Why ​College Teaches More Than Just Academics
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Student Life

Why ​College Teaches More Than Just Academics

What matters most in college are the life lessons that will make you a stronger person.

Why ​College Teaches More Than Just Academics

When I look back at freshman year, which was over three years ago, I think about the person I was then versus the person I am now. To some, college flies by and seems to be over in the blink of an eye. But for me, three and half years of college (and counting) has seemed like a lifetime. During the past few years, I have gone through so many things that have changed me and forced me to grow up. I have dealt with some punches and have had to rise up in some challenging situations.

For me, the end to college has been a long time coming. I have made so many memories and have had some wonderful experiences, but my time in college has been a major growing period and growing pains are real. There have been so many days in college where I have wanted ready to quit, but in the end, I thank God I didn’t. The trials made me stronger and the lessons I learned have molded me into who I am and who I want to be. In every phase of life, easy or hard, we must learn and better ourselves. I thank college for all the lessons I was taught, especially those outside of the classroom. Sure, we go to college to take classes and to get an education, but what I really learned outside of the classroom has been the most beneficial to me.

The biggest lesson I learned is that the more hardships you face, the stronger you become and the easier the next one is. No, college wasn’t absolutely terrible and there wasn’t an extremely monumental occurrence that completely changed my life, but it was still hard. Very hard at times. Between being a student, an athlete, a teammate, a girlfriend, and a pet owner, I have had to find time for many different things and many people. I have had to be there for others and support them in their tough times all while handling my own tough times. I have had to learn how to balance my priorities as well as manage my time. I have had to adapt to being away from home at an out-of-state school and try to ignore my homesickness. I have had to mourn the loss of friendships that ended when my friends and I went our separate ways for college. I have had to swallow my pride and learn not everything goes my way or the way I want it to.

College presents many new experiences and many of them brought unfamiliar challenges. I didn’t have experience in how to deal with a lot of things. But after I went through some of the experiences, I grew and the hard times that have come after have been much easier.

Through other people’s actions, I have learned who I want to become and who I want to avoid becoming. In college, you are forced to be around many different types of people. Some of the people you meet are amazing, genuine people while others are completely different and don’t share the same values. This was a hard thing for me to swallow. In high school, I was around many girls with the same morals, values, and work ethic as I have. In college, I was exposed to people that came from completely different lifestyles and had very little morals. It didn’t take long to learn that there were people I didn’t respect. These people did serve a purpose though and that was to show me to stick to what I believe in and to not let college get the best of who I am inside.

Lastly, I learned that I am my own biggest advocate. While in college, you may meet some great friends and great mentors, or even some great professors, but at the end of the day, your biggest ally is yourself. There are many people who want to help you, but at the end of the day, you can’t rely on others to help you get where you want to go. You have to push yourself and advocate for yourself. You have to speak up and fight for what you want. Having allies or trusting in other people won’t cut it. At the end of the day, you have to go out and seek opportunities and make them yours.

Sure, the classroom provides many educational lessons but the most important lessons in college are the life lessons we are presented with. In high school, we are sheltered and are often reliant upon our parents/guardians to provide for us and help us through everything. Well, college can be a wake-up call. You have to stand on your own two feet and guide the direction of your life. College had many moments, both good and bad, but if there’s anything I will take with me, it’s the fact that I have matured, grown, and learned who I need to be in order to make the best possible life for myself.

College did, in fact, change me for the better.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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