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South Mountain Community College

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

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would have given myself so much advice about what to expect in college. The very first piece of advice I would offer would be to cut back on the amount of hours I worked and instead put those hours into community service and school activities. My time would have been better invested into those things and it would have given me an edge when applying for scholarships. I also would have told myself to talk to my counselor about the financial aid programs available at the University of Arizona so that I would be able to attend after graduation instead of a community college. I would have explained the importance of keeping my head in my books instead of working too much or hanging out with friends. I would have instilled the importance of applying for scholarships and being more persistent in my desire to attend U of A. But most of all I would have told myself that it was time to grow up and become an adult because there is no room for immaturity in college life.

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I would have told myself that college life is fun, and you have alot more freedom than you have in high school but you have to keep your priorities straight and use your time wisely. More importantly than anything though i would have told myself that I have to be totally self motivated, with a plan and goals to strive for because no one is pushing you to go to class or do your homework or study for your exams like in high school. I would have told myself that once i reach this point i'm in control of how far i want to go, because you have to make the effort to talk to your advisor's and ask questions about what scholarships opportunities are available to you or what classes you have to take in order to work your way towards completing your degree and putting yourself in a postion to suceed in rewarding career that your interested in and passionate about. More so than anything i would have kept telling myself that these next however many years would be the most important in my life in deciding how successfull I'll ultimately be.

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As a high school senior I was excited to be entering into my college years. I originally went to Ivy Tech State College in Indiana full time. I started slacking, majorly. The fact that I was paying for college with mutual funds left by my Grandmother there were no rules to stay enrolled like there is with financial aid. So, I did poorly when I would actually go. Resulting in being dropped because of numerous absences and left with nothing to show for all the money spent. I then went to another college and did the same thing. Once realizing this is something I NEED in life I applied for financial and started attending every scheduled class on time and trying my hardest. I didn't realize the importance of ataining higher education as I do now. I should have told myself that in my life not going to college isn't an option. Not only because I am passionate about the degree in which I am slowly achieving but also because there isn't any reason one should pass up the opportunity to be able to learn and grow in a safe environment.

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First, I would tell myself, what am I thinking wearing that. I'll tell myself that if i think being a high school senior is hard just wait until I get into college. Things will much harder and cost alto of money. I would tell myself not to go straight into college right after high school. I should take a break and decided if going into college is what I really want to do if so what do I really want to do, whats my interest, because I cant just waste my time taking classes I have no interest in taking because at the end of the day that's wasting money. Finical aide is not for every. I would also tell myself to apply for college out of state so that I can experience how college life is really about. I would tell myself that at times it will get hard. I'll days when I don't want to get out of bed but I will just have to push myself. Push myself to the best of my ability because when I walk on the stage and get my degree its going to be worth it.

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My first piece of advice would be GO CHANGE YOUR MAJOR AND FIRST SEMESTERS SCHEDULE, because it's going to be the start of your hatred for school. I wish I would been as confident then as I am now that creative writing is my passion and is the path I was destined to take. I would tell myself that school is going to be hard but pursuing your true passion will make it all worth it. My biggest regret that I have made is not knowing what all of my options were and just going with the degree path I thought I had to do. Also going from high school to an out-of-town is going to be an extremely hard transition and you have to keep your head about it. Remember why you are there, school, and don't let the distractions of freedom allow you to stray. Most importantly, DON'T PROCRASTINATE! Get what you need to get done and fight every instinct in you to put it off for another time!

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If I could talk to myself as a high school senior, I would motivate myself and change my way of thinking . I was an early graduate and went straight to community college, I did not wait. I was very excited to start college but, I still had the mind set of a high schooler. When I began to start my classes and getting more into the semester, I realized that the teachers are not going to be on my case about attending classes, doing work, and paying attention like teachers did in high school. I really had to get in my mind and tell myself this is my responsibility, my education, and my life; no one is going to be on my back about anything, it is all on me. If I would have known that as a senior in high school, I would not have been in much shock as I was when starting college. That is the advice I would give myself, making sure I'm ready for anything and thinking like an adult.

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If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself not to quit school. I quit school about three months before graduation. I finally recieved my high school diploma in August of 2011. I got to participate in the graduation ceromony in June of 2012 and I graduated with honors. I wish more than anything that I would have done it all back in 1998 with all my friends. I am attending college now and trying to get an associates degree in radiology. Being thirty-three years old, working, married and a house full of children, it is not easy. I am very proud of what I have accomplished, but it has really been hard. It's been so long since I've been in school. I'm having to learn things all over again because I can't remember them. I think about the career I could've had if I had only stayed in school and finished all those years ago.

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Learn how to study; you only think you know how to study. Your methods are inefficient and will not cut it in the big leagues. You also need to enjoy the senioritis while you can and accept the fact you'll need to buckle down once college starts. You are more than capable of excelling in your studies, you just have to believe in yourself. On top of everything, relax. Things will work out for the better even if you take a few detours over rough terrain. It may seem hopeless, but you'll make your way through like you always do. Your patience and perseverance will ultimately pay off and your dream of becoming a pharmacist will eventually be within reach. Best of luck to you, and enjoy it; they will be your best years.

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All in all, I believe I made the right decision to attend a community college instead of a four year college or university. Education expenses these days are outrageous and I strongly encourage others to attend a community college before and save money. Advice I would give myself is apply for financial aid, scholarships, and grants as much as you can. I had recieved a athletic scholarship and an academic scholarship while attending school there which helped, but I feel as if I would have applied for scholarships, I could have got my school paid for to save up for my next educational experience.

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At this point in my life I need to buckle down and focus on applying for scholarships and college. I need to look into the options that I enjoy as a major and find out the requirements needed for that major. Also, find a school that you find interesting and has your major with a program or internship to go with it. Jump into financial aid information and sign up for FAFSA. Get all the neccesities done for college and since you are in the ACE program, get all of your prerequisites out of the way. Do not stress about anything, relax and get ready for the transition.

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