What I Learned During My First Semester of College

It’s been a long, emotional semester. I moved six hundred miles away from my family, I went from walking around a high school to walking around Manhattan, and I started college at one of the largest private universities in the United States of America (and the world).

These four months have been a learning experience. So here are some of the lessons I’ve gathered.

1.) Adults aren’t always right.

Adults have just as many stakes in life as you do. They will play angles, they will be immature, they will cut corners, and they will not hesitate to take you down with them. If you threaten them, if you question them, you better learn how to defend yourself.

2.) Family is the most important thing.

I spent so long pushing my family away and running after this big-shot career. I thought I needed to be here to do it. But the truth is, I can make my own career – anywhere I want.

3.) You can’t run away from your past.

When I came out here, I thought I had something to prove to the people who hurt me. I thought that I was getting away, starting a new life. But the reality is, you don’t get to just walk away from your past. You have to cry. You have to face it.

4.) Some things are worth fighting for.

Your innocence, your heart, your abstinence (from whatever you choose to abstain from), are yours and yours alone. Don’t ever let anybody tell you otherwise.

5.) Classes are only as important as you make them.

You don’t have to love your class, but you do have to recognize the importance of passing.

6.) College is not about grade-grubbing.

You don’t always have to worry about getting perfect grades. You’ll get Bs rather than As, you won’t get a perfect 4.0, you’ll have to fight to stand out in class. College isn’t easy. If it was, everyone would do it.

7.) Skipping class isn’t always a bad thing.

You know better than anyone when you need to go to class and when you don’t. If you can make better use of your time, I highly suggest it. In many classes, your professor won’t even notice you’re missing. And, in other classes, your professor will understand an absence or two. Your health, rest, and mental stability are irreplaceable.

8.) You have to make difficult decisions as an adult. Make ones that you’re going to be able to live with.

Sometimes the right thing to do is not the easy thing to do. Don’t screw it up.

This has been a rough semester for me, but it’s also been an experience that I’ll never forget. Thanks for following me on this journey. I’m excited to see what next semester brings.

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Finals Week

I’m sorry for the wait between posts. I’ve been so, so busy.

I’ve been working on my transfer. The reactions I received from friends, followers, and family were mostly positive, which is amazing.

I can’t tell you how much that means to me. I’ve discussed it with my adviser, and one of my professors even offered to write me a letter of recommendation. I’ve been pulling all of that together. Can you feel the excitement?

I’ve also been preparing for finals.

Finals season is a nightmare. I’ve explained my classes already, but I don’t know that you fully understand the pressure. Last week, I had three papers, a quiz, a presentation, and an oral examination for French. And that was just on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

As of eight o’clock this morning, I am officially done with classes for the semester. I have one paper to finish this weekend, then two finals next Thursday afternoon. I leave for Howell on Thursday night. Then, I’m finally on winter break.

I wish I had something more interesting or profound to say about my first semester in college. Maybe I’ll do a wrap-up next week. There’s a lot that needs to be said. It’s been a life-changing four months. I’ve learned more about myself than I did during four years of high school.

We’ll talk again soon.

Misadventures is Moving

Today, I finished my transfer application Michigan State University. After speaking with several admission workers, I think I have more than a fighting chance of being accepted.

So, I’ve chosen to make this decision official by telling my followers about it.

Let me answer the important questions first. Yes, I will be finishing out the year at NYU. I have no intention of dropping mid-year and transferring. And yes, there are obstacles I still need to overcome to make this possible. I’m going to need the entire summer to do it.

During the rest of my time here, I sincerely hope you continue to read Misadventures. We’re only halfway there, and we have so much more to see and do before our time in Manhattan ends.

If you’ve been reading closely, it isn’t a secret that I’ve been struggling with homesickness and depression. These are important factors, but they are not the reason I’m choosing to leave.

I was awarded a large scholarship to attend NYU. At the time of my acceptance, the difference between my scholarship and tuition seemed reasonable.

Unfortunately, NYU constantly increases their tuition. Scholarships do not increase accordingly. My student loan allotment will not cover the difference next year – and no amount of work at the library will bridge the gap. I refuse to force my parents to pay for my college education. That’s not who I am.

Besides which, there’s a perfectly qualified (and more affordable) university in East Lansing. MSU has one of the best journalism programs in the country. There’s no reason why I can’t excel there.

There’s something else that needs to be addressed. I can’t live with college students. If I come home to illegal marijuana or alcohol in my dorm one more time, I’m going to lose my shit. And there is absolutely no affordable housing in Manhattan.

There’s a special place for Manhattan in my heart. It’s wonderful for a visit, and I’ll definitely come back.

But this is my official announcement to you. All that I can hope for is your support and understanding. The kind words and wishes you all supplied when I moved out here made this opportunity worthwhile. I will always look back on this as a positive, learning experience.

And I’m grateful for it.