West Chester University of Pennsylvania Top Questions

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


If I could go back to my high school senior self I would first slap my self. I would do this becuase one to get my attention and two I think it would be really funny. After I slap my self I would then say wake up, and listen. "Everything you have been told about college is false. Everything that you want from college will not happen, so listen up! College is not a joke, when you hear it to be the best years of your life, this is not true. This is the time where you must focus and work hard to keep up your grades. You cannot go out and have fun when you want and blow off your work till later. Start now organizing, prioritizing, and stay ahead of your work. You never know what could happen. Proffesors don't care if you missed there class you have to find a way to learn what you missed. Start now, prepare, learn as much as you can and be serious. Do not slack off, and don't eat that Dorito... You will know when the time comes."


I think when you are thinking about coming to college it is best to know what you want to do with your life. I say this because as I came into college I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with my future and that honestly can put you behind as far as when you graduate. I also think it is important to go to a summer program if the institute you are going to offers it,. this allows you to get a head start with grades and just the filling of college. I also recommend that you visit the college because looking at the college website is not always how the college may really be and if you decide to go there it may not be what you thought. I say take your chances also if you really want to go to a college that is far out but the money is our of your reach, look for ways to pay for it. I never noticed how many scholarships there are out until i started to reasearch. As a senior you have to think about your next four years of your life as your own.


If I could go back and give myself advice, I would give myself a few very simple pointers: *Be sure to go to class...every class. Do not skip classes. Classes are important. Treat your classes as if it were your job....Show up on time and get your work done. *Do the work. All of the work. And, do it on time. If the work is challenging, get help! *Help others be successful. The best way to learn information is to teach others. By serving others, you can better yourself.


I would try to convey to my high school self how important higher education is. I would tell him that it is so important to choose a school that will provide opporitunities to network with professionals within your desired field. I would tell him to choose a school that will allow yourself to be the best you can possibly be. I would tell him to choose a school that is competitive and encourages student participation on and off-campus. I would tell him what is going to expected of him in the "real world" and that he should pick a school that would help him develop a skill set that will allow him to become a successful leader within his desired field. Lastly, I would tell him disregard the prices of the school. I would tell him to be more concerned with the value of the education via expierences rather than the value of a particular school finacially.


I would go back and tell myself this: " This is going to be hard, but don't lose focus on why you are here. You are here to better yourself and learn from each mistake you make while EARNING your degree. This isn't high school, this is college, the stepping stone to the real world. Work for what you want. Prepare yourself for this rollercoaster ride, and all the twists and turns that comes along with it. And, always remember, Mom is just a call a way for when things get tough."


Instead of finishing my senior year at my high school, I decided to go to Bucks County Community College as a full-time college student. This past May of 2014 I graduated with an Associated Degree in Mathematics with a 3.8 GPA. This made my senior year different than others because I was a full-time college student. I chose to do this because of the SATs. I have not been successful at standardized tests and was concered that colleges would not recognize my dedication to attaining a college degree. The SATs are not an indicator of what type of student I am. I knew that colleges would look at me and see a weak student with just my SAT scores, but when they looked at me as a hard dedicated student in college a year ahead, then they would really see what kind of student I was. I was able to show universities that I could attain a high GPA, but I was also able to graduate with-in 2 years with my AS in Mathematics. I do not feel I would have any advice for myself going back in time. I am happy where I am now.


If i could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior knowing what i know about college life and making the transition would be to have an open mind. As a high school senior I was very attached to my high school and my town and it was hard for me to let go and make the transition. I was very nervous and did not know what to expect but now I am having the time of my life. I would also like to tell myself to adjust my study habits a little bit because college studying is different from high school. Professors are not going to baby you through the work so you must be prepared to do it. Out of al of this the must important thing for me would be to have fun but also stay focused on the task at hand.


If I had the oppurtunity to go back and talk to my highschool self the only thing I would tell myself is to apply for more scholarships. Now realizing how expensive college is, and the amount of scholarships that are available, specifically for highschool seniors, I wish that I would have taken more time to apply and take advantage of the oppurtunities that were available to me. Had I taken advantage of these oppurtunities, college would be less of a burden on both my parents and I.


If I could go back in time and talk to the high school senior version of myself I would've encouraged myself to research every possible loan and scholarship out there. After being accepted to Penn State I was convinced that we would be able to make it work financially only to find out that realistically it wasn't possible. Knowing what I know now I would've done everything in my power to finance myself to get to my dream school. If that hadn't worked again I would have encouraged myself to stay optimistic about my time at West Chester and make the most of my experience here. I would have encouraged myself to continue working out at the gym and to stay upbeat rather than allowing myself to sink into the dark place I was in for most of first semester. I would've encouraged myself to work harder first semester rather than letting the situation get the best of me.


i would say time management and always make time to improve yourself. What i mean by making time to improve yourself is never letting others hold you back whether its being held back by their emotions or mentallly in the way of feeling discouraged or belittled by the ones that surround you. Always assume you will prosper in any situation or enviroment your faced with. In shport words to sum it all up just have courage to always believe that you will do nothing but succeed in life.


Always have your main plan and a backup. College is not just about getting an education...it is about learning about yourself. You're making an investment, therefore; make your decision and look at multiple majors you may be interested in (just in case you would like to change majors). Also, NEVER SETTLE! Once again...You are making an investment into your future. You want to be happy with your decision in the near future, and you want to be greatful of the decision when you receive a "return" on your investment in the distant future. If your heart leaps at the idea of attending a university that you've researched deeply and contemplated on the idea logically, chances are...that is the choice you should make.


I would advise myself to go away to a four year school immediately. These past two years that I spent at Montgomery County Community College were not what I expected. While I saved a decent amount of money going to a local community College, I did not feel like I was at college. At WCU I will be taking advantage of every opportunity I can to advance myself. I want to connect with the Sports Department and start helping them out, as I aspire to work in the sports industry as a Public Relations professional.


Perhaps the greatest piece of advice I would give to my younger, more naïve high school self is to stop living up to the expectations of others. Despite what they claim, no one knows the hopes and desires you keep close to yourself. Happiness is subjective, and the road to it is as varied and unique as every individual. Attempting to please everyone is an exercise in futility, for everyone demands different things from you, and it is impossible to please them all. Instead, focus on the things that interest you as an individual. Sign up for fencing, contribute to the campus newspaper, or focus on training your body to become a stronger, healthier version of itself. Volunteer at the local soup kitchen, and marvel at the difference you make in a person’s life. Participate in the activities that fascinate you, despite the unreasonable condemnation of your peers. The only expectations that you must accommodate to are your own. Life is short, fleeting, and to not live on it on your own terms is a disservice to both your talents and intellect.


College is just that final step needed to make life easier and can help other build their path towards their career and the work force. Once people who decide to go to college, will have the best four years of their life where people wish they could go to college all over again after graduation. Also going to college can help people achieve excellent jobs for their careers. Also it is best to have perserverance and never give up on the goals that one sets for themselves to accomplish and it is best to see it through to the very end.


If I were to go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would give myself the advice to save my money to pay for college instead of spending it on unnecessary items. I wold also advise myself to not sweat the small stuff. I would get myself so worked up before a test and if I did not get a good grade I would beat myself up after I got my grade back. I stressed so much that I did worse on the test. The one test grade would not have hurt me enought to worry about it to the degree I was. Another piece of advice I would give myself is to get involved in my community more. I believe volunteering helps an individual realize there is more to life then just themselves. I feel I have skills that I could have used to better my community but I did not share my abilities enough. The one thing that stood out to me as soon as I read this question was; I wish I spent more time with my family when I was home.


I remember being a high school senior like it was yesterday. I was so nervous and excited all at the same time it felt like I could explode at any moment. I remember thinking all sorts of wild thoughts about what college would be like. Things like will my roommate like me? Are my professor like my high school teachers? Am I really going ot have to right a 20 page paper every semester?! Just millions of thoughts rushing through my mind 24/7. The most important advice I would give myself is to simply calm down and breathe. As simple as that sounds surprisingly I couldn't do that at all when I was a senior at high school. College has been an amazing experience exceeding all my expectations, I had nothing to be nervous about at all. People were right when they said college would be the best four years of your life. I honestly never want it to end.


Hey kid, I am you from the future. I am here to give you a bit of what the real world is like. You have to do things on your own, you make your own destiny, and you cannot doubt yourself for one second. You will have the opportunity to make a difference in the world, and also meet a lot of great people who understand you. It will be scary at first, but I know, from experience, that you have what it takes. Remember to plan out your days and leave time for work and for fun. And start flossing, its good for your health!


High school was very easy for me and for the most part was not taken seriously, I thought I was a genius! If I could give advise to myself it would be to prepare for the unexpected not only intelligently but finanically. College is challenging and if I realized that ahead of time I would have worked harder my first semester rather than slack off thinking I was going to pass anyway. Even a C your first semester can risk your GPA for the future, DON'T STRESS OUT TOO MUCH but at the same time just be aware and work on time management. High school and college life are very different and if I advised myself to not go into it head strong I would have ended up less stressed.


It seems like yesterday that I was taking a campus tour of West Chester University as a high school senior, an outsider, looking in on the college life, the different majors, and numerous opportunities. If I were to travel back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would advise not to be scared of change, but embrace and adapt to it. As we open unfamiliar doors in life, we deal with fear and uncertainty of what new territory lies ahead. I had trepidation about leaving behind family and friends, and transitioning from “home” life to a completely new college life filled with freedom and independence. After two semesters, I learned that change is beneficial and that I was fully prepared to face the tasks and responsibilities myself. To add, balance and moderation is the key to success. It was a major transition going from four classes in high school to six college classes. Although I had a heavy workload, I found that with great time management, hard work, and organization, it is possible to succeed academically and allocate time for community service and social outings with friends. College has helped me grow as an individual.


I’m standing in the small corner bedroom of my parents’ house, complete with decades old blue carpet and whirring ceiling fan. A young quirky haired high school boy sits at his desk, smirking a little under his pointy nose. The calendar behind him says 2006. Then, beyond my wildest dream, I realize that boy is me… only a much younger and greasier version of me. And that phone, oh no, it can’t be. “Dan, I scream, put down that phone; you don’t want to accept that job! Sure, it looks like great now… but think how you’ll feel working alone, baking bread, in the middle of the night. You’ll spend two years trying to make yourself something you’re not. Don’t do it, please. You have that brain, character, and you're warm and approachable! Why would you want to waste those strengths hidden like a worker elf in the back room? You can teach! Go to college and make the world better by your talents.” That is exactly what I told myself 7 years ago, but now I am sitting in front of a blinking computer screen writing it.


The best advice I could give to high school Olivia would be to learn for myself rather than the grade. I am an "eager to learn" individual but I also know what I need to do and the amount of time necessary to get a good grade. The past 4 years, before I had a passion for Chemistry, I studied the material I knew would land me a solid grade in the least amount of time. I regret nothing more than working for a grade rather than the knowledge itself. I would advise high school Olivia to teach and preach the new material she would come across in order to process it in a resourceful way. Do not completely procrastinate to the point where the knowledge flows through your working memory and evades you immediately after its needed. I would encourage my high school self to make friends in my area of study. None of my friends in college had a science background so all of my discussions regarding science were with me, myself, and I. I realized how important discussing new material is in comprehension and application of new information. I can, however, and will still take my advice.


If I could go back and speak with my high school senior self I would tell myself to never loose sight of my dreams. College is the period for learning, growing, maturing, and finding oneself. It is easy to slip away into the social scene and forget about the most important thing that college is for – fulfilling a lifelong dream, the dream of a career that you will love forever. I understand as a senior in college how easy it is to loose sight of the most important things in life even for a moment. The smallest mistakes, even accidents, can tarnish your reputation and make that dream harder, even impossible to obtain. College can be so much fun, and a great experience as an independent person finding their way into the real world. It is always necessary though to remember in every situation what your true goal in college is, and to never loose sight of that dream. I think these are wise words to tell any high school senior.


If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself that college is much different than high school. In high school, teachers are required to make sure that you do your homework and that you stay on top of you school work. In college, it is up to you to make sure that you take care of your responsibilites. In college, the professors do not call your parents when you do not do your assignments or you misbehave in class, instead they tell you to leave, and never return. Also, I would tell myself to save money and to make sure that I am aware of my spending. College is very expensive, so it is important to save money and not waiste it. So, the advice that I would go back and give myself would be to stay on top of my school work, to take responsibility for my own actions, stay focused, eliminate all distractions, and save money.


I would tell myself not to worry. I entered college filled with fears of the changes that might come. My first semester was spent alone in my dorm room afraid to submerge myself in the West Chester community. I would tell myself to break out of my shell more and to not be afraid to meet all kinds of people and develop meaningful relationships. I would also encourage myself to work harder the first two years and take my studies seriosuly. So many students party too much and drop the ball the first two years and lower their GPA. I was fortunate enough to work hard the last two and raise my GPA to an acceptable level. I would tell myself to get involved with more clubs and to not judge a book by its cover. West Chester provided many opportunities to join many kinds of clubs and get involved. I would tell myself not to worry so much and enjoy the next four years to the best of your ability because they fly by in the blink of an eye.


Relax. College is a whole new and amazing experience that will open your eyes to so many different opportunities and experiences. It's going to be tough, as it should be, but it is nothing that you can't handle. You will find an amazing group of friends that will support you through the transition, as they are going through the same struggles. It will be frightening at first, but be patient because you will quickly find that this is a place you can call home and you will actually start to miss it when you are not there. It may be scary to think about the fact that you are starting a whole new chapter in your life, but it will be one of your best, so do not waste your time worrying. Make the best of every second and do not wish the time away. Give your best in everything you do and never be afraid to try new things. You never know where things will end up taking you.


I would tell myself to just be confident. Confidence is very important in college as the classes and trying to meet new people can be intimidating at first. Also I would tell myself to just enjoy the experience and learn as much as you can. And the cool thing is you aren't just learning from your classes, I mean obviously I've learned a lot from them. But in college you can learn so much about how important time management is and planning for yourself. No one is there to hold your hand in college so it's good and important to learn the skill of scheduling out your day and how you can be most productive. Like I said before about confidence, I would tell myself to just meet as many new people as I can. You never know who may end up becoming one of your best friends. College is a once in a lifetime thing that you need to take full advantage of, you will never get this time back.


You are so much more capable than you lead yourself to think. I would give this advice to not only my younger self, but anyone facing the upcoming challenges of high school and college. We are a generation that has been plagued by aid, handouts, and the assumption that we cannot work for anything. While I may not be able to speak for everyone in my age group, it is fair to say we are easily discouraged. If given the opportunity, I would heavily stress that to myself that the next 4-8 years will most likely be the most difficult faced so far, but they can be conquered. Stress and doubt are natural, but if other people can surmount these tasks than so can I (you). Investing in yourself always pays off ten-fold, and frankly it is the best thing you can do with your time. In closing, I would reiterate, “take your time, do things right the first time. Step back so you can put things in perspective, and set goals.”


I would tell myself to save and no be so irresponsible with money. Also I would tell myself everything is going to be ok and everything will work out if I just don't give up. I need to go for what I want with more confidence.


I would advise myself to save more money intead of buying things I didn't need. I'll be paying huge amounts of student loans and the financial burden is one that I couldn't have even imagined before actually dealing with it. I would also advise myself to apply for as many scholarships as I could because any amount would help. I was stressed in high school, but taking the time to at least try to get something would be better than not trying at all. I would also advise myself to pack earlier, as funny as that seems, and I would advise myself to take time to breathe, make a priority list, and get everything I had to get done, completed so I wouldn't be so stressed.


Well Julie, your almost finished high school! This is an exciting time in your life but there are a few things I want you to remember as you go to college. Any action you make in life has a reaction. Now that reaction can be positive or negative but that’s for you to decide. Go out and be active on campus. Do something meaningful, impactful, something that leaves a legacy in the community of people you’re surrounded with. Be positive and uplifting in the words that come out of your mouth and the words that you think to yourself . Also, surround yourself with people who do the same. Always be honest, even if honesty might be hard. Remember that if your living environment is thriving your academics will as well. Know that college is not what it seems like in the movies. You do not have to be best friends with your roommate but as long as you live respectfully you will succeed. Lastly, remember that you are at college for your academics, focus on what is truly important. Most of all, know that your family will always be there to support and love you no matter what.


Convincing myself of anything is hard, and taking my own advice has never been my forte. However if I could tell myself anything as a high school senior it would include enjoying the moment, organizing myself, and focusing on what matters. I am the biggest worrier in the world, and too often in high school and in the beginning of my freshman year of college I would let that stress take over and panic and it truly never helped the situation. Now I'm better at staying positive, doing everything I can in the present, and not worrying about the little things tomorrow may bring. That being said, I'd definitely tell myself to hone those organizational skills - no procrastinating or random slip ups. Use the time you have to get it together sister! It makes life so so much easier. Instead of focusing on the negatives, I know now that learning about other people, myself, and what I want is this huge process that is crazy, chaotic, messy, scary, and when you take a step back, it's what life is all about. It's beautiful. College has taught me tons I would love to assure senior Emily of.


If I could go back and address my high school self before making the transition to college I would tell myself to simply to make the most of the experience to come. I feel as though college, my freshmen year especially, has allowed me to grow tremendously as a person in ways I never thought possible. I've broken out of my once suffocating shell of hinderance and anxiety and become so involved with campus life I'm dreading the day I have to say goodbye. I would keep my advice to my high school senior self simple because I now know just how much college has transformed and strengthened me as an individual and I would never want to change a thing.


Stay in school and go to all your classes, study hard, do not party with the bad crowd, do not hang with these people they will only get you in trouble. If you stay in school and do well you will get very far and have a really great job that you enjoy along with the right crowd of friends who love and care about your well being and who will be there for you when nobody else is. Once you are done with high school you will go to college so you can get your degree and get a very good education and you can get a greatly rewarding job that not only pays well but promotes you for your accomplishments. You will be able to start your won business and succeed and all your dreams will come true but only if you stay in school and workreally hard and earn all you have. Sure there will be sacrifices that you will have to make but look at the big picture.....you will have all the rewards you earned and deserved and it's all because you kept your nose clean, worked very hard, and did not give up.


If I could go back in time to talk to myself as a high school senior I would first tell myself to not be so afraid in the beginning. I was so nervous to start college and I didn't need to be. I made os many new friends and I loved experiencing my college classes. Next I would tell myself that its okay to put yourself out there. To Get out of my comfort zone alittle and experince college. My first semester went super well and I can't wait for my second semester to start. I would definatly tell myself that college is amazing and to get excited!


Transitioning from high school senior to college freshmen was not as difficult as I had expected. In my high school, there were only 125 people in my graduating class. There was not one person I did not know in my class; and, I had a group of friends that I had known since elementary school. My biggest fear was losing my friends, and not being able to gain new ones at college. However, after the first couple weeks I quickly found a group. I played tennis so my team became a second family to me. Furthermore, I met people through housing and clubs. I think the reason I did not find the transition difficult was because I kept myself active in the university and surrounded by amazing friends. If I could go back and give myself advice, I would tell myself not to be a nervous wreck. I would tell myself to enjoy the ride and that you will make friends. While college is very different from high school, it is important to not lose sight of who you are as a person. Change is an important part of life; however, accepting and embracing who you are is more important.


In highschool, I was very shy and unsure of myself. I was completely obsessed with trying to be perfect, and I worried so much about what everyone thought of me. College has completely flipped my perspective around. Through my first two years I have shed my self concious shell, and emerged a confident woman. If I were to travel back to high school and give myself some advice, I would say "Allie, there is no reason to be so concerned about what everyone else thinks. All that matters is what you feel and what you want. You can not let other's judgements hold you back from reaching your true potential." I am so happy with how much I have changed in the past two years, and if I could have made that transition earlier, I would have been able to enjoy my first semester at college more.


If I were to go back and talk to my high school self, I would say that college is a whole new, exciting, and petrifying experience. I would also advise that I choose very wisely where I want to spend the next four years of my life. Although, I love the school that I attend, I wish that I took more time looking into what University best matched the person I am. I come from a very diverse background and because of this, I live my life in a very different way compared to my peers. I am very accepting of difference and I would really love if the University I attended was similar to that. I believe if this world was a little more accepting of people's differences, we'd cut down on all the issues we face with eachother. The last thing I would go back and tell my high school self is that unlike high school, in college, the whole world is in my hands. The opportunities are endless and it's time to take advantage of every bit of it that you have.


If I had the chance to go back and tell myself college life, I would tell myself to get more involved. Building a resume is very important for future jobs. I would tell myself to join more clubs and to put myself out there. Focusing on school is important, but also making friends is something that is important as well. I would tell myself to make friends and to not be afraid of what other people think of me. Study a lot, and have a lot of fun. Get involved and make the best out of the 4 years in undergraduate. I would also tell myself to have a better idea with what I want to do when applying to college because changing majors is a set back sometimes. Overall, I would just let myself know to have fun and open up and let people know me instead of being shy and to myself. Involvment in campus affairs should be one of my priorities to help me build a resume.


I would tell myself to apply to as many scholarships while a senior in highschool. I would tell myself that college is a huge expense and now that at the age of 23; the loans keep piling up and the future is looking a bit grim. I feel that the path of going to my local community college was a great choice but there are cons to this decision. I would tell myself to prepare to be completely out of the loop when transitioning to a new school and not being a freshman. I would consider attending a college in-state regardless of the curriculum that they might have at that institution because going to a colleg in-state and having a support group close by is better than being thrown to the wolves. I'd also tell myself though that going to a school out-of-state with no one that you know helps build responsibility and independence throughout the whole college experience.


The number one goal is to obtain a degree. Do not worry too much on socializing because focusing on other people instead of your schoolwork is a bad thing to do. Know how to say no, if you are invited out but have a paper to do, make sure that paper gets done. If a crowd of your friend are doing activities that you are not into or that is illegal it is ok to say no. Do not try to fit in with everybody because you were born to stand out. Establish a solid foundation when it comes to deciding which degree you want to acquire. Look into the available resources on campus as well as talking with upper classmen. Be open-minded and try different course to help narrow down your focus. Channel all of your stress & frustration into something that is fun and will help give back to the community. Being around people while doing something positive tend to make what you are going through not as bad as you might think easier to cope with. That project can turn into something that will make you proud of & a bond with people that contributed to it.


Natalie: I know you're terrified to go off to school and leave the comfort of what you know and love in high school, but be excited! You will grow and learn so much here. You will make great lifelong friends, and you will keep the old few who stuck around through it all! Now, with all the music opportunities there are here, remember that you can't say yes to all of them (even though you will - you'll learn the hard way). Try to relax a little bit more than you think you need to - it's important. Natalie, you're going to work very hard and accomplish a lot, so don't worry about that. Just remember to breathe and have a social life along the way.


Life is an interesting journey with its ups ,downs, left and right turns, but all these obstacles are to help mold you into a knowledgable person. As a 26 year old non-traditional college student, if I was able to go back into time I would definitely give myself one advice. Advice that not only to stop me from making certain mistakes but to continue on certain paths and change the mindset I had in the past. As I graduate High school, I would tell myself to not take a year off of college just because I decided to go to a junior college. Yes, my first year I landed on the Dean's list but not using my time correctly that year off will change everything in my future since I'm still making up for that year now. Telling myself that my immediate family would become homeless for the year just when you decided to finish up your A.A. degree, I'll meet and marry the man of dreams and become a mom at 23 would motivate me to remain and complete my elementary education degree by the time I was 22. Which was my American Dream.


In my junior year of college, my public speaking Professor shared some of his general advice for life upon course completion. One thing in particular stood out to me when he said: "question everything". In high school, it's easy to stay within the walls of the comfort zone you create, but as you transition to furthering your professional and intellectual career, I would advise my high school senior self to heed this advice from the get-go. We think we know our likes and our dislikes to their full extent, but this isn't always the case. Having transferred schools and switched majors later in the school year, my professors advice holds true. As I began to explore other interests and deepen my understanding of areas I was already passionate about, I was beginning to develop my ethics, my values, and my future goals. In the next few years and thereafter, utilize your voice to strengthen it. And as you develop your course load, let your curiousities and wonders direct you at times. I found myself growing as a young professional when my cursiousity provoked my voice and I was able to develop greater understandings.


If I were to go back in time and talk to my highschool self again about college, I would tell myself not to give up on school and take it seriously. There were times that school became tough and I chose to give up by taking a break for a semester or go out with friends not realizing that school was a roadmap for my career path. I'd explain that although school seemed tough at certain times it would all be worth it in the end. I'm pretty sure that if I gave myself a little glimpse of my future then my highschool self wouldn't think twice about staying in school and never taking a break from it. I would also stress the fact that I would need to participate in college life such as events or programs the school has to help me find a job once I graduate. One of the most important things I would tell myself would be that my family and close friends will still be there waiting for me to graduate and get my Bachelor's degree.


Understand that you can make as many plans as your heart desires and as your personality would dictate, but be flexible to the opportunities that you didn't plan on. These opportunities are multitudenous in college and they are the ones that will mean the most to you in the future. Don't allow yourself to become so caught up in planning that you develop tunnel vision. No matter how many times you've heard this, and how little you believe it, college really is a time in your life that you'll never experience again. It is designed for you to develop a sense of identity and this includes learning your hobbies, choosing your friends, and developing your talents. You are an extrememly capable and smart student. Don't get so consumed in your studies that you ignore the joy of the life happening around you. Allow yourself to take risks and have fun. And don't be distracted by the disappointments that will try to prevent you from succeeding. You are a unique individual with a unique talant, who is capable of love and respect; these are the things that will endure in life.


This may come as a surprise to you, but chica… you are naïve. You are exuberant and boisterous and run so fast into the light you sometimes forget to put on your sunblock, and believe me, when you forget your SPF you are likely to get burnt. Unfortunately for us, the burns of life are deep. They kind of creep up on you and tend to catch you off guard. One minute you’re lying in the sun soaking up some vitamin D and next your as red as a lobster and heeled over in pain. But these burns you suffer are also temporary, and I am here to tell you that no matter how deep they are and no matter how much it hurts, the pain is not everlasting. So go out into the world, break free from the boundaries of your small town and never look back. Forget about the boyfriend you think you love, hold on to the few who are true, and set big goals, because at the end of the day even if you end up sunburnt and broken, at least you took a minute to sit back and enjoy the sun.


The most important advice that I could possibly give myself would be to seek medical help for my depression. I would tell my younger self that no matter how hard I tried and no matter how much I studied, it would be all for naught if I was too depressed to get out of bed for days and weeks at a time. There is so much help available for people suffering from depression. I would tell myself that my insurance benefits, which I get via my parents, would run out one day. I would tell myself that once your insurance is gone that receiving help is much harder and takes much more time since free programs are usually extremely crowded and follow up appointments can be months in the future. I have been told by many people that I am the smartest person that they know, but that matters nothing when you can't even hold down a part time job without getting fired because you miss too much work. I would also tell myself to tell my family about my problems many years before I did. They have helped so much since they've been aware of them.


I graduated high school in 2000, and went immediately into college. After a bit more than a year, I dropped out, and didn't return to finish for another 8 years. I would tell myself that college will be different than high school, in that I wouldn't be able to coast through like I was used to. I would advise myself to either approach college work completely differently, or to take a year or two off to allow myself more time to mature. I would tell myself to reevaluate what it is that I want out of life, and to adjust my intended major accordingly (my career goals have changed quite a bit since then). And in the interest of world peace, and with no regard for the timeline I have experienced, I would warn myself about 9/11 and my father's death (unrelated to 9/11). Spending more time with him would make me a happier person, even if it set my education timetable back a few years. I would also make sure to invest in Green Mountain Coffee and Medifast, Inc. (9,200% and 16,000% incease since 2000, respectively). Can't blame me for trying.


In highschool I did fairly well but I feel like I could have done even better. If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a highschool senior I would address a few different situations. During my senior year I got all A's in every class except physics. In physics I obtained a B. If i were talking to myself in that class I would have told my self to ask the teacher more questions on things that I didn't fully understand. That would have helped me obtain a better grade. Also I would have told myself to go to after school sessions for even more help. If I would have done those things I believe that I could have gotten an A in physics. During my senior year I was probably more focused in school than in any other year of highschool. There are not many things I would have changed during that year but making more of an effort to get a better grade in physics would have been one of them.


I would tell myself to never take the opportunity to go to school for granted. Even during the hard times, the boring times, or the not so fun times, embrace the opportunity and be thankful you are there. I would also tell myself to sign up for ROTC before you realize when you want to join its too late.