University: in grade 12 I was so excited about university, the pressure, the city, even being away from home. Come August, I did not want to leave. I was so scared, I didn’t know if Carleton was right for me. But you know what? I went anyway, and it took me forever to find friends. I joined the skating team, which was great, but early in the morning, and I made some amazing friends. I became friends with my roommate and her friends. But academically, I didn’t feel fulfilled. I was sitting through lectures, bored, stocking Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest. The thing is, I really thought it would get better. Come April, it felt real, like I was stuck. I mean, don’t get me wrong, the media world still entices me and I want to do something in the media, but Carleton was never my dream school and I knew that deep down. I never thought I would switch institutions and programs but I am, and I have learned that that is okay. Luckily, my parents are understanding and know people that can give me some great advice regarding my future. SO I have compiled this list of things that I have learned throughout my whirlwind of a year!
Lessons Learned during my first year university:
- If you are like me and don’t drink, Frosh week will suck
- If you are absolutely unsure, even a tiny bit about the school you are going to, don’t go there
- You may not make any friends the first month, maybe even the first three months
- Don’t sign a lease unless your absolutely sure you want to stay in your university or college
- Maybe grade 13 should be re-introduced?
- If you change what you want to do its not a big deal, as I experienced throughout my whole first year
- My film TA gave me the best advice ever: if you want to do something else, do that something else, don’t stay here cause you feel obliged. (SO GOOD RIGHT)
- Do make the best of it, even if you don’t enjoy it 100% of the time
- Don’t shop a lot (trust me on this one)
- Friends are great, but don’t let them be the reason you stay or go
- Find something you like to do
- Sometimes you don’t need go to university or college, sometimes staying home for a year is what is best or trying out a really cool abroad program, because you can always defer acceptances.
- Do reach out to people in the program you want and see how they truly like it, even former grads of your program will be helpful
- If your city has more than one type of institution look into those, hey maybe you will discover a program you like
- Talk to someone, for me it was my mom, I cannot tell you how many times I cried over Skype to my mom, there are many options available.
- Trust me, its okay to not to know what you want, just be sure to really research things; programs, student life, the area, walk around the city, get a feel for the campus. Do the buildings enthrall you? The city? The restaurants?
- Finally a year is not wasted! You will have a learning experience regardless of your feelings about the institutions. I know I had a rewarding and eye opening experience and you will too!