To The High School Senior Deciding If You Should Do Band In College, I Have Two Words For You

To The High School Senior Deciding If You Should Do Band In College, I Have Two Words For You

DO IT.
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Dear high school band senior,

You're so close to graduating, and the excitement is probably eating you up inside. You can't wait to get to college, make new friends, have new experiences, and pursue your dreams. If you're like I was, there's one thing you just don't want to leave behind-band. If you're even more like me, you'll be convinced you're not, and never will be, good enough to be a member of a college band. Allow me to tell you what you could miss out on if you don't at least try.

You could miss out on pushing yourself past your comfort zone.

The day I auditioned for the Razorback Marching Band was one of the most nerve-wracking days of my life. I barely slept the night before, I was too nervous to eat anything that morning, and to top it all off, I forgot my wallet at home and had no money with me. It wasn't starting off to be a great day, but once I finished auditioning, I was so proud of myself. I had done something that I never believed could be possible — auditioning for the band of the largest university in the state of Arkansas.

SEE ALSO: 10 Reasons Band Kids Are The Best Kids

I've learned to push myself through long, hot rehearsals. I've become accustomed to waking up at 4 a.m. for early morning game days. I've high marched for longer than anyone should ever have to endure. None of these are easy, but college band pushes you past your supposed limits, and you'll be amazed at what you can do.

You could miss out on some of your best friends.

I think the most common fear incoming freshmen have is the fear of not finding any friends at school. When you join a college band, it's almost impossible for that fear to come to fruition. You're literally thrown into a group of people who want you to enjoy your experience, like they have so far, so you almost have to try to NOT make friends.

I have met my college best friends and girls I envision standing next to me on my wedding day through my college band. Band friends keep you entertained on 14-hour bus rides to watch your team play. They suffer along with you when you're running on 10 hours of sleep in the past 48 hours. They're the people you wouldn't want to live without, and they alone make deciding to do band in college worth it.

You could miss out on incredible (free) experiences.

When you're in a college marching band, you get some really great perks. You get into all home (and some away) football games for free, and at some schools, you can get into basketball games for free. You get to travel to some pretty great places to cheer on your team(s). You perform in venues you never thought you'd step foot in, in front of people you never thought you'd perform for. Being in a college band is really a sweet deal, you play for them, and they give you a wonderful college experience.

You could miss out on learning about other majors besides your own.

One big misconception about college band is that you have to be a music major to participate, but that couldn't be further from the truth. There are majors from every college within the university represented in the band. Give me a major and I probably know someone who is studying that. I have gained respect for college majors I once thought of as "easy" or "cop-out" majors, which never would have happened had I not followed my dream of being in a college band.

So high school band seniors, I know it's scary. I know it's intimidating, and I know you might not believe you can do it. But you'll miss out on all of this and so much more if you don't even try. So DO IT and don't look back, because, boy, is it fun.

Cover Image Credit: Victoria Tarkington

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Saying Goodbye To Freshman Year

"High School goes by fast, but college goes by even faster."
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“High School goes by fast, but college goes by even faster”, we’ve all heard it and probably all ignored it as well. I mean time is time. It moves at the same pace no matter what you’re doing right?

Nope.

High School is over, I’m now a freshman in college and it’s April. I’m sitting here in my dorm looking at all my clothes, and bins thinking, how in the hell will this all fit in my car again? It is crazy, I need to be thinking about all of this now because there is one month of my freshman year left, just one.

All I can keep thinking is how? Wasn’t it just last week that I moved into my cozy room at the end of the hall, or just yesterday that I ran home to two hundred beautiful new sisters? As much as it seems like yesterday, it wasn’t.

It was almost eight months ago that I stepped onto this campus as a freshman, now it is my last four weeks and they are jam-packed. From formal to finals I am in the home stretch of my first year of college. I just registered for my classes next semester, and can’t get it through my head that I will soon be a sophomore.

While walking around campus I still catch myself thinking, wow I am really here. I am a college student, at a school, I fall more in love with every day. So, how can I be a sophomore now when I feel like I just got here?

Yes, I still have three amazing years of college ahead of me, and I can’t wait to see what those years have in store in for me. But, I just can’t help but feel a little sad that I won’t be a freshman anymore. I won’t be the youngest in my sorority family, I won’t be coming back to a dorm every night.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am stoked to live in an apartment next year with my absolute best friends. And you definitely could have heard me saying “I am so over this whole dorm thing” once or twice this semester, but now I can’t help but see all the things I’ll miss.

Freshman year is just unique. You get this giant clean slate, a fresh start. And it is just waiting to see what you’ll do with it. It truly is a year of firsts. My first failure, the first time being on my own, my first time not knowing anyone in my classes. Yes, that can all be a lot to take on, I was terrified at the start of the school year. But before I knew it, I had a routine, I had friends, I had a life here.

And this life surpassed all my expectations. I have a home away from home. I have friends that I know will be my bridesmaids some day. I have experiences that I’ll never forget.

Now as I head back home for the summer I couldn’t be more excited to be with my friends there and my family. But, I also couldn’t be sadder to leave my friends here, even if it’s only for three months because they’ve become another kind of family.

Despite leaving freshman year behind, we have so many more memories to make whether it’s doing the Seminole chop in Doak, coordinating our Halloween costumes, or just chilling at the house. We’ve all come so far this year, and I can’t wait to see just how far we go. So bring it on Sophomore year, I’m ready for ya.

Cover Image Credit: Cameron Kira

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To The High School Graduating Seniors

I know you're ready, but be ready.

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Seniors,

I am not going to say anything about senioritis because I was ready to get out of there and I'm sure you are too; however, in your last months living at home you should take advantage of the luxuries you will not have in a college dorm. The part of college seen in movies is great, the rest of it is incredibly inconvenient. It is better to come to terms with this While you still have plenty of time to prepare and enjoy yourself.

Perhaps one of the most annoying examples is the shower. Enjoy your hot, barefoot showers now because soon enough you will have no water pressure and a drain clogged with other people's hair. Enjoy touching your feet to the floor in the shower and the bathroom because though it seems weird, it's a small thing taken away from you in college when you have to wear shoes everywhere.

Enjoy your last summer with your friends. After this summer, any free time you take is a sacrifice. For example, if you want to go home for the summer after your freshman year and be with your friends, you have to sacrifice an internship. If you sacrifice an internship, you risk falling behind on your resume, and so on. I'm not saying you can't do that, but it is not an easy choice anymore.

Get organized. If you're like me you probably got good grades in high school by relying on your own mind. You think I can remember what I have to do for tomorrow. In college, it is much more difficult to live by memory. There are classes that only meet once or twice a week and meeting and appointments in between that are impossible to mentally keep straight. If you do not yet have an organizational system that works for you, get one.

I do not mean to sound pessimistic about school. College is great and you will meet a lot of people and make a lot of memories that will stick with you for most of your life. I'm just saying be ready.

-A freshman drowning in work

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