It’s actually sad how many important life skills our high schools fail to teach us before shipping us off to college or into the real adult world. Here are a few things high school didn’t teach me:
1. How to study.
Here I am in my sophomore year of college still trying to figure out how to study for my exams because I was never actually taught how.
2. How to pack my stuff and move.
I had no idea how difficult this would be until I had to do it.
3. How to do my taxes.
Also, that taxes are a thing you need to do.
4. How to deal with the FAFSA and student loans.
Seriously, why do they not yet have a class on these things?
5. How to create a grocery list.
What kinds of things are supposed to go on grocery lists? How do you plan meals?
6. How to create a resume.
Turns out "I used to be in some clubs and one time I worked at that one place." isn't sufficient.
7. How to write a cover letter.
I'm not even really sure what a cover letter is, to be honest.
8. How to resolve unpleasant situations with other people.
I never really had any difficulties with this in high school (or now, for that matter), but I think they basically just sent you to the office and sat you down and yelled for a while and told you to stay away from the person you were having issues with. What if in the future I have a terrible roommate and I need to effectively communicate with her? How am I to know what to do then?
9. How to stay safe when going out.
It’s amazing how many people get to college and don’t realize that they shouldn’t let a stranger hand them a drink.
10. How to save money.
Also, how important it is to save money.
11. How to vote.
I was lucky enough to have a great government teacher who made sure we all became registered to vote, but nobody ever gave any other information beyond that. Perhaps voting is just one of those things that’s so simple now for them that they feel it requires no in-depth explanation?
12. How to pay bills.
Do I mail them? Are they online? Do they come EVERY month?!
13. How to manage stress.
Because high school stress doesn’t even begin to compare to college stress, and college stress probably doesn’t even touch real world, post-grad stress. How in the world could our high schools be okay with sending us out into this mess without first teaching us to keep our stress levels in check?
14. How to use social media without hurting future prospects.
There was not nearly enough emphasis put on the fact that employers can and will check your social media pages for inappropriate content, and that what they see could potentially prevent you from landing a job.
15. How to stay organized.
This is referring to both life in general and actual physical organization of material stuff.
16. How to be a good public speaker.
Also, how to not be utterly terrified of publicly presenting.
17. How to find the motivation to go to class every day.
In high school, there really was no option of whether or not to show up to class. That isn’t the case in college; whether or not you go depends entirely on you and the amount of motivation you’re able to muster up (which isn’t much when it’s -20 degrees outside).
18. How to make friends.
If this is a skill I did learn before I graduated high school, I must have forgotten it before getting to college.
19. How to budget.
I've bought Jimmy Johns 4 times this week.
20. How to effectively manage my time.
What am I supposed to do on weeks where I have two meetings, a test, a quiz, a paper due, and various other homework and social commitments? How am I supposed to get it all done?
21. How to buy a car or house.
I’m not to this point yet, but I will be at some point in the future and I’ll be completely lost.
22. How to identify and end poor relationships; how to create and maintain good relationships.
Friendships, family relationships, and romantic relationships are all tested, and it would be good to know how to handle them.
23. How to balance a checkbook.
I was actually shocked to learn that people still use checks…even people my age! Also, I’ve come upon situations where it would be really handy to have checks, but since I was told back in high school that they’re basically no longer relevant, I didn’t bother getting any.
24. How to change the oil in my car.
This would be a sort of useful skill to have since it’s something that needs done so often. (Not that I actually think I’d change my car’s oil, but still… a good thing to know).
25. How to actually make decisions on my own.
What would I ever do without my mother?