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Riverside City College

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

Growing up as a 7 year AVID Student, I had been preparing for college almost half of my lifetime. I took all the right AP/Honors classes, took on plenty of student leadership roles, and was an active member in campus clubs and sports teams. All seemed to be going well until my father began having an affair with another woman. A month later, my 19 year old sister became pregnant. Our previously humble home transformed into a battleground of hurt, anger, and tension. Somehow for the next year of high school, my studies , along with everything that i formerly cared for, slipped out from underneath the radar of my priorities. As my grades plummeted, I earned an Incomplete in AP English, and was no longer eligible to apply to any 4 year colleges. Distraught and angered, I rebelled against any tedious work to be done and burned bridges with most of my successful friends senior year. Knowing what I know now about college life, I wish I could go back and give myself this advice, "Collect yourself and complete what you have started. Life holds many trials, but if you just keep moving, It will all be worth it."

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If i were to go back in time and tell my senior year self anything about college life it would be too not take college lightly and to not over load myself with classes. I would tell myself that college is nothing like high school where i could sleep through class and still get an A grade, that instead, college was something i would have to take seriously. I would explain to my more youthful counterpart that the second most crucial point to stress in college life is balance between class time, relaxation time, and work. If incorrectly mixed, the combination of these three things would ultimately lead to a miserable and unnecessarily difficult semester. Of course the most important insight i would have to express to myself would be the importance of friends. Truly nothing in this world is more important to a successful and stress free college life than amazing friends that you can count on to lift your spirits and encourage you in times of need. These are the jewels of wisdom that my oyster has cultivated for the short time i have attended high education and the things most important to my younger self.

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I wish I known the costs associated with college and most of all worring how i need to put it more hours working to pay for the the courses and text books. In high school, it’s pretty clear what classes you have to take to graduate without stress of the expenses. The material covered in college courses is more complex than that taught in high school classes, and it’s presented at a faster pace. I learned since the academic pressure is much greater in college and it very crucial that I had to take responsibility for my own learning because no one is going to be spoon fed. Learning to be prepared to manage my time between studying, exams and balancing classes schedule which means learning to choose course load that includes some challenging classes and others that are less intense. It okay to ask to request for help, no one well be looking for me. Now I know that is it okay to go through tough times because it makes you stronger and when times get tough, I understand that there is nothing wrong with me because that's just the reality of college. It worth it.

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There are many things I believe I did very well during my senior year of high school. However, as with anything else, there are just as many things I feel continue to aggrivate me as a college student. If I were able to go back even for a brief amount of time, there would probably be much good I could do for myself. I would tell myself not to be so frightened of the future and so fearful of what has not yet occured. Maintaining such an outlook only strikes one with paralysis and makes it difficult to maneuver through even the slightest of life's trials. Apprehension and timidity do not fare well with the future. In fact, they kept me isolated from the excitement of college life. Instead of growing into an adult and facing my future with fortitude, I turned that moment for development into an ominous occasion to regress back to an adolescent state of avoidance. But, however much development I might have denied myself, it took all the more maturity to arise in the midst of those doubts and march toward something so uncertain as the future.

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if i went back into time as a high school senior there would be alot of advice i would want to give myself. i would have told myself that it doesnt matter that you dont have a social security number right now still go to those college fairs and find out what it is that you want to do. dont give up on your school work and let your grades drop because you feel youll never get anywhere because your birth mother never took you to the hospital when you were born so that you could get a social security number. you might not have been able to fill out college applications but you could still could have looked into colleges and asked some questions . you might not have applied for financial aid because no social security number but still look into colleges and keep your options open. dont give up your social security number will be here in just a couple of months. look into univerisities and see what kind of programs they have as well as community colleges. go on campus tours and see what you like best. that is the advice i would give myself

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If i could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would tell myself to apply to more colleges. Specifically I would tell myself to apply at colleges across the nation, even if I have no desire to go there. I would tell myself to apply for those obscure scholarships that arent as much as the mainstream ones but I have a better chance at getting. I would tell myself not to fear the transition between high school and college so that my applications will appear stronger. I would tell myself to get into the practice of writing essays so that I wont balk at any scholarship that requires an essay. I would also tell myself to stay away from the UC system as they are going through financial hardships and will be virtually unaffordable. This will save me the hassle of transferring to a community college. But most importantly I would tell myself to apply to the college that I want to go to, to pursue the career that I want to have, and not to be swayed by the words of my parents who have different ideas of what I shoud do.

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if you have an idea of what you want to do with your life, follow the path that will get you there. the changes are not big if you attend college right after high school. there are many social events throughout the college experience but dont let them distract you too much from your studies. that great party is not going to study and pass the final exam for you, only you can do that. why would you waste all that money youre using to pay for the classes you are not going to attend or follow through with? taking breaks are necessary at times with the challenges life throws at us. get back as soon as possible. the longer you wait the harder it is. may not seem like it now but think about it: youll be older with more responsibilities. these can take over the time you would have available to focus on school. once youre older you will not have as much financial help offered to you.stick to it, finish it, and do your best. your education is something that no one else can do for you, and something that can not be taken from you.

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If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a senior in high school, I would tell myself not to give up so easily. My first attempt at attending a university failed horribly. I was holding down a job for the first time in my life, and despite advice to limit my hours, I was working at least 35 hours a week. In addition to overworking myself, my life circumstances were overwhelming, and partly because I thought I couldn't handle it, and partly because I didn't want to, I gave up. I stopped going to class, and rather than withdrawing, I dismissed it, endeding up with three horrible F's on my transcript, a defaulted student loan, and more obstacles than I ever imagined in my road back to school. Four years later, I have kids and a family, and I know how hard it is to support them. If I had kept trying, rather than quitting, I could have had a degree by now, rather than working the same horrible job everyday. If I could go back in time, I would tell myself what everyone else tried to, "don't you dare quit!"

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The most valuable lesson I’ve learned so far from my college experience has been the broadening of my perspective. I’ve discovered how to confront problems and challenges with a calm and open perspective. Where there’s a will, there’s a way, I’ve learned that if I work hard enough then the tools I need to build my future are always some where near at hand. Threw working to put myself threw school while in school I’ve gained a great deal of determination, I will achieve anything I set myself to. It’s the thirst for more knowledge that has driven me to do all I can to continue my education. I use the problem solving abilities I’ve acquired at college in my every day life. From work, to social interactions to walking down the street, I am able to think outside of the box and chose the best answer to any situation no matter the challenge. I know that the more I learn and challenge my mind to expand in my drive to continue my studies the more I’ll be capable of doing my part in this life. Thank you. Evan Leacox

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If I could talk to myself back when I was still in high school I would have taken more concurrent enrollment classes that were paid for through my high school. It is very expensive to go to college and I would have taken advantage more of the programs available to me. Also after working a manual labor job for almost a year I realize that I do not want to do that for my life work. I want to get paid more money for the same hours and do something that doesn't require a lot of manual labor. That is why I have decided to go to college and have enrolled in a pharmacy technician program. My sister is doing a pharmacy technician program through her high school. I did take HVAC at a vocational school, but with the recession I was laid off at my job within 9 months. That field being in the construction industry isn't doing very well. I researched and found out that the medical field is a more stable field to be in and that is why I have chosen the pharmacy technician field. I hope to get scholarships to help pay.

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