by: Katherine Snyder
As my freshman year of college comes to an end, I have been re ecting on themany lessons I’ve learned over the past several months. College has truly been a whirlwind experience for me and I’m still getting used to how everything works. Being a college student has slowly converted me from a careless teenager to a more responsible young woman. I thought I’d share some of the valuable life lessons I’ve learned with my fellow freshman.
One of the most important things I learned this year is time management. “Time is money,” as many people say. I came into college thinking that I would be fine and wouldn’t have to strictly plan out my time. I thought it would belike high school where I would do my homework after my classes and be done for the day. Well, the reality sank in very quickly as I realized I need to plan ahead for things. After being extremely unorganized my fall semester, I came back in the spring with a planner and it has served me well. Using a planner is useful to know when your assignments are due, when you have club meetings or important events to attend. Take half an hour out of your weekend to make your schedule or you can even plan weeks ahead. You’ll become much more organized and less stressed.
Another very valuable lesson I learned personality-wise is that you don’t have to follow the crowd or the stigmas. College is a time to pave and follow your own path, to discover who you truly are, what you like and dislike and how you want to spend your time. I got caught up with following what other people weredoing my rst semester and after awhile it hit me that I just wasn’t happy withwhat I was doing. I quickly re-evaluated my actions after seeing that everyone isin their own boat and sailed o into mine. I have become a much happier person overall by discovering what I love to do and being around supportive people.
Learning not to wait until the last minute to do assignments or projects in college has been one of my biggest lessons and realizations. I did this a plethora of times over the course of the year and I was so stressed out to the point where it wasn’t even worth procrastinating. This really ties in with time management, you shouldn’t wait to do projects or assignments until the night before they are due. Always plan out assignments and projects according to the rest ofyour schedule. Your grades rely on your effort and quality of those things, so do yourself a favor and do some time managing. If you have a big project or assignment, break it into separate parts instead of doing it all at once, stressing yourself out and wasting time. Rather than doing a poor job after pulling an unnecessary all-nighter in the library, which is very mentally and physically draining, you’re better o completing it early or in a reasonable amount of time with good effort and quality work.
Making friends in college is a hard task no matter what approach you take. Freshman year was like speed dating for me, except with making friends. College is about making life long friendships, so choose wisely. After awhile, I realized I needed to be around people who made me happy and supported me. I learned that the people you surround yourself with is key to how you’re going to grow as a person. I put myself around those who always support me no matter the situation, who are always there for me and of course, make me laugh on my darkest days. Remember, the people you surround yourself with will be the influence on how you act as a person.
Overall I am very thankful for everything I have been taught in this first yearof college and I will be carrying what I’ve learned, including many lessons I did not list, with me into my future endeavors. I am looking forward to learning even more lessons based on finding myself so I can do better in school and my personal life.