When they tell you that time goes by fast in college, I can assure you they are not kidding! I came in with expectations of how my first year would go, and although it didn’t turn out how I had planned, I wouldn’t trade these past 9 months for the world.
If I met now the person that I was in move on day, they would be complete strangers. I arrived at CMU as a naive, dependent, anxious girl, and the growth I have achieved just over this past year has been monumental.
Here in college I have found confidence in who I am. Coming to campus I was insecure, worried about the way that I looked, what people thought of me, and what everyone else was doing. But quickly I had to learn that college is not about everyone else, college is about me and finding myself. I am evolving each and everyday, becoming one step closer to the person I am constantly striving to be, and I have learned to be comfortable with the idea of gradual self improvement.
One of the greatest strides I have made while being here is becoming more independent. Coming from home, I had been put in very few situations where I didn’t have guidance or support from either family, friends, teachers or coaches. College has taught me to take initiative on things that will better my life and my future, develop problem solving skills, and discipline myself when necessary. Being away from home terrified me 8 months ago, but looking back, I needed nothing more than to get away.
Besides growth in my personal development, I also discovered my passion. Throughout the year I practically considered every possible major CMU has to offer, but I can now confidently say I discovered what I was looking for all along. I am going to pursue a degree in Integrative Public Relations which combines 3 of my favorite things; writing, communicating, and working with people. I will also be minoring in both Leadership and Marketing which I feel is going to prepare me well for a well rounded entrance into the real world.
I will admit that this year has had a slew of highs and lows. From meeting new friends, joining new organizations, finding a job, to losing friends, getting overworked, getting sick, lacking motivation and everything in between. But that’s what college is all about, enjoying the good moments, and learning from the bad ones.
I’ve learned that college is so much more than what you learn in the classroom (while of course that is a major part). It’s about learning to take on life by yourself for the very first time. It’s about trying new things, meeting new people, finding new likes and dislikes, and overall broadening your perspective on life.
College has taught me one very crucial lesson, to never take for granted the ones that you love. Being away from my parents, siblings, and best friends took a heavier toll on me than I had anticipated, and now I cherish every opportunity I get to spend time with those who have helped me get to where I am. The people that I have met this year have challenged me, grown me, and helped me discover things about myself that I couldn’t have ever imagined, and have only grown the overwhelming circle of support I am so grateful to have.
The best advice I have to any incoming freshman would be to go into the year expecting the unexpected. You can plan and imagine how it will go all that you want, but I promise you this: college has some curve balls and it is not afraid to throw them at you. I have learned so much in and outside of the classroom, it truly is essential that you make the most of your time because you only get four years, you don’t want to miss it.
I have so much to takeaway from this year. The lessons I have learned and friends I have made have benefited my life in so many ways, and I cannot wait for further growth in the three years to come.
College is quite the ride, so strap yourself in and get ready to enjoy it.