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University of Cincinnati-Main Campus

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

College prepares me for what coming ahead in my life. The college experience has given me new ways to counter hard to solve problems and how to critical think in bad situactions. I am majoring in accounting, sometimes I get stress when the numbers does not match up right. The college helps me deal with that and teaches me ways to excel at what I love to do. It is also because of my passion for accounting, I want to continue attending college in pursue of my dream. I want to get my CPA license and open up my own firm one day. I remember my grandfather used to tell me, “Education is the gateway to success; and you can only live better if you have a career.” I went to college in pursue of that career dream. Through hard times in college, I learned that no matter how tough my life gets, I should never give up on my goal. Whenever I fall down, I will climb right back up. As long as I work for it and try my best for it, I believe I will one day grasp that goal and smile.

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If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would let me know that college is a whole new experience. I would tell myself not to joke around with my classes and acually take them seriously. I would let myself know to always ask for help and find out as much as I can. I would also tell myself to learn study habbits and have teachers show me tricks for learning. I would inform me to go to teachers and have them tell you what more you can do and I would have also told myself to take harder classes. And listen to teachers when they say college is harder cause they are speaking the truth. I would also like to tell me that applying for scholarships may be annoying and time consuming but it will be completely worth it in the end, because college is definatly not cheap and every little bit of money helps. Also to have more fun and enjoy freedom as long as you can, cause once you start college, you will see how easy it was to be at Paint Valley.

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If given the chance: live on campus, take AP courses in high shcool, apply for EVERY scholarship you can find & are eligable for. Only live on campus if it is financially feasable and do research on the dorms so you know which one to request (some are run-down, constant "fire drills" while other are new and very clean). Taking AP courses in high school will allow most schools to give you credit for that course if you score well enough on the AP test but even if your college does not, most first-year classes will not go far beyond the AP material which means it will be a review of previously learned material and thus will greatly reduce stress for your first year. Finally, apply for every scholarship you can! Every bit helps and the more you apply for the greater your chances of getting money for college. It may be a pain to fill out what will seem like a never-ending stream of scholarship applications but it will all be worth it if you are granted even one.

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"Rob, don't room with your best friend," I tell myself. "Why do you look so shocked? Is there something on my face?" "Na. . . na. . .no" "Whew, good. I'm heading over to Catie's dorm when were done here!" "What are you doing here? Or, I mean, what, who are you?" "I'm you, Rob. And I'm here to stop you from making an incredible mistake. You can't room with Dan next year." "What are you talking about! He's my best friend. I don't know anybody else! I can't be alone and surrounded by strangers!" "Yes. Yes you can. And it's exactly what you need. I'm rooming with Dan right now and i feel empty, apart from the rest of the campus. If you room with Dan you'll both be left with just each other. I want you to go to the Unversity of Cincinnati and make an arsenal of friends. Living with Dan will not make you a friend. Right now it's causing you to lose numerous friends neither of us have other met!" "I'll. . .I'll think about it. I need to get back to track practice"

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I would tell myself many things, but most important of all, I believe that I would tell myself to never give up and never turn away from my faith and God. The transition from high school to college is absolutely life changing and filled with opportunities for positive change and negative change. I believe that I would have told myself to never give up and to choose to do the right thing and make college and positive change in my life. I would have told myself to keep up my grades as well, just as I have always done. I would also just encourage myself to never lose hope or faith in people and things, because in life you will be disappointed. But if I choose to see the good in life and in the world and choose to do the right thing, I will make myself truly happy and be the person that I want to be. Always be strong in what you know is right and never do the "easy" thing to get out of a hard situation. Always be a person of integrity and do the right thing.

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I always dreamed of what college was going to be like, and my senior year I was so excited to finally go to college. I had a certain vision of what college was going to be like, and now that I am in college, my expectations were a bit off. Just like I thought, college would be different than high school, but it is in a different way than I thought. Of course college is about new found independence and hard work, but it is more than that. It is about finding what makes you happy and what you want your life to be like. Of course the education one receives at college is very important and crucial to obtaining a career, but the lessons one learns outside the classroom are also very important. If I could go back to senior year and give advice I would say: do not be afraid to try different things, it is okay to change your mind about things if what you are going is not making you happy. I would say that college is about finding the life you want to have.

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I have a couple of different pieces of advice for students when they are looking for the right college. First, I would try to find a friend to stay with at the college you are looking at. Try to get the actual student feel of the school. While the student tours are nice and give you an idea of the school, shadowing a student/ friend would give you the best feel for it. Another piece of advice is make sure you are deciding for yourself. Do not base your choice of colleges off your friends. Lastly, even if you do not get into your first choice school, give your second or even third choice a try. Be open to new ideas and experiences. I went to my second choice school and would not change it for the world. Get involved on campus. There are so many different opportunities for you in college: sports, clubs, volunteering, sororities, fraternaties, tutoring, and many others. Getting involved will help you to meet many people and make college fun and enjoyable!

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If I could go back in time and speak to my high school self I would shout to her to get herself together. An important period in your life is about to begin and it is okay to be confused and not know what to do, but calm down and take life one step at a time. There will be allot of important deadlines and many important choices you will have to make, but in the mist of all the chaos that seems to be slowly consuming your life you will find yourself and what you really want to pursue in life. You can no longer just drift by in life and still do well it is time for you to roll up your sleeves and get to work. Although it may seem like you have all the time in the world, you don’t. If you do not work hard now you will look up one day and realize the huge mistake you made by not grasping and fully embracing the path of higher education. So get focused, buckle down, and get ready for the ride, because it is a long one filled with many bumps in the road.

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If I could give advice to myself as a high school senior, it would be to keep my priorities straight and to focus on the future instead of the present. Back then, I was more worried about friends, boyfriend, etc. I did go to college straight of high school, but I didn't take it seriously at all. Now, six years later; I am a single mother trying to go to school and work full time just to secure a better future for me and my child. That boyfriend and most of those friends from six years ago is nowhere to be found. Now it's just me and my daughter that I have to worry about and I have my priorities very well in order. Still, I wish that I would have finished school way before now so that I would be financially stable. I would give this advice to anyone as a senior in high school because it is very easy to get wrapped up in the things that won't matter years from now. You have to worry about your future and focus on the things you want in your life.

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If I had to give myself any advice about the transition to the college experience, I would definitely have told myself to take a ton of AP classes to get a head start and save money when I enrolled at a university. There's not much other than that that one can do to prepare for the college experience. Sure, dorm life is a bit different from living in a room with my siblings, but the lack of privacy is still there. And, the course work at the university is not much more difficult, at least in the first year, from what I encountered in high school. Some of the classes I took in high school were more advanced than my first year classes! So I guess the best advice would have been to relax about the whole thing. It was not the end of the world. It was more like moving a goldfish to a bigger tank. Yes, I had to get reaquainted with the items in the new tank, but the environment was the same. School is school just like a fish tank is just a tank.

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