Being A College Student

Being A College Student

You know you're a college student when...
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The life of a college student can be rather…adventurous, if I may say. College is said to be the best four years of your life. That could be true for some people, while others may disagree.

As a senior in high school, most students think they can’t get wait to graduate and move on to college for this is when their life will begin. Many students plan to go away to college while others like to stay close to home. I’m sure many have already wondered what college will be like. Will it be just like high school, will it be fun or will it be nerve wrecking? You can never really know until you are actually in college. While you may ask others you know who are in college about their experience, don’t get ahead of yourself and think it would be awesome because everyone you know in college told you that. Everyone has a different experience.

The life of a college student isn’t always what it seems like in the movies. There’s more to it.

First off, one of the best things about being a college student is scheduling. You get to make your schedule how you want it. You get to choose what classes you want to take on what day, depending on when it’s offered. After years of going to school and having your schedule made out for you, you finally get to take control of what you want. The college schedule of course is very different from the high school schedule. Your classes are not 45 minutes long. But you get to be flexible with your classes because you’re making the schedule. So there’s no more complaining about hating your advisor for giving you a crappy schedule because you’re the one who made it. And the best part of making your schedule is you get to choose what time you want to start your day, based on the classes of course. And for the record, most college students never have to take Friday classes; so you got yourself a three day weekend for the whole semester.

Another thing with classes in college is that you were probably told in high school that you need to take a history class, what they didn’t mention is that you had up to at least 10 choices of history classes and some other classes that aren’t history-based you could take that would satisfy that history course you would need in order to graduate.

Moving on from classes and scheduling, is actually the college experience itself. When you become a college student, you get to explore your interests, things that you love. You get to discover yourself as a person all while learning these new things. When you pick a major you are choosing a field of study to specialize. You are finally finding your interest, if you haven’t already. Being able to finally decide on something is one of the biggest reliefs for a college student. Having to choose something to study is a hard decision in doing so you are choosing the path for your life, a career goal. And choosing something you are going to be doing for many years of your life is a tough choice. You want to do something you like and something you have of interest. So in the future, you won’t regret it because you are at this job you hate. Keep in mind when you are making a choice for a career path, don’t do it for the money. Because even with that paycheck, it won’t be worth it.

As a college student you should extend your connections. The best way to get around or even find a job is to know people. The more people you know the better connections you will have built up. Getting involved with your school is also a great way to really being a part of something. Join clubs and get involved with campus activities, make friends and get to know your professors because you’re probably going to need recommendations for graduate school.

Now like all schools, every student has to deal with exams. Exams in college are a big deal, especially when it’s 35 percent of your grade and that’s just for one exam. Taking an exam in college should never be taken lightly or, “I’ll do better on the next one,” because when you see that GPA drop, you’re going to wish you had done better on both. There are no do-overs in college, I mean unless you want to take the class over again, but you could’ve saved yourself from doing that had you taken it seriously the first time.

Since we are on the topic of exams, I’d like to say this. You know you’re a real college student when...

1. You are staying up all night studying for an exam the next day with a can of red bull next to you or maybe even coffee.

2. You are up the whole night writing an essay that was assigned two weeks ago and is due the next day. (Normally you’re lucky if it’s due the next day. Most professors want it in by midnight.)

3. When writing an essay you have no idea what you’re writing about, but you’re just writing a bunch of rubbish. (In my defense, those papers always get the best grades, but do not do that)

4. And lastly, your eating habits are so bad that you don’t realize until your room is piled with junk because you haven’t left since you we're busy studying (I hope).

But don’t exams scare you. It’ll be over. Yes, it will be stressful having to spend such a nice, sunny weekend studying for a biology exam, but once it’s over you can walk out the room and let out a nice breath of air you’ve been holding in.

There’s a lot more to being a college student of course, I just thought I would touch up on a few important things. But you shouldn’t let the word college scare you or a few classes hold you back from your dreams, just go for it. Four years may seem like a lot, but it will fly by.

Trust me.

Cover Image Credit: USC Housing

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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything
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I think it's fair to say that most people remember at least one teacher who had a lasting impact on them. I have been incredibly lucky to have several teachers who I will never forget, but one individual takes the cake. So here's to you: thank you for all you have done.

Thank you for teaching me lessons not just in the textbook.

Although you taught a great lecture, class was never just limited to the contents of the course. Debates and somewhat heated conversations would arise between classmates over politics and course material, and you always encouraged open discussion. You embraced the idea of always having an opinion, and always making it be heard, because why waste your voice? You taught me to fight for things I believed in, and to hold my ground in an argument. You taught me to always think of others before doing and speaking. You showed me the power of kindness. Thank you for all the important lessons that may not have been included in the curriculum.

Thank you for believing in me.

Especially in my senior year, you believed in me when other teachers didn't. You showed me just what I could accomplish with a positive and strong attitude. Your unwavering support kept me going, especially when I melted into a puddle of tears weekly in your office. You listened to my stupid complaints, understood my overwhelming stress-induced breakdowns, and told me it was going to be okay. Thank you for always being there for me.

Thank you for inspiring me.

You are the epitome of a role model. Not only are you intelligent and respected, but you have a heart of gold and emit beautiful light where ever you go. You showed me that service to others should not be looked at as a chore, but something to enjoy and find yourself in. And I have found myself in giving back to people, thanks to your spark. Thank you for showing me, and so many students, just how incredible one person can be.

Thank you for changing my life.

Without you, I truly would not be where I am today. As cliche as it sounds, you had such a remarkable impact on me and my outlook on life. Just about a year has passed since my graduation, and I'm grateful to still keep in touch. I hope you understand the impact you have made on me, and on so many other students. You are amazing, and I thank you for all you have done.

Cover Image Credit: Amy Aroune

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3 Things i learned at pride in NYC

The people, the flags, and the glitter are even more magical in person.

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On Sunday, June 24th, my girlfriend, my best friend and I, all hopped on a train to the World Trade Center in New York City. After a short subway ride, we arrived at 16th Street, where the parade festivities began. Dressed in our decked out rainbow attire, we entered a vibrant crowd of flag wielding, self-loving having, beautiful people. Pride is something the LGBTQIA+ community knows how to celebrate well. Lesbihonest, I think its safe to say that the LGBTQ+ community essentially created loving yourself, along with embracing those around you, whether you know them or not. While at Pride, I learned a few things about myself, about how to love others, and what it means to be apart of a community.

1. Love thy neighbor

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Because pride is such an important event to the LGBTQIA+ community, the number of people that attend each year is increasing by the thousands. There were an expected 48,000 people this year and when you're amerced in such a large crowd keeping your cool is super important. I learned that in most cases, giving love will result in receiving it, especially in 84-degree weather. So when I was making my way through energetic crowds, I used my p's and q's and was met with the same energy from strangers.

2. At pride, the dress code is no dress code

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If you're in the mood to wear your birthday suit, glitter, or witty t-shirt and celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community as a member or as an ally, pride is the place to be! The extravagant outfits and expression of self-pride through clothes and even lack of clothes made me feel extremely comfortable in my own outfit. I think we all have had our share of being uncomfortable in our skin or clothes, but being around thousands of people dressed in whatever made them most comfortable that day was a beautiful experience.

3. Pride is not solely about the LGBTIA+ community

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Heritage of Pride, the nonprofit organization that organizes New York City's LGBT pride events each year, strives to work towards creating a future that consists of equal rights for all under the law. The march is an annual civil rights demonstration that brings awareness to the fight against aids, the Black Lives Matter movement and memorializes those who have lost their lives to illness, violence and neglect. This year over 450 different organizations participated in the march and about 110 floats were shown, each float bringing awareness to different organizations.

As an Afro-Latina, lesbian, I felt very represented and extremely grateful to participate in a civil rights event such as pride. The opportunity to educate myself and even feel more comfortable in my own skin, and enjoy myself with the people I love most, is something I will truly cherish. Hopefully, my experiences and knowledge will expand next year at the 2019 NYC pride!

Cover Image Credit:

Em Goss

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