being active in local communities. Positive vibrations here!
My experiences at Northland College have shaped me into the person I am today and the person I will be for the rest of my life. Participating in NCAA Division III athletics have taught me invaluable lessons about work ethic, time management, and life choices. This experience has laid down my future and set me on the path to success which I could not have obtained any other way. I have grown so much as a person the past two years and have learned so much that I wanted to find a way to enhance the lives of others in the way that my experiences here at college have enriched mine. This is the reason I have switched to an education major and I am not looking back!
Choosing to go to college was a leap for me considering I was one of the few of my entire family to attend. Ever since I took the leap, I have never regretted it. College has prepared me acedemically through involved lectures, hands-on lab work, and group projects. At Northland specifically, I feel I can take any course and apply it to my life. Even though I am majoring in Biology, courses such as our Native American Studies classes, have exposed me to some of the local culture of Ashland, WI.
I value my education at Northland for several reasons. From attending Northland, I have been exposed to new skills such as composting and new talents such as belly dancing. I've also expanded culturally; Northland's student body is very diverse in ideas. It can be an adventure when you simply walk into the cafeteria. There are days when I sit with a group of students I hardly know and by the time I leave, I have a larger social network and gained insight on what they think of various topics. Finally, being at Northland grants me the ability to reach my goal of becoming a zoologist.
I'm learning more about the field I want to go into. I transferred into this school from another school and it has been valuable because my last school sucked.
From my college experience so far, I have learned to become much more independant and responsible. Before college, I thought I was much more of an independant responsible person but by coming to school, I discovered this was not the case. It has been valuable for me to attend here because it gets me into the outdoors and lets me explore the world around and truly learn what is wonderful about the earth we live on and how we all need to gain a sense of independance and learn responsiblity for our own actions.
I have learned so much already in just one semester of college. Like my professors promised, my ideologies and views I held prior to college have been challenged. I am able to understand the world from many aspects. Especially with my school connections program. I have also met so many wonderful, inspirational people, students adn professors alike. Every student of Northland has something unique to contribute and it has been a pleasure to get to know everyone. They teach me as much as my textbooks do.
For just over a year now I have experienced so much and learned more then I thought I would, in just this little amount of time. Looking back at the time I have spent here I see that I have learned a lot about our world we live in and the environment around me, from the time spent learning in the outdoors. Being an education major, from just the few classes that I have taken, I have learned and experienced so much about the younger generation that will help me once it is time for me to start teaching. Being a student athlete I have seen what dedication and hard work can get me. Also, the friends I have made so far and the ones to come will stay with me forever. I know that there will be many more great experience for me to come here at Northland College and I can't wait for them to come.
College has been a major turning point in my life. It is the place where I have learned to think, write, and live critically. I have learned to go beyond what is required and beyond the grade I may earn to what I can learn for everyday life and the improvement of others and myself. It has been very valuable to attend college because it has exposed me to a myriad of different cultures and ideologies, which in turn both challenge and respect my own. I believe it has made me a much stronger person to "get out of my bubble" so to say, and venture into a world where my cherished views are but one among many that struggle to make sense of the world and live in peace and harmony. It has been an enlightening experience and one which has completely transformed the way I view people and life.
After taking classes that I didn't know would interest me, spending a semester in Iceland studying sustainability and learning more about local agriculture than I thought I wanted to know, I'm a changed person (for the better!). I've built great relationships with my professors, who want to see me succeed, and everlasting friendships. The education is totally unique to Northland and helps students connect to the region. If I could afford it , I would spend the rest of my life as a student at Northland College!
I've personally learned that procrastinating is one thing you do not want to do at a college. They teach me that and they also taught me that you can't always just worry about yourself. What we do now will affect the future for our sons and daughters. If we destroy our resources now what will our family have to hope for? Nothing there will be nothing left if things don't change. I personally didn't care about the earth before I came here but they had made me realize that things need to change.
My college experience has truly been impossible to describe. It has changed me and I am extremely glad that I chose Northland College for the last two years of my life. Of course I have learned a lot academically, after all it is college, but my most valuable experiences have been outside of the classroom. The small size of Northland has helped me feel like I can create new things and ideas on campus. In a larger school you may get overlooked, but here I have been able to help form a new themehouse, and I can have my ideas heard by the teachers and campus as a whole. In addition, many of our classes recognize the beauty of the area we are in, right on the shores of Lake Superior, and they integrate this natural world into the classroom as much as possible. This cements my reason for choosing this campus in the first place. I love nature, and want to protect our environment, and I chose a school with many other people who share those idelas. I don't believe that any other school could integrate this love into everything else they do.
Knowing what I know now about college life, I would tell myself that I needed to learn more about time management and practice it before leaving for school. College has a wide variety of activities, clubs, sports and other extracurriculars for students participate in. Students meet many new people and make lasting connections with them, going to get togethers or just hang out in a dorm room. But, in between all that time, there has to be time made for classes and homework. Meeting new people, making friends, and having fun is a great thing to do in college, but only when there is time for it. It can distract many from their studies and make cause for falling behind. So, all high school seniors, in my opinion, should learn more about time management so they can have time for fun, friends, and school. I know now , after my first semester, that homework is demanding and does take quality time to complete for good grades. I am now managing my time better by doing homework in between classes and then finishing in the evening so at night I have time for a little leisure!
If you're going to go pay to go to school, you may as well go to a school that you really feel passionate about. If you focus on how much money you are spending, you lose sight of your education and your dream. But, if you realize that money comes secondary to your passions, then you can get the most out of your courses. Also, if you really love a campus, but the school administration frustrates you, don't switch schools. Get involved! College is a mini-real-world. If you don't voice your opinions on campus, you'll never have the guts to do it in front of a nation. Don't be afraid to question something that seems wrong. Sometimes it is, and when it's not, you learn something. Don't fear learning through your mistakes.
Visit all of the potential colleges you're looking at and be sure to tour the campus as well as all of the surroundings that you are able to visit. Also, ask around locally about students there (hopefully you'll find a student who attends there) and asks lots of questions to people who are a part of the college community!
Different colleges have different feels. The important thing is comfort. If you feel comfortable where you're living, you'll end up being happier, more confidant, and a better student overall. Some colleges might be a better fit for different jobs, but in the end the quality of a student's education is based on the effort one puts into one's classes.
One thing I did that I reccomend to everyone is to talk to the students in your major, specifically about the teachers. If they are unhappy with the staff, odds are that you will be too. If you're undecided, ask around and get a general feel of the teaching staff from the students' perspective.
Don't judge a college based on its food. Regardless of how good it seems, or how diverse the menu, you will be eating at this place for four years. You will get sick of it. In fact, unless you have special dietary needs, as in vegan or diabetic, don't even check out the cafeteria. It simply does not matter. If you do end up eating, remember that this is a great place to talk to students and ask them questions.
Let the student pick, and always live on campus for the first year
I encourage students and parrents to take a deap breath and relax. As much as the public tells you that going to school right away is an absolute necessity, it's not. If you aren't sure of where you want to go, or what you want to do, just take a break. Traveling and working will help you decide what you might want to do while making money, otherwise many kids end up making a decision that they end up regretting, and it can cost a lot. When people tell you "don't worry you've plenty of time to decide what you want to do," they're quite wrong. Four years isn't much time to decide, not to mention you typically have to declare a major within 2 years, it really helps having a plan right when you enter college and sticking to it. Otherwise you end up staying for longer than you wanted to. Going to college is a great experience and you will learn a lot, but take your time deciding where to go and what to do. It isn't necessary to jump right into college.
I would tell parents and students to keep their options open and realize that people, especially young people, may change a lot during their first couple years in college. I would suggest that they don't stop looking or applying once they have been accepted to a college that may work for them. If the student has any doubt about what they want to do or any doubts about whether the college may work, I would tell them to choose a college with more class/degree options, more extracurriculars, more diversity, etc. so that it will be easier to change your mind and try new things. Do not go into college with your mind set in one way or on one goal. College is almost more about learning about yourself than learning about a certain subject. Be ready to be flexible and open-minded.
To find the right college, forget about the money . When I chose my school, I was having difficulty deciding between three schools, so I told myself to consider what I would do if I had a full ride to each. I knew exactly where I wanted to go, and I still love my choice. I picked the most expensive college, but I recieved some decent scholarships through the school that really made it affordable.
To make the most out of your college exprience, pick one you love. Don't chose because your parents, your friends, or your significant other love it, think about it yourself. Visit the school, and when you do try to meet current students and talk to them! Talking to current students is the best way to find out what is going on at the school, what is avaiable to you, but also what might be some of the down sides to that school. And once you've picked, just make sure to get involved, and even try things you didn't do in high school. It brings you great experience, and allows you to figure out what you like and dislike outside of the classroom.
Check out as many schools as possible. There is a right fit out there, you just have to look for it. The first three weeks are the most important weeks of your college career. Get out there and meet people and make friends. Everyother freshmen feels the exact same way as you do and is in the same boat.
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