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University of Portland

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What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

That tuition gets more and more expensive every year and they still can't give out more financial aid. Almost every student at the University of Portland gets financial aid from the school and some private scholarships, but financial aid does not increase with tuition. I wish I had known how much work coursework is involved for engineering classes. A majority of high school is very easy and does not take nearly as much time as college homework. In college, you really do spend two or more hours doing homework for every hour you are in class.

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I wish that I had known that the Psychology program mainly focused on reasech rather than a split emphasis in clinical and research psychology. I really appreciate having the research background, but personally I am more interested in clinical psychology. I also wish that the school was a little bigger. I find that University of Portland is too close to the size of a large high school. I would prefer to go to a school that has about 5,000 students rather than 3,400 students. This characteristic is more prominent as I become an upper-classman.

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I wished I had actually set foot on compus before coming here. I would have then realized how a small school actually feels and how the Catholic tradition and conservative majority permeate the academic and social environment. One one hand, I do like having small class sizes. However, being in a campus with a small population of students, I found it hard to reach out to those who have similar interests. I sense with the conservative attitudes people display, they may find it hard to consider and even accept traditionally liberal views.

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I wish I would have known exactly what I wanted to study before I came to the University of Portland. I have switched majors a couple times and I am currently double majored but if I were to go back and start school over I would probably be in a different major/field altogether. Also I wish I would have known how important it is to establish productive academic and social habits from the beginning. It is important to extend beyond your comfort zone, to participate in activities, and meet as many new people as possible.

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Before choosing to attend the University of Portland, I wish I would have known about the lack of dorm community. Part of me really counted on making a lot of my friends through my dorms. My dorm feels like a hotel, where no one comes out of their rooms and not many people attend the dorm activities. A few of the other dorms have a more communal feel, but overall most students stay in their rooms. Thankfully, the University of Portland offers a required freshman workshop which really helped me make most of my friends.

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I wish I had known how hard it would be to transition to life in college. Everyone only mentions how fun and life-changing college is, however I never really realized until I got to school that I was leaving behind family, friends, and the comfort of home to come here. I am not trying to say that the transition to college life is miserable, I am just saying that the struggles of transitioning should not be ignored. It is often cloudy and rainy here in Portland, and that was hard to adjust to coming from Hawaii.

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I wish I could have known how much I would be doing! Since I've been here I've had opportunities to get involved in almost every club or organization on campus. It really was a shock compared to the small, rural town I grew up in. I would have prepared myself by being involved more in things at home and in high school. Because here, you get exposed to so many opportunities to grow and to live life. Almost anything you are interested in is available, and if it's not you have the power to make it happen.

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I wish I had known it rained so much! I would have brought much more rain gear. Really though, I wish I had known that no matter what everyone says about college being the hardest academic experience you will recieve thus far, that when you love what you do, learning isn't a chore! I absolutely love learning about the human body, and I cannot wait to use this information in real life. I would have told myself to not be afraid of the work, but rather throw myself whole-heartedly into my academic endeavor.

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Before coming to this college, I would have loved to know all of the different services that the school has to offer. As weeks gone by, I kept finding out the different help centers all around school. Some of these centers include the Career Center, Health Center and different things that the Pamplin Business school offers. It could have been due to the lack of research that I have conducted on my end, but by knowing some of the services that they have, I would have started my year a little differently.

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I wish I would have known about the orginzation of the school and how the food system works. I also wish I would have known how to get a job in the libarby because that was the job I really wanted. I also wish I would have known how kind everyone is and how focused the University is on nursing and engineering and how many credits each class is worth. They are either worth 1 or 3 credits not 4 so students need to take more classes to earn enough credits and it can be overwhelming.

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