My first year experience at RIT has been fulfilling. I have established a great, lasting rapport with many faculty and staff have been exposed to a variety of clubs and activities by my fellow peers. I feel that college, especially RIT, introduces its students to diversity both in cultural and educational disciplines. I can attest to that because this year, I have made friends of cultures, customs, and majors that are different from my own. I am positive that I would not enjoy or be familiar with RIT and the things that it has to offer without the power of networking. Going through my first year successfully, I plan to guide the new students and increase the awareness of the educational, recreational, and social opportunities that this school has to offer. Most importantly, I aspire to be the model student. I want to set an example for incoming freshman to follow. My intention is to advise them on how to manage their time effectively, maintaining an acceptable GPA and a healthy social life. If the new students take heed to my advice and learn from my first year experiences, they will have hopefully have a successful and productive first year.
I really feel that the first step toward finding the right college is for a student to know what career they want to pursue. However, the variety of careers is so vast that choosing one is easier said than done. When a student is not necessarily certain upon high school graduation what they want to do, I feel that starting at a local, highly accredited community college is very beneficial. Benefits of starting at a community college include: student being able to live at home and not having to worry about cost of housing, lower tuition costs, being able to get started on general education credits that should transfer, allowing the student to get more of a feel for their major without having to worry about wasting a large sum of money, and allowing the student to bypass manditory dorm housing freshman year. The second step would simply be finding a four-year college. The school chosen should be one that will accept a good portion of the student?s community college credits (which works better if an Associate degree is completed at the community college first) and one that offers a good program for the student's chosen major.
Attend RIT and declare Packaging Science as your major from day one and get involved early. I originally went to RIT for Civil Engineering Technology and it wasn't until late in my first year of attending that I decided to switch to the Packaging Sciecne major. With that being said I took a few classes that were not necessarily beneficial to my future packaging career. As to my second point of getting involved early, it is essential to meet professors as well as other packaging professionals outside of the classes you are taking. You are also surrounded by peers with similar interests that lead to long lasting friendships. I entered my first packaging competition this Spring with a group of two other students. We are now good friends who may look to work together in the future and we have also developed an outside the classroom relationship with one of our adjunct professors who has a huge network outside of RIT since he still has a packaging professional day job. I look forward to participating more outside of the classroom to further expose myself to packaging experiences as well as expanding my professional network,
If I were to travel back in time, I would tell myself to research more. I would research more about my intended major, mechanical engineering. My father is an ME and I figured I would like it too. I was decent at math and science, but my passion was art. Then I would have realized I could combine the two into what my major is now: Industrial Design (or product design). I wouldn't have wasted a year as an engineering major. Research more about scholarships. I wish I had applied to scholarships in high school, because my parents aren't paying my college tuition. I have to somehow come up with that money. While in school, I can only make so much money working. Work also takes time away from my studies. Research more about the environment, my real passion. I am an avid outdoors woman, and am treasurer of RIT's Outing Club, our school's adventuring/hiking/camping/biking/spelunking/geocahing/orienteering (and more...) club. I love nature and want to help our culture become more in tune to our environment. I want to eventually start my own business designing sustainable products and help save our earth.
Just over a year ago, I received my high school diploma along with 64 other seniors at a small St. Louis high school. I felt like I knew everybody there, both faculty and students. Many people there knew me on a personal level, and it was very comforting to walk through crowds of people who were friendly with me. That fall, my collge education took me to the Rochester Institute of Technology, a large school home to some 14,000 undergraduate students. I knew nobody there upon my arrival, and I was confronted with thousands of people with whom I was completely unfamiliar. Complicating matters was a feeling of shyness towards people who seemed like complete strangers. Had my present-day self been there to advise me in my earliest weeks at RIT, I would have told myself to be personal and outgoing. If I remained shy, those thousands of nameless faces would likely remain that way. It takes effort on my part to meet the nameless faces of my college, to become an acquaintance, to become a friend. Be outgoing! Say hello, ask people how their day is going, and become one less nameless person for others at college.
There are millions of pages in books and online devoted to parents and students involved in the college search process. Many of them have their own unique theories and rules. While these sources likely give reputable advice, in the end choosing the right college seems like a daunting task. I suggest to all parents and students out there to ignore demographics. Find the schools that offer the programs you want. From then on it?s all about visiting them, you won?t recognize the right college from a poster or a website. However the minute you walk on the campus football field or computer lab, you will be able to visualize yourself spending the four most important years of your life right there. From that point on it?s all about making the most out of your college experience. The minute you get on campus start networking, you will quickly find that no one can brave the college course alone; you will need friends, family, and faculty to keep you on course and focused. Finally, learn everything you can, anytime you can, from anyone you can - there will always come a time when you will be grateful you did.
Reading articles online and looking at pictures taken by professional photographers can only teach you so much. We live in a country where most graduating high school students continue their education at the college level, and because of such there is high competition. This competition is not only between students trying to attend a school, but also between schools trying to attract students. As so, the articles you might read, and the pictures you might see, could potentially be far too biased to be truly useful to you in your decision. The answer is to get out there and find out yourself. Visit the school, but don't restrict yourself to guided tours. Sit in on lectures, talk with students you pass by, make a note to yourself how the facilities are being used by everyday students. Find a school that suits you, and pursue it. Don't try to fit yourself into a prestigious school that doesn't suit your style. The end result shouldn't be about your college's reputation, but about the experiences you can have, and the enjoyment you can find in learning there. You make the world, it doesn't make you.
Just do it. The transition is not easy; college is nothing like high school. This is for the better in the end, but is a somewhat traumatic adjustment at times. You will be responsible for you - not a parent, a guidance counselor or your friends. You will make poor decisions, you will try classes you hate, you will explore options you never wanted to. Still, just do it. You will learn to become responsible for yourself. You will learn to make better decisions. You will learn to know yourself better through the classes you hate and the ones you love. You will find passions in learning you never knew could possibly exist. The friends you make with fellow classmates and with professors will be invaluable and lifelong. For all the tough times, there will be times you exult in the glory of your successes and the following through of your goals. You will learn that you can do almost anything. Remember, though, through all of this to mind your grades! In that class you hate, in the one you love- your grades matter for your future success.. Keep them up, even when you want to give up. Just do it.
College is a major part of someone's life not only is it four years but it creates the way to success in your future career. Thats why the college process is such an important and a very hard decision to make. You have to take into consideration everything about yourself, what you like to do (hobbies), your personality, your friends, what your major is, your lifestyle, culture, religion and beliefs. They all play an important part in picking the right college for you. So when you are looking at colleges make sure you visit all of them, talk to current students and go into a class or go to a club meeting that interest you to see if you would mesh well in that campus. Even though college is about learning not all of your college experience is in the class room, you also learn more about yourself and how to live with other people, by socially interacting with others, so you learn from your professors but also from your peers. Most importatly start looking into college early in your high school experience, that way you have more time to look at all the different things each college offers.
Many people might assume that a returning student at the age of 39 would have at least a few regrets about not having continued their education immediately after leaving high school. This is not, however, the case with me. Though reentering school after having been away for several years was a challenge, I believe having had the time to experience life in the workforce has given me a deeper appreciation for the education I am receiving today. I do not think I would have done as well had I begun this journey even a day earlier. The path I walked after high school was a rocky one. I was sexually assaulted as a teenager which helped to fuel a growing dependence on alcohol as I entered my 20s. I became involved in several increasingly abusive relationships, until one day I was so severly beaten, I nearly died in the emergency room. I made a decision that day to turn my life around. I entered rehab, and have been sober for almost 5 years. I am now entering my 3rd year of college, and often volunteer to help other women with substance abuse issues or who are victims of violence.