Throughout my college exprience, I have learned that an education is expensive but at the same time, very priceless. College teaches you how to interact with all kinds of people from many different walks of life. In today's society, this is extremly important, as most jobs require you to work with many different departments full of many different people and personalities. One of the keys to being successful, in my opinion, is being able to deal with all kinds of people. In the beginning of my college career, I took for granted the opportunity to just go to school and learn, as I did more socializing and partying than anything. Now that I am a single mother who works fulltime and goes to school fulltime in the evenings, I appriciate the opportunity even more. Having a degree makes all the difference in the world between you and the next applicant and your income. I have learned many valuable skills that have allowed me to excel above the rest of my friends and family that have not gone to college and I am thankful for that. I hope to inspire those around me to go the same and attend college.
I would tell myself to seek as much help as possible or available. Being the first person in my family to attend college, I faced many difficulties because no one in my household knew about the process of applying to colleges or for financial aid. I would tell myself not to be ashamed or embarassed to seek help. Staying quiet and trying to do everything by myself was a very stressful period for me. Don't let pride get in the way. Lots of people need help and that is why there are resources available. Trying to do everything yourself can lead to mistakes, whether small or large, they affect and prolong the process and increase stress. Ask teachers, friends, go on the internet and look for help. Applying to colleges and for financial aid is stressful enough and trying to do everything by yourself only makes the experience worse. When you seek help, the experience becomes less stressful and you even begin to enjoy it because it doesn't fell like the weight of the world is on your shoulders. As with any other major decision in life, we need to seek help, resources and advice.
If I were able to go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, it would change my life's path. My senior year would be full of great anticipation of going away to college to pursue my Bachelors Degree, Masters and whatever else my hearts desire would be. My focus, I'm sure, would be to pursue my passion in Human Resources and Legal. I would definitely work on finding the school that would help facilitate and direct me with the success of my goals. I would tell myself to pursue my education directly after graduation. I would gather the information and utilize all the resources I would need to make that happen. I would continue my education to the fullest until I reached my goal. Pursuing the heights of my education after graduation from Chicago Vocational High School would have been my main focus. It was my decision to further my career within the banking industry and not pursue a consistent path focusing on my continual educational goals. Graduating from DePaul University with a BA in HR at the age of 43, would have only been the dream of someone else.
Assuming that I could travel back into time and talk to my former self as a high school senior, I would tell myself to never loose hope on attaining your life long goals. As a young adult we are faced with many problems and no clear cut answers. The ability to know what life has instore for you is an impossible one. To truly know what you an individual will do later in life depends on the decisons that are made early on. This can only be accomplished by seeking good sound advise from a solid mentor who can guide you through life mysteries. I am currently forty years old and have decided to return to school to enhance my life skills by bettering my education. I am currently a single mother of four wonderful children who will soon embark on their own college life. I feel that in order to be the mentor that my children deserve, I must first endulge in the neccessity of continued education. By my actions, I hope to encourage and teach by example. I have found that children will learn best by example and will copy the actions of those that they consider mentors.
Going into my sophmore year of college, I feel extraordinarily more prepared for the academic year than I did when I was a freshman. If I had the chance to go back and give myself advice as a high school senior, the most important thing I would suggest would be to start creating and utilizing tutor and extra academic help resources now because those types of services become very vital in college in order to really be successful in college courses. I would suggest developing skills in order to better adapt living with strangers and the different lifestyles that we are all accustomed to living. Although being involved on campus can be extremely beneficial by building relationships and establishing networks throughough the univeristy, I would warn myself not to become overly involved where I become consumed in extracurriculars and as a result become more destracted from my academic work. Reflecting upon these changes now has better prepared me for the upcoming year where I am sure that I will learn and experience situations differently to only grow each year after.
School has always been extremely important to me. I am currently studying to be an Elementary Education and Special Education Teacher. I transferred to Roosevelt University in the spring of 2010 into the Education Program and loved it. I have had several opportunities to be placed in classrooms to experience hands-on classroom training with amazing teachers. I have learned so many valuable classroom management/behavior, organization, personal organization, and situational strategies from my experiences through Roosevelt University that I will take with me into my future classrooms for the rest of my career life. Also, this University has many professors that are beyond highly qualified for their jobs and are able to provide their students with personal experiences that I have come to find tremendously helpful. My experience in college at Roosevelt University is very valuable to me and I strongly believe that my experiences, extensive work hours, and hard work will go along way in not only my future as a teacher, but also for my future students and coworkers.
One of the most important things in picking a colleges are tours. Go to different types of colleges and campuses to get an idea of the different atmospheres. What you thought you wanted might change once you get there so know your options. See what kind of people attend the school and talk to students and get their opinions on the school. Compare schools and decide what works best for you. Interact with the Financial Aid and Student Accounts Offices to see how comfortable you are with the assistance they provide because they can be really helpful or really stressful. One of the best things about orientaion is meeting and making friends; you'll be happy you did the first few nights when you don't know anyone yet. Get to know people in your classes. It's so helpful to know someone in your classes and you'll meet more people. Remember this isn't high school so don't slack off, you're paying alot of money for this. And don't avoid homework for stupid reasons, it will make you very stressed later and you'll regret it when you're missing out on alot of fun.
Attending college has taught me how to work hard, do well and make my dreams come true. Through talking with knowledgeable professors and eager students, I have been able to make great connections and network with like-minded people. As a child, I dreamt of getting a career in the music field and because of my education, I'm finally beginning to live that dream. My professors helped inspire me to create my own music promotions company, which has become a true blessing for me as I greatly enjoy caring for my musician clients. I truly feel I have grown the most as a person through my years in college. It was in college that I truly figured out who I was as a person and began truly loving to learn and there's really no other experience in my life that I can say has made me feel that way except for embarking on my quest for my degrees. I will never forget how hard I worked in college, especially all the nights spent cramming for tests, writing endless pages for papers, and completing projects! Those experiences all lead me to my happiness today.
I would tell myself that peer pressure does not matter and what matters more is how well I do academically. I would tell myself to ask more questions because there is no such thing as a wrong question. I would also advice myself that a good gpa is not everything because what matters more is whether or not you graduate because when you have a college degree you have a much better chance of getting a highly paid job. When I was in college, I worked full-time and took evening classes. It was not easy, yet I managed to maintain an excellent gpa as well as an excellent reputation at work. I always had a positive attitude and kept moving on which is got me so far. I have my mother and sister to thank, because they are excellent role models. We immigrated to this country in 1996, all we had was 6 suitcases, but now my sister has an accounting degree from UIC, I have two associate degrees from Harper and taken many classes at UIC and Roosevelt University. My mother, sister and I did odd jobs to make ends meet and lived from paycheck to paycheck.
You are blessed with good health -- just that should already be a motivation for you to work harder, aim higher. Do not take money, time, and most especially, your education for granted. You may think that you are young and have all the time in the world that you put off the important things like college. You may have gotten a job right now that enables you to earn money and help support your family at their time of need. But do not use this as an excuse to settle and be complacent. You can do so much more! You have the means to both work and go to school FULLTIME. You have so much potential in you as it has been reflected by your work. Don't waste it. You can serve your family and community much better if you just get the education that you need. Remember, always think long term. Learn to prioritize your goals and envision yourself in the future. Think of all your talents and abilities that you would've wasted if you don't capitalize them right now. Just do your best that you don't end up dwelling in what might have been.