First year of college has been full of ups and downs

By Samantha Ickes on March 04, 2014
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I won’t lie to you and sugarcoat college. It’s not like the movies. It isn’t all fun and games, that’s for sure. My first two weeks were absolute chaos, with homework, studying, and working.

If you haven’t questioned what you’re doing with your life, consider yourself lucky. You will learn a lot about yourself and the world around you during your college experience, which is to be expected. After all, we are growing up, and a lot of changes and responsibility come with that.

It’s completely worth it

I don’t want to shed a negative light on college, though. I’m happy with my life right now. I have a position on a magazine known as The Burr that has won multiple awards.  I maintained a 3.8 GPA while taking 17 credit hours and balancing 20 hours a week for my part-time job my first semester. I have a loving and supportive family, and I’ve met so many amazing people. I wouldn’t change anything about my life right now.

One thing this school year has taught me is to keep an open mind and push through the bad because it will get better. There may be days where everything goes wrong. You might lock yourself out of your room or get kicked off the Wi-Fi. You might have a bad day at work or have to walk to class in the rain. But it will all be worth it to have the career you dream of. As a little blue fish named Dory said, “Just keep swimming.”

Get the right people around you

Another thing I’ve learned is that in order to be successful in your college career, you just have to surround yourself with supportive, positive people -- people who will encourage you.

Personally, my boyfriend, Matthew, who lives in my hometown, has helped me the most (other than my mom and dad, of course). He has always been there for me to talk to, and he believes in me even when I want to give up and cry. I don’t know what I would have done without him telling me that I can do it -- that I can make it because I’m intelligent and have what it takes to become a journalist.

Everyone needs someone like that to be there for them, whether it’s your best friend, a significant other, a relative, or even a teacher.

Your experience is up to you

I’ve learned that I can make it through four years of college. I know I have what it takes to be successful. I’ve created better study habits, and I take some time to just have fun and clear my head of AP style and deadlines.

College was tough when it came to adjusting for me, but it’s a different experience for everyone. You could go to college and love every second of it, while another person misses home and has a hard time fitting in.

What it really comes down to is you. You have to decide whether or not you’re going to go to a party or study for your chemistry final. You have to decide if you’re surrounding yourself with positive people. You have to decide if you’re on the right career path for you. It’s up to you whether you have an amazing college experience.

About the Author

Samantha Ickes

Samantha Ickes

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