College: a love-hate relationship

Since it’s the most “love filled” day of the year let’s talk about love, specifically your love for college. Or maybe your hatred towards it. After three semesters of doing this college thing I feel as though I have enough experience to voice my opinions about the complex lifestyle that we live for four short years. It’s really not as simple as dorm life, education, and making friends. It’s about juggling the hundreds of tasks that you need to complete in order to have a good time, education, and plan for the future. These seem like everyday tasks of life, but when they’re being demanded of you every single day of your college career, it starts to get a little overwhelming. I’m sure you’ve heard horror stories of freshman who had to transfer because of their horrific roommate, or maybe because they were bullied by a certain club they joined. These are simply the factors that come with a bunch of 18-year-old high school grads that are pushed into a single environment. Bad things are bound to happen. To handle this love-hate relationship, I’ve come to realize that finding your balance is key to having a great college experience. 

After being at high school with kids that you’ve known for possibility over a decade, it’s time to move into your cubical sized room with two twin beds. It’s obviously not an ideal living situation but it will do for two semesters. The hate relationship with dorm life is centered around your living situation that leaves you no privacy or alone time. It’s not easy to adjust from the comfort of your room back home to a shared space with (at first) a stranger. The love relationship with this though is meeting new people on your floor or your suite. It’s fun making new friends but sometimes its stressful. Personally, trying to be myself around new people isn’t the easiest because I always worry… will they understand my sense of humor? Can they relate to the same things that I do? On top of all of this you’re given the freshman stigma, the idea that “you don’t know the ropes yet” which honestly there’s some truth to that, just the idea that you’re treated like the babies by others gets annoying. Freshman year is something you can’t really relive, so there’s this pressure to do it perfectly which is almost impossible. Make the best friends, establish a good GPA, join the best clubs, and overall have a good time. Something that people don’t realize is that these aspects of college don’t come with a snap of a finger. It takes time to form these friendships and adjust to the intense workload. 

When my mom and dad told me that college was going to be hard, I didn’t think they meant hard like this

I was expecting the schoolwork to be hard but not the lifestyle itself. Simply balancing studying and social life is where I had the most difficulty. If your gonna stay up till 2am on a Tuesday night hanging out with your hall mates fooling around, you’re not going to do well on that test Wednesday at 9am. It’s not a hard thing to understand, it’s a hard thing to avoid when you want to hang out with the new friends you’ve made to form a stronger relationship with them. As a freshman, it wasn’t easy for me to say no to that party on Friday instead of staying in and finishing my assignment. In fact it took me a whole semester to realize that if I wanted to hang out with my friends I needed to get all of my work done before Friday night. That sounds dumb of me while I type this, that it was that hard for me to put school first, but it’s something I’ve observed in not only freshman but many college students. Im sure you’ve heard the words… “college will be the best four years of your life.

And just that saying itself proves the expectation that us students need to live up to, to have a good time here. The pressure for “the best four years” is what pushes students to end up having the worst four years. 

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