As I write this I am 4 short days away from my last semester as a college student. 4 days away from my last 7 weeks on my college campus. 4 days away from starting my last but many memories of a community that has fed me, grown me, and encouraged me through my last 3 and a half years of my life.
4 days is a short time, but hey, I thought since maybe I have a few years of college under my belt, I could give some advice to those up and coming freshman who are going to start this so called “wonderful adventure that you can’t get anywhere else”.
So I figured since I’ve got some experience, I could tell you the truth of what college will hold:
Um let me tell ya: I seriously feel like I just walked into my first dorm room, shaking the hand of my bright redheaded roommate (<3). When parents, loved ones, college grads, whoever, tell you that college will fly by, they are not lying. You may think you’ll be in the great world of college for 4 long years, but come to find out it will be feel more like a short 4 and a half weeks of pure freedom and then adult life and decisions happen and you freak. So will time fly when you’re having the time of your life? Heck yes it will, so soak it up when you can.
I have yet to experience my college friendships “lasting” but let me tell you one thing: the people you meet in college will break you, mold you, and shape you into a better person. These friendships won’t be surface level, but deeper than anything you have ever known because those friends have been through thick and thin with you. So make lasting friendships, and make them with the people you want to become- the people that encourage you and love you for who you are- because that is what lasts.
3. Freshman Fifteen Aint a Lie
Okay so I didn’t gain 15 pounds right off the bat, but crazy enough, as you are growing in knowledge and wisdom in your college years, your body is growing a little bit too. So don’t let the all-you-can-eat buffet pull ya down. College will have lots of food and you will want to eat lots of it, so beware: the fifteen may be coming your way.
MAN did I learn about myself over the last few years. My college years grew me more than I could ever imagine, not only mentally (school work, duh) but emotionally and spiritually. College is a time that you learn about who you are- your desires and your dreams, your goods and your uglys- it is a time where you figure out who you are, not what the world wants you to be, and what’s so cool is that you are surrounded by people who are figuring out who they are too.
So college is awesome, right? Well, I feel like there are a few things they didn’t tell you:
5. College Isn’t Perfect
I am sorry, but whoever makes movies about college students and what college life is like is a bold face liar. Yes, every school will have groups of people who always hangout together or groups who can be labeled as the “cool people” or the soccer team, but we don’t all just sit in the quad and drink juice boxes all day. We actually go to class, we actually have to study, and sometimes being social is hard. College is awesome but man is it no where near perfect. Friendships are hard, growing up is even harder, and homework is something that actually needs to get done. You will miss home, you will cry a few times, and you may lose a few friends a long the way. And most the time, you won’t find your “group” in your first semester. Stuff happens, life happens, but let me tell you one thing: that is all okay.
The reality of how wonderful my last 3 years have been came crashing down on me as I sat across from my parents at the kitchen table, crying like a baby, as I told them that I didn’t think I would be living with them after I graduated. I cried because they told me it was okay, and I cried because I realized, I didn’t really want to grow up.
So as you enter college, soak it all in. Soak in the memory of tripping on the Commons stairs on your first day of orientation. Soak in the Finals Scream and the late night donut runs. And soak in those 8 a.m. classes, because one day, you will miss it.
And one day, you will have to grow up