University of Southern Mississippi Top Questions

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

Claire

I have gained knowledge and maturity regarding both my field and life in general. It has fostered a deeper desire to achieve my dreams and push myself to the utmost level.

Kimberly

Most people view college as just something to do after high school but I viewed my college experience as a new beginning. My view of college was that all my dreamswould now become a reality. When you think of college experience you think of the parties, greek organizations and freshman mixers but for my college experience included getting married and having my first child. That was my college experience, as I held my future in my hands, prepared for my future as an educator. Most people would say that I missed the parties, pledging and hanging out but I grasped what was really important about the college experience. A true sense of life and preparing for the future through academia.

Jessica

So far I have gotten several things out of my college expirience. Mainly time management has become an every day practice. You learn very quickly that if you can't keep a organized schedule you'll never make it. Second, I have learned independence. It is really nice to be your own person and do what you want, when you want to! It has also made me realize how much my family means to me. Once they aren't in your face constantly, you realize that the time with them was really pleasant and wish you hadn't taken it for granted. I think college is a great expirience. It is a huge part of self discovery. Not to mention the outstanding education I have recieved in just a month!

Kirsten

I have met different people from different backgrounds. College is a way of extending your education and being here is just what I have done. I have learned about school,people, the world and everything esle one can imagine

Shira

Going to college has given me the ability to see views I never thought I would. Growing up where I did, I only heard certain ideals talked about, and I felt out of place; however, at USM, I feel like I belong. Sure, I have my quirks, but so do my friends. I can bring up subjects without fearing a tongue lashing. To have that freedom is the greatest value USM has given me. I know the job at the end will also be of value, but a job is nothing without a solid, educated mind to use.

Tomieka

I think anyone that goes to college, or that are currently in college, would agree that college is the most wonder experience of a life time. One becomes more open to everything around them. One meets tons of new people and makes lots of new friends. One real becomes comfortable with him/herself. By going to college one learns there is more to life and there is more out there than the eye can see. One stops waiting and putting things off, because in college you are most likely to forget about what you are suppose to be doing. College is fun and exciting but one learns there is more to life than fun and games. Attending college has been very valuable and it not only helped me out, but I can also help my younger sister get ready for college. If i could talk to myself when i was back in high school, I would inform myself to get better prepared for college and apply for as many scholarships as possible.

Lucinda

A bachelors degree and it has been valuable in that it was a prerequisite to graduate school.

lacy

I did'nt have the trouble of debating what i want to be "when i grow up" because I always knew. I've wanted to be a speech-language pathologist for as long as I can remember. However, paying for college has been the problem. I'm the oldest in my family and I don't feel like I had the privileges that the younger ones have had. It's partly my fault because I didn't do too much research, but I thought with my grades/ACT score that I would have a great deal of grants/scholarships. I need all I can get, and though I'm a little late in the game, I'm glad i found this website. My dreams would be unreachable without a college degree. My father always told me that it's important to love what you do, no matter if you're a doctor or a garbage man. The doctors go through all of the greuling school to do what they love, that's what I'm here to do. College has been so valuable in so many ways. I know it's a time I'll never forget.

Anthony

My college experience has been very rewarding for a variety of reasons. Not only has it allowed me to build lasting and meaningful relationships with the people I attended with but I was given the opportunity to gain valuable experience and knowledge to prepare me for entering the 'real world'. I believe that the more educated a person can be on any subject provides better preparedness to tackle problems and acheive goals. Attending college was a way for me to learn different techniques and how to apply these techniques to better my skills once I graduated. I could have chosen to enter the workforce straight out of high school and maybe I would have done just fine. But I feel it has been a valuable experience to attend college since it provided me another step in the long staircase of my professional life.

nicole

getting to meet people from different walks of life, becomming more responsible, sense of independency, how to deal with life obstacles

Katherine

I have received a great education and made great friends. Also, I have been advised by professors that really care about where I end up after college. Attending has been worth every penny. Everything I need in this city is close by. I really feel as though I am doing something big with my life and working to achieve everything I have ever dreamed of. The journey to excellence has been a memorable experience!

Jerrie

College has always been valuable to attend in order to gain higher level of education. Not only have I gain higher knowledge I have also learned some valuable real world experiences and skills that will prepare me to enter into the workforce; such as, time management, working well with others, and public speaking. Unlike highschool, in college I can create my own schedule that is right for me. Because of this I have learned to manage my time between classes, work, and home. While attending classes I am surrounded by like minded people who shares the same passion; and, together we work to complete a common goal. And not just in my groups, but also faculties, and numerous other adults I have learned to speak for myself in a clear and convincing manner to get my ideas cross. Just being on campus and participating in class I have learned many life skills that I couldn't get in highschool.

Sandra

My college experience is extremely valuable to me , because it led me to my internship at Stennis (NASA). I know what I want to do with my life because of my college experiences. I believe I am a better person today because I went to college and because, I have gained the knowledge to lead a good life and how to help others. My college experiences have given me confidence and a greater purpose. I know that because of those experiences I am capable of succeeding and I will. My dream is to be a computer programmer and because I am able to get a college education, my dream will come true. Not only have my college experiences helped me find my way in life, but it has given me the opportunity to be a person that my younger brothers can look up to. They know that if I can do it;they can too. My college experiences have given me hope - hope for a better and brighter future. I believe I can make a difference in this world and that feeling alone is a valuable reason to attend college.

Corinne

During my first year of college I learned not only how to balance a social and academic life, but also how to manage money wisely. Because of the economical issues every family faces today, it?s important to not waste money. By going to a community college my first year, I not only got to work and make myself some spending money, but I also saved my parents the expenses of paying for room and board and meal plans. I also learned how important it is to do your best in every class because the classes are expensive and the books add up. I learned to take advantage of every opportunity I had whether it was getting my general classes out of the way before transferring, or signing up for extra credit to help raise my gpa. Essentially, I learned to how important it is to think of every aspect of college, the costs, lifestyle, etc. I know now that when I transfer this upcoming year, I will be both mentally and academically prepared for what lies ahead of me.

Norma

It have encourage me more to achieve my goal

Scarlett

My college experience has given me so much. I have gained new friends, knowledge, and confidence in myself. It has been valuable to attend the University of Southern Mississippi because if I had not, I would never have been inspired to change what I did not like about myself and to use my knowledge and skills to make a difference in the community. The people at USM not only helped me learn in my classes, but they helped me learn what it means to be a better person and servant leader. I arrived thinking college was only about making good grades, but I quickly learned it is also about giving back what you have been given. I have only completed one year of college. However, in this past year I have learned, and I have changed for the better. If all of this can happen in one year, I cannot wait to see what the next three years bring. I know I will leave the University of Southern Mississippi as a much different person then I was when I arrived. I can only hope that I have half as much impact on the University as it has had on me.

ashley

I think that the most valuable experience that I have learned through attending college is finding out my true identity. It may sound corny or rather cliche but college did not help me academically, it helped me establish the kind of person I wanted to be. I was faced with many challenges and questions about my faith in God and other issues and I faced those problems with grace and exhilarance. Through this college experience I found out something that I never knew about myself, I am a fighter. When I say a fighter I mean someone who will not let hardships or obstacles stand in their way. My freshman year I was one of the hardest times of my life because I was forced to make a tough decision, should I drop out of college because I can't afford it or should I do everything in my power to stay in school. The route I chose was not the easiest because I had to work two jobs and go to school full time but I did it and I will continue to do it. I am greatful that I found the celestial fire to keep my dream alive.

Christian

Looking back on the begining of this school year, I remember how anxious I was as a freshman in college. I remember thinking to myself what am I going to do about friends?, are people going to like me?, what are classes going to be like?, and so much more. Now when I think about these thoughts I feel relieved. I can honestly say that I have had the most fun, met the nicest people, had the most success, and over all had the most amazing experience as a freshman at the University of Southern Mississippi. My college experience at this university was exactly what I wanted it to be and more when I thought about college as a high school student. I met so many different people as well as experienced different professors and classes that will help me in the long run. I also learned what it meant to be school spirited. Before I attended Southern Miss I didn't have much school spirit, but attending the many sports events and student activites at Southern Miss changed that quickly for me. I would really just have to say that this college experience truly and honestly made me happy.

Amanda

I have become more self dependent. I live on my own and have to pay my bill as well as make time for my studies. It was hard at first but I have really gotten good at it.

Brittany

I think the experience itself of attending college is wondering full because you get to meet new people and get to learn new things. Attending college is extremely valuable to me. I will make the first person to attend college in my family and I want to better myself and turn out to be very successful in the long run.

briana

What I have gotten out of my college experience is that not everything in college is going to be easy without learning what I could do to excel and be a better student. I had to learn how to readjust my study habitts and in doing so I learned that I am both a visiual and kenestic learner; with that knowledge it help me prepare myself for my classes and the expectations. What I also had to learn was time management and to get my prorities straight. I couldn't just have fun anymore like I use to in high school I had to learn that my studies were more important than going out to the club or partying, this was my future I had to think of. I started to spend my time wisely by studying alot more instead of going out. College is a great experience for me I have learned: how to work in groups, be a leader, and change my studying habitts in doing so I have a better understanding of my studies.

shanjerrica

During this college experience i have learned the values of life as a student. There was many things, such as studying on time and preventing procrastination, I didn't know as a high school student that I know now as a college student. Being in college have taught me to be more social in my life which is a good thing because once I pursue my career in becoming a great pediatrician, being able to communicate well with my patients is a must. Also while attending college I have had the opportunity to voice my opinions on certain subjects such as who should be the next student body presidents and why. Choosing college was the best choice I have made in my life so far. I would have never thought that I would be the one being open minded with peers who are pursuing the same careers and lifetime opportunities as I am. Education is the key to success and failure is not one of my options!

Andrea

Out of my college experience I have made new friends and learned how to manage my time wisely. I have also learned more then I knew before from other people and on my own. I have accomplished more then I have before and going to college helps me be prepared for what is ahead in the future and for my to be ready to live on my own.

Douglas

I would probably say that if you aren't going to have a goal, take basic courses that can apply towards any degree. That is exactly what I did and it will only take me one extra year to get my B.A. in Political Science. Now I have the goal to apply for Law school.

Relda

I would tell myself to enroll in a community college, strive for that 4.0, get that transfer scholarship, and then go to the University of Southern Mississippi, finish your degree in Special Education, and continue to strive for that 4.0, but don't wait so long to do it. Lastly, enjoy the experience while you are there.

Martha

I would know that I would need to stay focused, study hard, and be ready to learn things that I will need to for my career.

Nathan

I would tell myself to study harder and obtain a higher GPA so that I could be accepted into HonorSocieties and receive significantly greater monatary assistance on a consistent basis. I would study and learn math much more efficiently than I did the first go round and tell myself that everything is not just a joke, but instead that ,"for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction," Sir. Isaac Newton

Kathleen

I would tell myself to be prepared for the responsibility of living on your own and maintaining a balance between academics, social life, and overall health. I would tell myself to really listen to and appreciate advice given about organization, time management, networking, determination, and focus. I would tell myself to not be afraid of asking questions and seeking help from professors, friends, tutors, advisors, and mentors. Failure to ask questions can result in getting behind in your studies which creates a dominoe effect as the difficulty level of your studies increases. I would tell myself that while it is okay to enjoy some relaxation time or social time, do not let it occupy your entire day. Time is precious, and you never realize how quickly time disappears until you are juggling work, school, health, extracurricular obligations, and friends all at the same time. I would stress to myself how easy it can be to get stuck in a poor routine of procrastination and laziness and how important it is to seek outside help and motivation if this happens. Utilizing all of your resources is very important. Happiness lies in organization, balance, and doing the best that I possibly can.

Christy

If I could go back to myself as a senior and tell myself anything, I would probably have to tell myself to learn a way to study. I never had to study in high school because it all just came naturally to me and now in college, I don't know how to do it and it's a hard transition. I would also tell myself to learn to be more outgoing and to get ready to meet new people. I would tell myself that there are going to be new people out there and I need to get to know more people and make friends.

Jonathan

I would definately prepare better for college by taking more math, science, and english because no matter your major you have to do well in those coures. I would also stay in regular contact with someone at the university I want to attend so that they can guide you in the career path you want to follow.

Aubree

I would tell my self to go ahead and jump into university life. Do not settle for a junior college because you need to challenge your self, not be complacent. Life is about risks. If they weren't so frightening, more people would take them. Who know's where our world would be today if more people took risks. I would also tell myself to not choose your major course of study based on your passions, or you will learn to hate what you once loved. Choose a course of study based on what academic class you most enjoyed in high school. It's perfectly fine if you decide to change your major.Especially if you were going to double major anyway, and the instructor of your second interest leads you to their field. The last thing I would tell myself is to keep being the teacher's pet. Instructors make valuable mentors and can help you in your studies later on. Don't worry about being called the teacher's pet because you are at college for you, and you need to make sure you are using all of your resources to the fullest extent possible.

Timothy

I would most certainly tell myself to work as hard as hard as I can in my last year and to retake the ACT exam. Although I was really satisfied with my score of 27, I felt that higher would not have only been better, but would have also assisted me in obtaining my scholarships. Speaking of, I would also tell myself to work harder towards scholarships because it is only now that I realize how hard it is to come across money for my education. Finally, I would make sure to let myself know to not worry as much as I did and understand that college is a good experience that will act as a benefit for my adult life.

Nora

Please meet with advicers and if you have a learning disablity of any kind go to The office of Disablity and accomodations. I was ashamed of my ruling of ADHD and tryed to keep it a secret. They should be ashamed and should get all help the can get. So they can succeed in school. I am very close to finally graduating but now I have no more financial aid from Government. It has taken me a while to graduate with my disablity. Get help. Talk to people and reveal all yourself. If you are struggling go talk to someone until someone listens.

Joseph

Well, I would first tell myself to apply for as many colleges as I could. i recieved many scholarship opportunities, but I was set on going to a particular school and became too narrow minded. As a result, I am going to USM with no scholarships because the college I wanted to go to did not work out. I would also tell myself to take some more classes, such as Physics, Biology II, and Chemistry II. Finally i would tell myself to study. I have never had to study before, so it's been an interesting experience getting used to studying.

Alyssa

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would first tell myself not to worry. College is not as scary as I thought it would be. It is full of very helpful students and professors. The professors have office hours that I can attend, and many on campus recources such as writing and speaking centers that are more than willing to help with assignments. The transition between being a high school senior to a college freshmen is very smooth. Second, I would have told myself to build better study skills, and to be more responsible for keeping up with my own work instead of relying on my teachers. Third, I would tell myself to be better organized with my notes and handouts because they have a tendacy to show up again and again in college. Lastly, I would tell myself to enjoy college, and to thank my parents for forcing me to wake up everyday to go to school because it has built good habbits for attending classes in college.

Arthur

One thing to do is to stay focused on academics and get invovled in organizations. Stay away from people how wantsts to hender you and be a role model for somebody else. Put plenty of time in classroom assignments because in the end it will all pay off.

Simon

The advice that i would give myself is to not take college as a joke. It is easy to not go to class because there was no one making me. By not going to class i was hurting myself in the long run because i fell behind very fast. Be responsible, its fun to go and hang out with friends and party but thats not what college is suppose to be about. Work on not procrastinating so much because I would end up putting to much pressure on myself and not succeeding. Set up a chart or schedule of when you have class, when you have homework/study time and when you can have free time. I know it all sounds lame but believe me it is better to be neat and organized. Dont be afraid to ask your professors for help, even if they cant help you alot. It's a whole new ball game. A big difference from high school. Instead its you yourself that you have to take care of, no ones going to do it for you.

Danielle

I would tell "my high school self" to save my graudation money and not blow it on clothes and food! I would tell myself to save it and use it for my tution. I would also tell myself to not take so many hard classes together and work at the hospital daycare that is close by and save that money for school tution and books! I would give my high school self a serious talk about the finanical situation I am in now and how if I saved my graudation money and worked at that daycare I would probably not have as many loans.

Stormi

I would tell myself to keep my notes from my classes and to challenge myself more. I would explain to myself that when I got up there I didn't feel like I had reached my full potiental in high school. By telling myself to challenge myself more I would feel more comfortable moving into a different atmosphere where others are challenging me and I'm not comfortable with it because I wasn't challenged enough then.

Karly

First of all I would tell myself to do more work than the teachers require me to do. The reason for that is because the more work a students does the better. I have learned in many classes that on the test there are things that we did not review in class, but the materials are in the book. My major is nursing and studying well will get me far. One thing that has followed me from high school are my studying habits. Those habits from high school are not very usefull in college. In high school I did not study the way I should have but my grades were how I wanted them to be. College is very different because I can not study days before the test like high school. The last thing I would tell myself is to apply for many scholarships because college is not cheap. Hopefully I recieve this scholarship, it will help a lot. Thank You

Melissa

I would have to tell myself that I would be able to overcome my negative parents' belief that I wasn't worth going to the college of my choosing, that they would only contribute to the cost of a relatively inexpensive state school instead of the college of my dreams. I'd tell myself that I was worth fighting for- that the college of my dreams is even better than I imagined, and that I fit in and felt like I belonged from the very first visit. Even though it was scary leaving home, it was also the most exciting and exhilirating thing that I have ever done, and I wouldn't change a thing. Maybe I appreciate it more because I had to do it on my own. Maybe I should thank my parents for that.

Crystal

If I were to travel back in time to talk to myself as a high school senior, I would encourage myself to start practicing better study habits. In my senior year of high school a few of the classes I took were U.S. Government, AP Spanish V and AP Literature, and looking back, my achievements in those classes were satisfactory but I could've done a lot better. It probably had to do with the fact that I didn't like my teachers much and I was ready to be done with school and graduate, but those are not responsible reasons for not caring as much about my studying as I could have. In college, mom and dad won't be there to remind you to do homework or study for exams, and it's up to you to make the time to study, go over class lectures and notes, and stay on top of your work. Some teachers don't collect homework or take attendance, so skipping class and fudging homework (or forgetting about it completely) are tempting options, but you have to set a standard for yourself as for how you are going to get work done.

Kathryn

If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would definitely tell myself to study, study, study. When I first got to college it was tough learning how to adjust from high school subjects to college ones. I don't think I was ready for the amount of studying I had to do and also I wasn't sure how to study to absorb the most information as possible. I was really involved in high school but I wasn't in very many leadership positions. If I had a chance to go back and talk to myself, I would tell me to take more leadership positions in organizations in which I was involved. I think that this would have helped me get more leadership scholarships to help pay for school.

PATRICIA

Pat you were crazy to quit school at age fifteen. Now that you have taken the initiative, after forty three years, at age fifty eight to return to school, to earn a college degree you have a second chance. First, you should have not quit school, second you should have fought harder to return to school after you married, even in the face of the Grand Bay, Alabama school board when they said, because you were married, you could not attend their public school. Last but not least, when you got your GED at age twenty one you should have found a way to get into college and attain a degree. This could have made your and your children's lives much easier and better, and definately it would have set a much better example for them. I hope young people who have the great opportunity to attend college take full advantage and don't waste their time or money. Life's opportunities are precious and should be embraced and appreciated.

Robyn

If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school senior I would tell myself to work harder. You need to a good work ethic and not be lazy. School is too expensive to be lazy or missing classes. I would also say that in college not everyone is going to be your friend and not everyone is going to like you. Thats just life. There are so many distractions in college. If you really want to succeed you need to be focused. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Another tip would be work on time management. If you know ahead of time that there is something you want to do make sure all of your work is done. The most important thing I would tell myself is be yourself. In college you really have to love yourself. There are so many people who will try and take advantage of you. Just remember your goals, morals, and values. Don't let anyone stand in the way of your dreams. In college you could have so much free time, make sure you take advantage of it.

Antoinette

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would tell myself to continue to strive hard and keep my mind focused on why I'm attending college in the first place. I would tell my self that communicating with the professors is a good thing and that I should not be afraid to talk to them and if I need help with something a tutor is a great option instead of trying to teach myself the information that I don't understand. I would also tell myself to become more involved as early as possible because the longer you wait the harder it is to become involved. I would tell myself to weigh my options carefully and follow my heart and have fun but learn as much as possible and never give up regardless of what anyone says or does and not to let anything get in the way.

Raeanne

Raeanne, apply to colleges everywhere, this is the beginning of your life, you can do anything. You must understand how much everything changes after you graduate high school and you are out in the working world. None of the petty things like what you wear, or who you hang out with matter anymore. You must always do whatever makes you happy and be true to yourself because you only have one life. Your future is what is important and you need to explore all of your possible options, you really can do anything you want.

ronalda

Dear high school me, Nothing in life comes easy. That especially applies to college life. School work is not to be taken lightly. True it may get hard at times but when you get awesome grades it definately pays off. Also, professors love it when u ask them questions. It makes them feel needed and imprtant. Another thing, making good friends is a process. Not everyone is looking out for your best intrests. I think the most important thing that i can tell you is: think for yourself, be your own person, and never change for anyone. Enjoy!!!!

Domenick

If i could travel back in time and talk to myself about college life and making the transition i would have to talk to myself about not procrastinating on deadlines, slap yourself to stay awake, and always follow directions. The first thing i would say is "Get with the program you slowpoke!", because college is no where near in comparison with high school life. The pace is just about the same as a speeding train. Secondly, i would have to slap my younger self a few times to get him into staying awake during class lectures. One of the most important things in college is to completely pay attention in class. Although you might forget to do your homework, but during testing you will remember an absolutely crucial fact and you will thank the heavens you were awake when the teacher said it. Lastly, ALWAYS follow directions. Knowledge is nothing without knowing what you are supposed to do with it. You could be the smartest person in the world, but look stupid if the directions were not followed. Ultimately, these three topics are what i feel the most important ones to talk to myself about.

Alana

Knowing what I do now about college life and the transition, I would like to be able to tell myself as a high school senior to calm down! Although at this age I was excited, I was very anxious and nervous to start something new. I would share that although it is scary...it is a wonderful experience. I would share that it is a time of growth and change which is exciting! I would also share that although it is a wonderful to have an open heart, that should not mean you completely let your guard down and allow others run over you. I would tell myself that prepare for the responsibilities ahead! I wish I could let myself know as high school senior to not be afraid of being alone! Fear can do nothing for you but stand in your way, especially the fear of loneliness! Having indepence and being on your own teaches you so much about yourself! Last, I would share that college is like a journey, although the ride is a little bumpy and sometimes dark...for the most part, the scenery is beautiful and the destination is certainly well worth it!

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