University of Massachusetts-Boston Top Questions

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

Eva

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, there are many things that I would tell myself. First and foremost, I would assure myself that the college process and the transition will be easier than I have been worrying about. The professors at this school are the most supportive, endeering, and inspiring people who will be eager to help me. Secondly, I would assure myself that I made the right decision in applying to UMass Boston as my first choice school. Although it is a different experience than many other students have because it is a commuter-school, this university allows me to focus on my studies which is my number one priority. I will tell myself that I will step out of my comfort zone by completing internships in different countries and working hard on and off-campus jobs. Throughout my college career, I will go above and beyond to make the most of my studies. Most importantly, I will do this with the love and support from my family and friends. These are the most important people in your life who give you strength and perseverance.

marian

Knowing what I know about college life, I would give myself as high school senior a couple of advices. First I would tell myself quit my part time job! Senior year is the most important year of your life because you need to really focus to make your college and life choices. I would tell myself to pick up the textbooks and read! That’s how you pass your courses in ap and college classes. I would also tell myself not be afraid to go to the teacher to get help! They have gone through all that you are about to go through. Another thing I would tell myself to study and learn honestly! By just doing the work to pass my classes was not the best decision. Finally I would advice myself to maintain balance in life by not stressing over one thing.

Jenny

If I could go back, what I would say to myself when I was a senior in high school is that I am proud of the decisions I've made. The process of applying to colleges was overwhelming (Common App, FAFSA, essay questions), but it was worth it. I am proud of the college that I am currently attending. Knowing that two years had flew by fairly quick is a wonderful experience. I've made new friends, became close to my professors, the diversity of the university, a lot of fun activities happening on campus is something I will not take back. Each student on this campus has been engaged with the school and the clubs have brought each student together. I am proud that I attended a higher education and know what I wanted to study. I am also proud that I got into the program I wanted which brought me one step closer to my goals which is to become a Physician's Assistant. If I look back at myself when I was a young eighteen year-old girl, I would say, I've come so far and I'm one step closer to my goals.

Dorcas

I would tell the high school me, to question authority because adults are not always right. To the teacher who laughed at me and said that in order to go to college one would have to have parents with money and a single mother on welfare won't cut it; I would tell her she is a sad excuse for a motivator and that dreams do come true when you work towards them. I would also tell her that nothing is impossible with God. I would tell me to concentrate on graduating with honors although my mother never had any real expectations of me nor did she project any. I guess it is hard to project what she herself did not accomplish. I would tell the younger me to pray against the odds and let God even all scores. I would tell the younger me to enroll in college and figure out the system. Had I known then what I know now, I could have possibly inspired other family members my age to attend college. If I had known then what I know now, my entire family would have experienced change on a generational level.

Jennifer

With everything that had gone on within my last year of high school I would have to say "Prepare for the classes you'll be taking a semester ahead." This may sound odd to many and maybe unnecassary but a lot of students including myself struggle to keep work and school at an equal stance. Meaning that I need to figure out a juggling act and it's difficult when you go to school and work full time. Secondary advice would be experiement with how to study because my first year in college was tough to figure out how I study and can stay still for more than an hour. Go places, see things, check out what works best for you with how you study. I know with how I currently study, it may be bizaar but it works. Thirdly, try studying and working on homework in places that aren't at home. I say this because everything is at your finger tips at home where you are comfortable. Make an effor to go somewhere where you can master the art of studying regardless of how distracted you may get.

Yeide

If I could go back in time and tell myself as a high school senior, it would be to be passionate about school. High school is so much easier, college you need to be passionate to go and learn. I would also tell myself to enjoy it, and meet people. I have met really interesting teachers that have guided me to the path that I want to take. I would tell myself to listen to others. College is about independence, but I would tell myself to not get carried away. Most important, I would advise myself to focus on what I want, nursing, and to not let any distractions get me to take a different path.

Stephanie

I wish I knew in high school that sometimes when you plan and map out the way your life is supposed to go, it doesn't always happen the way you pictured. When I was a high school senior I set my sights on getting my bachelors degree in nursing at Fitchburg State University. I was devastated when financial and academic problems prevented me from fulfilling this dream. I thought I would never achieve my goals or be as happy as I once was at FSU. Three years later, I am enrolled in health science at UMass Boston and pursing a career in physical therapy. I am twice as happy as I was at FSU and determined to make this dream come true. I wish I knew that my inability to fulfill my original goal was not actually a failure, but a learning process that brought me to where I am today.

Conor

I got a full scholarship to a State School, but its hard to transfer and to keep up the gpa with bad professors at the state school. I would have been better off to take colleges that had my major and offered a large scholarship but not a full scholarship. In fact with the financial aid which doesn't come till after your accepted I would have been paying way less than what is in the offer letter. It would have been more managable and I would have ended up learning more , taking the courses I needed instead of trying courses to bring up gpa again due to bad Professors and trying to get better lecturers in subjects I don't need ening up paying money on courses I don't need because the lectures at the schoool are not good in my major but are good professors in other subjects. Check schools with majors for you and use Rate my Professor.com for your major . On transerrring you get way LESS scholarship unless you have a high GPA , which is hard when you have bad professors teaching and the tests relect nothing that you have done in the class.

Kandus

Traveling back in time to visit myself as a high school senior, I would have so much advise to give! First thing I would have to advise myself to stay the course and continue with school, the knowledge that you possess right out of high school does dim as the years go by. There would also have to be great advise about the different programs and organizations that can help boost your education giving a massive advantage to an awarding education. And one that could create a great future.

Axel

Hello, young human male. First of all, financial aid. Watch as many of your friends in college take out two student loans, buy guitars, and then forget about school. Take note of this, as it will help in your academic success. I don't mean to tell you to take mirth in others financial irresponsibility. Just take note of it. Furthermore, stick to one thing and get a degree. It does not matter whether you like it or not, a degree is a degree and you can always go back to school. Study your butt off. Seriously. The reason people get bad grades is not because the instructor is mean or hard to understand. They just didn't study. Learn on your own time. Seriously, it helps a lot to figure out what you want to do. Beef up on your mathematics skills and read a book a month. Last but not least, if you don't like the course you are on, switching majors is always an option. Just keep in mind that moving from major to major means that you will always have to retake prerequisites that you may not like. You are worth it. You can succeed.

Idalin

It’s very important that when entering college that you take things slowly and you pick the right amount of classes that you feel that you can handle. You don’t want to feel extremely overwhelmed with the coursework load because students also have jobs and families they to attend too as well. Make sure that the when choosing a school you feel comfortable with the community so that you’re able to get all the right resources you need to succeed. Never feel scared to ask someone for help if needed because there nothing better than asking someone for help who is willing to guide you and help you achieve.

Conor

I would say to check the scholarships when you get accepted to colleges, if some of them are without maintaining a GPA, then these are probably better taking these and if you try to apply as a transfer student to those same schoold you will get less money. I would have been better to accept some of the other colleges even though I had a full tuition scholarship to UMASS Boston, as now as they only have a 2 year engineering program, I need to transfer but will get less scholarship money as a Transfer student to most othere schools.

ismaelle

Attend more events and work harder at finding a job on campus instead of just staying unemployed.

Helena

Looking back at my high school years, I realize that I didn't take my education as seriously as I should have , at times. I wouldn't really change anything I did as a high school senior because that was my best high school year and I really focused on my college process so that I wouldn't regret any choices later. The only thing I would advise my old self is to stay away from procrastination. In high school it didn't seem like such a big deal because if you looked to your left and right, everyone was doing it ; it was so common that it felt like the normal thing to do. It's something I still struggle with but that I have more control over now because I truly realize the value of my education.

Ametide

To stay focus, study and work hard because when you work hard it pays off.

jessica

When I was in high school getting ready for the big move I became scared and stayed. I wanted to stay home because it was comfortable, I knew what to expect and it was not risky in any way. I completed two years at the community college while working for my current employer. I became lured by money and took on work full time thinking I would be set. Looking back I would tell myself a few things, one do not ever be afraid of taking chances because the bigger the chances the bigger the rewards and that by not making changes it would make it hard for myself to grow. I would tell myself that in the long run the money meant nothing that it had no value and eventually working seems like nothing but a way to collect a paycheck. We spend a good majority of our time working so why not be in a position to love what you do and not have to close any doors but to succeed only as much as you want. I would tell myself that college is the best thing you can do for yourself mentally, financially and professionally.

Ismaelle

I would advice myself not to have high expectations for college life because it hard work and not glamarous especially when your a communter. I also would suggest that I apply to more state schools so I could have more affordable options.

Sarah

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who are alive.” – Howard Thurman Senior year, I would need to hear this quote. It means to follow your heart and go with it and everything else will fall into place. I would tell myself to pay attention in senior year to certain topics that interest me, and research to see if I could turn that into a study or profession. The transition between high school and college may be difficult at first. Organization can be key. I would inform myself to stay on task now that you have more freedom in class and to pay attention every step of the way. Make sure to study for every test even if you know beforehand that a professor will drop one test grade. Always attend class, even when you know all the students will not be present. Professors will pay attention to who comes to class, and you may need their assistance at the end of the semester. Keep your head up and never get discouraged.

Patrick

Don't give up.

Caitlin

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior about college life and making the transition into college I would tell myself just to live life to the fullest, but don’t get in trouble. I have always been shy, but I wish that in the beginning of going to my community college that I had reached out to more people and tried to make new friends. Not to say that I didn’t make new friends because I did, but not until my second year and now I am about to transfer. I would tell myself not to worry about acting cool because college students are pretty chill and accepting of anyone. Hopefully when I transfer to my new college I will not be so shy. Also I would tell myself to make more time for studying. Even though I get great grades I have realized that I can never study enough, and order to succeed in my career field of becoming a veterinarian I need to study constantly. Overall I would tell myself to balance out social and student life because both are important in becoming a well rounded citizen.

Erica

Through my college experience I have gained a level of knowledge that is very competitive. I was able to gain knowledge within my major area of study, but also knowledge about the surrounding community. I have also gained work and research experience that is unprecidented. My college experience has taught me to have an open mind about different cultures and society. I have also learned a level of confidence within myself. I truly appreciate being able to not only take on studies that were required by the major I chose, but I was also able to take on studies that I am truly passionate about. UMass Boston has enabled me to do both and I will forever be grateful for that.

Sheila

Through my college education so far, the most valuable thing I have gained is an acceptance and understanding of humanity as a whole. Through work in population genetics, cultural anthropology and human biological variation seminars, I appreciate the cultures of other peopel all around the world. I know that in truth, though we all vary greatly, all people are cousins, descended down the same family tree. Wars, global conflics and religious differences all serve to make us feel disconnected from one another but it is important to love and respect everybody even if they seem different. this is the most vital and life changing information I have gained and I was really disappointed that this was never taught in primary education.

Chelsea

Above everything else I got out of college a new sense of self confidence has made the biggest difference in my life. Due to the success I have experienced in school, I feel much better about my overall quality of life. I had suffered through severe depression in the earlier part of my life mainly 17-22, and was hospitalized and didn't start school til later. Since going to school I have found that side of my personality radically changed. I am more upbeat in my general social life, and have a more positive view on future prospects.

Alysha

So far as a sophomore in college I have learned a few simple things that they do not prepare you for. In college you find out who you really are or aren't for that matter. You find out what you like and do not like and most importantly how to handle situations like the people that you are forced to call your roommates. You find that if you can count your true friends on one hand that’s all you need to get by. You soon discover what will make or you break you. My college experience so far has helped me begin the process of finding who I am through failure and success. It has helped me realize what is truly important and drinking is not what it’s cracked up to be. That having a 3.0 is better than having the ability to out drink your roommate. Although though my college years are still being written I am in excited to find out what this experience will make me in the end.

Stephanie

From my college experience I've received a huge dose of real life. I've learned that things can change very quick. I've learned it's easy to be stuck someplace where you are not happy, like I was when I was attending a school in Vermont. I also learned that with hard work you can bring yourself out of any situation, although maybe not on the first try. I did a semester at a community college before I was allowed to transfer to Umass Boston, and I think it was from my struggles that I am so happy and proud of Umass and the education that I can work towards while here. I see kids in my classes who are dealing with troubles that are ten times worse than I thought mine were, but what we have in common in that we didn't give up. We can accomplish as much as we try for; I know this from my college experience, which was also the longest year of my life. I can't wait to graduate Umass, but I know I'll miss it. Hopefully I can continue my education there in Graduate school. Thank you.

Diane

Great education, wonderful faculty and student body.. Overall a great experience.

Amanda

It has made me better for the future and learned so much about my major and what I want to do with my life. I have made so many great friends and have teachers that only want to see me succeed and grow!

Salma

When I first applied to this university the one thing that stood out was its diversity. In fact, the school rep that interviewed me was hispanic. I myself am from arab origin with multiple family members living around the world so this diversity was welcoming. My freshmen year at Umass I made some friends with pakistanis, somalis, arabs and numerous students with different origin. I immidiatly felt a sense of belonging. The conversations with all these different type of people were enlightining as I learned about their cultures and attanded their events. The professors were also very diverse , ranging from liberal iranians and indians to conservative westerners. The intellectual level is also high. I love attending lectures and workshops where I feel so much more exposed than what a class room can offer me. There is always a conversation happening, whether its from student clubs who share their thoughts on somethig they feel strongly about or professors sharing their academic work outside of the classroom. I could not have picked a better place to learn and meet all kinds of interesting individuals who inspire you to want to explore the globe.

Linda

There was a major transition from high school to college. I was not only taught in classes with about 20 students but in classes of 400 as well. Yes it involved different techniques in order for me to handle thoses classes, but regardless because of the sizes, I was able to gain new friends. You won't be in the same classes for a whole year but just sitting there turning to your right or to your left, you can easily make friends even if they were total strangers. That's just how life is. I used to be very shy and awkward around new people, but college opened me up a bit. Sometimes you can't just sit there alone and struggle over a problem by yourself, there is always someone around that can help. As a result, this experience I received from college changes me for the better; I talk to people randomly when I need help and sometimes we even become friends. One word, "networking," I was able to build a network of people that can help me in all sorts of ways.

Anthony

My experience at a Community college has been a learning experience. I have learned how to time manage my homework, studying for tests, as well as recieving a balanced amount of physical activity. Attending a two year college enabled me to establish myself as a student in preparation for my desired career. I plan on attending a four year university to study electrical engineering, to prepare me for a career within the department of defense.

Bethany

During the last year in college I have learned to overexaggerate my work. I tend to either write too much or add to much to my projects. My grades end up low in the process. Its okay to have alot to say and be creative. But sometimes you have to just keep things plain and simple. When I go out into the work field my boss may have guidelines as to how much is too much.

rachel

I hope to receive a degree that will aid in my pursuit for a career in child psychology.

aquitta

i dont start ti monday4th but i know i will gain alot out of it i really like going to school

Nicole

At UMass, I learned how to balance everything in my life--work, school, family, friends, etc. Of course, the educational benefits are expected, as I graduated with a Bachelor's and am still academically pursuing a higher education. Starting off at UMass enabled me to begin my "real" life with little overhead debt and that is actually a rather large factor as to how I was able to attend Ross University to pursue my veterinary degree (a DVM). I learned different social skills, how to interact with mature professional students, how to network within my field, and even how to manage my time better (a big help when pursuing a professional degree). Because of my start at UMass, I am able to pursue my dreams even further.

Edith

College experience, is a one in a life time experience, everyday in college is a new day to learn the differentpoints of view of life.and I just want with Gods Help make my dreams came tru and , and be somebody in this life and help my mom in the future as she help me today, but unfortunaly she dosen't have the money to help me but she is working hard with me to help to find the best future for me.

Carenyssa

From the beginning of the school year, I have been one of the students to wander about in the halls searching for something to do in my free time. I haven't met many people but i have learned a few things. You must go in search for activities, clubs, and organizations if you want to meet more people. I have also learned that assignments should not be left for last minute especially essays because professors and or instructors do not change due dates and when a due date comes up you must be ready with the work. They do not except late work. It has been valuable to attend because going to college was my decision in hope of having a better future to offer for myself and for my children in the future. The college experience has been great and at the same time awkward.

Shayna

My college experience has given me insight into a world of diversity that I had never been exposed to before arriving here. The University of Maryland, College Park prides itself on its ethnic, racial, and religious diversity, and rightfully so: The campus is pulsating with different cultures that all thrive together. Students all come together to celebrate cultural holidays, whether they are going to Chabad for a Passover Seder or throwing paint with the Indian student group to celebrate Holi. The genuine joy with which the campus comes together to celebrate its diversity is inspiring, and has fundamentally changed my understanding of where I stand in the world and my community. Now, having experience so many different cultures, I feel more open-minded going into the "real world." I am much more prepared to interact with all sorts of people, because I have gained a cultural sensitivity that I will not lose. It is said that once your mind expands with a new idea, it can never contract; it also holds true that once your heart expands to love another person, you can never go back to where you stood before.

Mark

Being close to the city has surrounded me with diverse individuals that tolerate others and welcome anyone as a friend regardless of their differences. I have made great friends here that even after their graduation, we remain the best of friends. I am still amazed by how easy it is to talk to people and grow friendships every where I go on campus. I have learned so much since I started here that I have second thoughts of transferring anywhere else in concern of choosing a lesser school. In short I wouldn't exchange my time here for any party school or similar universities.

Keren

I have no attend college yet, But I know that it will be a new experience and exciting one as well. It will get me to my future.

Rebekah

Once I started college I saw myself change. I gained more confidence in myself. I have always been the quiet one in school but after my first semester in college I began speaking up more in my classes and joining in the disscusions. I love the classes I have taken and enjoy learning. I know every class I take leads me closer and closer to my dream of majoring in Kinesiology.

Julia

So far my college experience has not lived up to my expectations when I was first entering. The classes seem at the same level as my high school ones, and a lot of the material I have already learned. But just that has been a rewarding experience in itself, I'm miserable at the school I'm at now, but that has pushed me to search for other options, ones that will make me happy, and give me the rewarding experience I am looking for. I am currently enrolled at the University of Hawaii at Manoa in the Zoology for the Fall of 2010. I am extremely excited to start the next phase of my college career and feel that if not for attending UMass Boston first I would have never been pushed to attend the University of my dreams, in a field that I have always had a passion for.

Ashley

I've been out of school for about nine years now. So I will be starting school next month after a nine year break. I hope to get back into it slowly. I'm attending ITT-Tech in the Criminal Justice program. I'm excited about going, this will be something new for me. The curriculum sounds intense but interesting at the same time. What I hope to get out of this college experience is the knowledge and tools I can use to pursue my career in Homeland Security or becoming a Criminal Investigator. With the courses I'll be taking along with the hands on training I feel this will benefit me in the future. I researched a number of schools for criminal justice and this school in particular stood out because ITT-Tech brings in police officers, people that work for the FBI, and other fields of criminal justice to let you know what you can expect once you receive your degrre. That 's why I feel it is valuable and essential for me to attend this school and get knowledge I need to further my career.

HANNAH

The most valuable educational experiences that I have had since entering college have been my study abroads. I was able to study in Greece and in England. I learned more at these places in the short time I was there than I did in my 3 years at my school in the states. They are truly masters of their profession, especially for my major (Ancient Studies/Classical Languages and Archaeology.) The scholars that I have met and been able to interact with have been extremely enlightening both intellectually and emotionally. They reconfirmed time and again my passion and desire for classical studies and ancient history. I have also learned that in order to truly understand other people, cultures, and places one must first understand the history that has influenced them all. These experiences have helped me learn that if more professors showed passion and encouragement while teaching less people would be changing their majors. This is one thing that I will aim to change once I receive a teaching position. If the student sees that their major is worth the work then they will be more apt to pursue it aggressively.

Christina

I transfered to Umass Boston from a private school within Boston and I think that it is the best decision I have ever made in my life. I wish I had known what I know now about the differences between private schools and state schools besides the price difference. I strongly feel that teachers at state schools are actually interested in teaching you rather than private schools where I feel that the teachers just see the dollar signs and not a person. Teachers at Umass Boston take more time out of their class to help you understand better and make sure you understand before moving forward to a different topic. I am glad I started at a private school because I definitely got the college life aspect out of it, but I do not feel I got the best education I could have gotten for the money I was spending. By transferring to Umass Boston I have actually fallen in love with learning again. And you are also offered much more classes than could ever be offered at a private school.

Ben

There are 3 main things I would make sure to tell myself before going to college from high school. First, meet new people by being friendly and being involved. Just because you meet someone does not mean you have to be best friends forever; but you will never know unless you give it a shot. Second, stay organized and prepared. Schoolwork especially is much easier to keep track of and plan out if you stay on top of it and make sure you know what to do, when to do it, and how much time it will take. Lastly, be sure to take complete advantage of any neccessary services your college offers. This includes financial aid, academic advising, job fairs, etc. because not only are these programs/services obviously helpful, but you are paying a significant amount of money for an education and all that it includes. Actually, a fourth and finaal piece of advice, which can be applied to almost all facets of life, is to stay open minded and be accepting of others. This is key for the real world just as much as the college world.

Laura

If I were able to go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would have a completely different stradegy for making the transition into college life. First, I would be more focused on my education. I would spend less time trying to fit into the college atmosphere. College isnt about partying and socializing. College is about your education and goals. It is important to have a social life, but school work should be your first priority. It is also important to analyze your likes, dislikes and goals before choosing a college and choosing a major. Don't be afraid to try something that intrests you. If there was any advice I could give to myself as a high school senior it would be to get involved. Participate in extra curricular activitites. Stay busy. Also, take advantage of the resources your at your school. Have fun with your education and try not to stress. The college experience is different for everybody. Your success is determined by your efforts and participation.

Nhu

?That?s not the right way to do it?, ?you can?t do it like that?, ?you must follow the instructions? these are phrases that you?re often heard in high school saying by many teachers. In high school teachers want you to do things in a certain way, they regulate your creativity and freedom but ensure that you will successfully complete the assignment. They hold your hand and guide you step by step until the task is complete, during those times you might feel furious thinking that you have no freedom to do things in your way. College is different, when the professor hand you the assignment you can complete it in any way that make you fell comfortable, however, you?re responsible to ensure that the method that you choose to use will produce an accurate result. You have the freedom to do anything in your way, but that freedom come with a big responsibility. Therefore the only advice that I could offer is for you to master everting that you learn from your teachers and prepare to do it on your own when you reach college. You will make it through if you could do that!

Maria

Be careful and don't let anyone get in your way to becoming what you want to do. Just relax and be yourself.

Taisha

The advice I would give myself is have all your thingsin order. Don't wait until the last minute to apply to schools and fill out the FASFA. I learned that the sooner you get that out of they way the better. Also apply yourself usually you might have a few test, a midterm and a final. Makeal those grdes count. Studying is key, its the only way to get the proper grade. College is nothing ike high school, everything counts so much more. I've learned that you are basically defined y number, your gpa. I would say to mae sure that number is as high as you can make it. It sounds like a lot of work but in the end it ill pay off big time.

Kristina

to relax

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