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Salt Lake Community College

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

Dear Senior Carly, You're about to graduate how exciting! Please; however, be careful of getting what many call "senioritis". Symptoms include taking the easiest classes possible, laziness, lack of studying, and becoming apathetic about school in general. The cause is when seniors focus merely on the minimal requirements to graduate high school, rather than focusing on college. Don't fall into this trap! Taking this year seriously, you can put yourself ahead after graduation. One way to do this is take more college level classes. Passing these classes will save you a lot of time and money! They also teach you valueable study skills and they give you a taste of what college coursework is like, making you more prepared to be a successful student. Besides taking academics more seriously, I would also advice to get involved in more extracurricular activities. In college it becomes more difficult to balance school, work, having a family, and whatever else may come along. Take advantage of anything you can get involved in now! You can also learn valueable lessions from participating in extracurricular activities. such as balancing your responsibilities. Please take these words of advice, and good luck! Sincerely, future Carly

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?Sara, you will make college happen for you. There are many resources, people and institutions that will support you in this. It?s just up to you to find your motivation. You know you love learning. Remember that little girl who daydreamed about being a teacher herself one day? I promise you, she is still there. You will find her again, it will either happen now or later. It?s completely up to you. But if you find her now, you will save yourself precious time and heartache. My recommendation to you: Don?t worry about the finances for college at this point, they will line up. You are very intelligent and capable. Just enjoy your classes now, and use them to determine your interests. What makes you excited? This is your time to discover yourself! Once you re-discover your passions, your motivation will follow. With motivation and drive, you will accomplish anything. Your fist two years of college will be an exciting time, full of self-discovery. There is nothing to fear. Many options will open up to you and the world will begin to look different, more abundant and full of possibilities. The best is yet ahead!"

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Dear Mallory- If there is any advice I could give you it would be to stay optimistic, be flexible to change and new ideas, and realize that in the future, things will come up. Sometimes we find ourselves in situations that are out of our control, either personally or financially, where pursuing further education may have to come second to your life. Most of your peers will be either graduating with their degrees or applying to graduate school. What is important to remember is to never lose sight of your goals. Good things take time; school takes time. Never feel that you are in competition with anyone or feel the need to rush your education. Right now you're thinking you go to college, graduate and land your dream job, but in the future economic climate we live in, that?s not the case. While your friends may have earned their degrees in four years, they are struggling to enter the job market with unemployment around 9-10% nationwide. Try to stay motivated and find a path that suits your own lifestyle; you can?t always plan out your life but always continue to pursue your goals. Sincerely, Mallory Black

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I have asked myself many times what I would do differently if I knew then what I know now. I am a person that tries to predict how my future will be carried out. I have had many thoughts about school and my profession. If I could talk to myself as a high school senior I would give myself advice about online classes, choosing classes, and the importance of scholarships. First, I would tell myself the benefits and downfalls to online classes. I would make sure I knew that they can be very convenient and useful in saving money on gas. However, I would make sure I knew about the minimal interaction with other people and that it can become very depressing. Next, class choice is very important. Many professors are not qualified to teach their own class and examining this is important before choosing. Finally, I would make sure I attempted to get more scholarships. I was very lazy in high school and now I have to pay for all of my classes. Scholarships are very important. The three things that are to be considered when looking at college are online classes, class choice, and scholarships.

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I would give myself two words of advice before I started my post high school education. The first one being the importance of creating good study habbits. This is important because 95 % of the learning I have done has come from doing work at home or studying on my own outside the classroom. Being a student that seldom did homework in high school this was an exceptionally hard thing for me to learn. The second is to not be afraid to try new things. When I first graduated, I was in a routine where I would go to school, where I would attend the same type of classes I had done all through high school, go to the same job that I had since the summer before my senior year, after which I would go home where I would eat watch some television then go to sleep. I would repeat this routine everyday. This kept things very much like high school for me and I did not enjoy it. A friend suggested I become part of Studend Life and Leadership and everything we did outside of my routine changed my life and made my school experience much more enjoyable.

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How does the cliche go? Hindsight is 20/20. I have always been a subscriber to the school of thought that says that the most valuable knowledge we recieve is obtained through experience. If I could go back in time to the simple high school years I doubt I would have even listened to my present older, wiser, and better looking self (blessedly I no longer part my hair down the center). I've had to be honest with myself and push aside the career pipe dreams of my high school days and take a realistic inventory of my skills and interests: I write well. I like to cook. I've always been a connoisseur of great literature. If I could tell my hard-headed little high school self anything, it would be to not waste time with the unimportant. Video games got me nowhere in a hurry. Dilusions that I will write the great American novel and make hundreds of thousands overnight need to be put aside (not that I'll ever give up on that dream). Though I will write it...one day. In short, I'd tell myself to prioritize and learn as much as possible.

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If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, this is the advice I would give myself: "Miranda, I know you feel like high school is all about friends, socializing, and distractions that seem SO important at this time. However, after graduation, none of this will matter like it does right now. College is full of new experiences, and you should really take some time to prepare. Working and going to school full-time will not be as easy as you think. Therefore, you should begin saving most of your money for college rather than spending it on new clothes every weekend. Take more time to study. Figure out what you want to do in life, and make a clear set of goals. Rather than sitting in class just because you have to, create a sincere interest in every subject by relating them to these goals. Do your best to maintain a high GPA, and take as many college classes as possible while still in high school. This, along with knowing where you wish to go, will save you a generous amount of needed time and money in your future."

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Dear Me, Here's some college advice from the future. Cool, I know. Ok, first, save your money! College is a lot more expensive than you think. Second, your high school counlelor doesn't know everything. You have to find information about colleges and scholarships youreslf. They are a good place to start but the rest is up to you. Third, don't do what everyone else is doing. Take classes you want and join the clubs that you want. After high school, everyone will go their own way. Make sure you know what way you are going to go. Fourth, spend time getting to know your teachers. They may seem crazy now, but you will look back and realize you could have learned a lot from their life experiences. Plus, when it comes time for them to write a letter of recommendation, they will know more about you so they can write a better letter. Last but not least, don't procrastinate those due dates! Just do it! If you don't have time to fill out an application right now, schedule a time to do it so you don't forget. Good Luck! Love, Me.

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I would tell myself to study daily! Take the time to make good study habits and get homework done. I would also tell myself to take as many concurrent enrollment and AP classes as you can so you've got a jump start in your college career. Another thing I would say is to apply for any and all scholarships available. They can pay for anything school realated whether it be books, a laptop, tuition, once the money is you're you can spend it basically how you like; and college can be expensive. Don't think that because you've got it made with tution, etc. that you won't have to sacrifce more of your time and money than anticpated. Be prepared for whatever lies ahead. Keep your options open and take classes in several areas to found out your own personal niche. And once you find your niche, stick with it and don't waste your time and money on classes that won't help you get a degree. Also, try to get good scores on your ACT, SAT, and other placement tests and get your name to as many colleges and universities you're intersted in.

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Be organized. Nothing can be more damaging to your efforts than a cluttered backpack/bedroom/folder. I've also learned that I should always keep the assignments given back to me, because sometimes the professors make a mistake and you need to prove your grade. Also keep old assignments/tests if you know the class will have a comprehensive final -- also, FIGURE OUT if your class has a comprehensive final or not, because those classes tend to take a little more effort or be just plain harder than some others; others may not even have a final, or any tests at all. This is a need to know THE FIRST DAY. And don't be shy to email your teachers, they're there to help you... but some are not helpful or nice, it's who they are, and that's a life lesson not just a school lesson. It's also good to make friends in your classes, no matter the class. It's not only helpful for that course, but ypically those people will continue to take other classes you need, or have already taken classes you will take later on. Don't be shy!

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