Advice From A College Freshman To A High School Senior

Advice From A College Freshman To A High School Senior

Don’t be put off from college because it reflects life — good, bad, great, horrifying — sometimes tomorrow is better, and sometimes it isn’t.
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No one tells you what to expect for college — except they do, or at least they try. Day, weeks, months before graduation you find yourself scrolling through different blogs and College Board checklists titled, “What to Expect From Campus Life,” and “What to Pack Before You Leave for College.” If you’re like me, you’re scrolling through Pinterest boards of Urban Outfitters bedding and different DIYs you can attempt to hang on your walls.

I digress.

All of these things try to prepare us: our teachers, parents, or even those horribly mismanaged blog-websites that at some point, some of us tried convincing our teachers were reliable sources.

No one before college can truly prepare you for what’s ahead.

“That won’t be acceptable in college.”

“You can’t do that in college.”

Bullshit. You can, or you won’t.

It’s up to you.

A lot of people walk on eggshells and don’t tell you that mom or dad are staying home today and you’re going to have to hold your own hand and haul that ass to class or the library or to get those 500 pages of reading done before 8 a.m. tomorrow. I’m not trying to scare you, even though most of it still scares me. I still refuse to go to the dining commons by myself.

But never once have I regretted coming to college — mostly because of how much fun it is.

Between the late nights of homework, or even on those same exact nights, you’re surrounded by great things and great people. You’re watching weird movies with friends, talking about rock climbing with your favorite professor, or laying in the middle of the lacrosse field looking at the stars and listening to Hozier’s album on constant repeat. But, some bad nights tend to find their way in between those good ones. There have been nights where my roommate has walked in on me sobbing in my bed, cradling a unicorn pillow and sobbing that I’m not meant for college — that I’m not cut out for this and that I should’ve taken that year off that plenty of others recommended to me. But then I think about how much I would have missed if I really didn’t come to Eastern: the friends, the memories, and the growing I’ve done.

Don’t be put off from college because it reflects life — good, bad, great, horrifying — sometimes tomorrow is better, and sometimes it isn’t. That’s up to you. College gives you the chance to get through those good and bad days and find yourself through the process. Find yourself without others telling you how.

As people, we never stop growing. Physically, mentally, emotionally — we grow and adapt and change more and more into who we are and who we are meant to be. I have learned so much about myself since I first got to Eastern. I truly realized how bad of a procrastinator I am, that a business major isn’t for me, and that I aspire to live a life like Bill from the Dining Commons.

But there’s so much more that this new environment offers you: a chance to start over or renew.

You’re a brand new person. You can start over, although I do not recommend it. Stay true to yourself. Take advantage of the seeds those who have gone before you have planted within and let them grow, no matter the soil they’re in. Continue to find yourself in this new place you’re about to enter, and never stop growing. Explore things that interest you. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there or try new things — you’ll never know if a new interest finds you. Surround yourself with good people that you feel comfortable around and allow you to grow.

So, my advice to you, class of 2017, is to go find yourself.

Cover Image Credit: Bearing Arms

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​An Open Letter To The People Who Don’t Tip Their Servers

This one's for you.
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Dear Person Who Has No Idea How Much The 0 In The “Tip:" Line Matters,

I want to by asking you a simple question: Why?

Is it because you can't afford it? Is it because you are blind to the fact that the tip you leave is how the waiter/waitress serving you is making their living? Is it because you're just lazy and you “don't feel like it"?

Is it because you think that, while taking care of not only your table but at least three to five others, they took too long bringing you that side of ranch dressing? Or is it just because you're unaware that as a server these people make $2.85 an hour plus TIPS?

The average waiter/waitress is only supposed to be paid $2.13 an hour plus tips according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

That then leaves the waiter/waitress with a paycheck with the numbers **$0.00** and the words “Not a real paycheck." stamped on it. Therefore these men and women completely rely on the tips they make during the week to pay their bills.

So, with that being said, I have a few words for those of you who are ignorant enough to leave without leaving a few dollars in the “tip:" line.

Imagine if you go to work, the night starts off slow, then almost like a bomb went off the entire workplace is chaotic and you can't seem to find a minute to stop and breathe, let alone think about what to do next.

Imagine that you are helping a total of six different groups of people at one time, with each group containing two to 10 people.

Imagine that you are working your ass off to make sure that these customers have the best experience possible. Then you cash them out, you hand them a pen and a receipt, say “Thank you so much! It was a pleasure serving you, have a great day!"

Imagine you walk away to attempt to start one of the 17 other things you need to complete, watch as the group you just thanked leaves, and maybe even wave goodbye.

Imagine you are cleaning up the mess that they have so kindly left behind, you look down at the receipt and realize there's a sad face on the tip line of a $24.83 bill.

Imagine how devastated you feel knowing that you helped these people as much as you could just to have them throw water on the fire you need to complete the night.

Now, realize that whenever you decide not to tip your waitress, this is nine out of 10 times what they go through. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to realize that this is someone's profession — whether they are a college student, a single mother working their second job of the day, a new dad who needs to pay off the loan he needed to take out to get a safer car for his child, your friend, your mom, your dad, your sister, your brother, you.

If you cannot afford to tip, do not come out to eat. If you cannot afford the three alcoholic drinks you gulped down, plus your food and a tip do not come out to eat.

If you cannot afford the $10 wings that become half-off on Tuesdays plus that water you asked for, do not come out to eat.

If you cannot see that the person in front of you is working their best to accommodate you, while trying to do the same for the other five tables around you, do not come out to eat. If you cannot realize that the man or woman in front of you is a real person, with their own personal lives and problems and that maybe these problems have led them to be the reason they are standing in front of you, then do not come out to eat.

As a server myself, it kills me to see the people around me being deprived of the money that they were supposed to earn. It kills me to see the three dollars you left on a $40 bill. It kills me that you cannot stand to put yourself in our shoes — as if you're better than us. I wonder if you realize that you single-handedly ruined part of our nights.

I wonder if maybe one day you will be in our shoes, and I hope to God no one treats you how you have treated us. But if they do, then maybe you'll realize how we felt when you left no tip after we gave you our time.

Cover Image Credit: Hailea Shallock

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14 Honest College Things The Class Of 2023 Needs To Know ~Before~ Fall Semester

Sit down, be humble.

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To The Class of 2023,

Before you start your college career, please know:

1. Nobody...and I mean nobody gives a shit about your AP Calculus scores.

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" I got a 5 in Calc AB AND BC, a 5 in AP Literature, awh but I only got a 4 in AP Chem"

2. THE SAME GOES FOR YOUR SAT/ACT SCORES + nobody will know what you're talking about because they changed the test like 10 times since.

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3. College 8 AMs are not the same as your 0 period orchestra class in 12th grade.

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4. You're going to get rejected from a lot of clubs and that does not make you a failure.

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5. If you do get into your clubs, make sure not to overwhelm or overcommit yourself.

visual representation of what it looks like when you join too many clubs

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6. It's OK to realize that you don't want to be pre-med or you want to change majors.

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7. There will ALWAYS ALWAYS be someone who's doing better than you at something but that doesn't mean you're behind.

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8. "I'm a freshman but sophomore standin-" No, you don't have to clarify that, you'll sound like an asshole.

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9. You may get your first ever B-, C+ or even D OR EVEN A W in your life. College is meant to teach you how to cope with failure.

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10. Go beyond your comfort zone. Join a theatre club if you're afraid of public speaking. Join an animal rescue club if you're afraid of animals. College is learning more about yourself.

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11. Scholarships do exist. APPLY APPLY APPLY.

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12. Don't try to brag about all the stuff you did in high school, you'll just sound like a weenie hut jr. scout

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13. Understand and be sensitive to the fact that everybody around you has a different experience and story of getting to university.

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14. You're going to be exposed to people with different opinions and views, don't fight them. Instead, try to explain your perspective and listen to their reasoning as well.

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