College: Expectations Vs. Reality
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College: Expectations Vs. Reality

The real college experience.

College: Expectations Vs. Reality

For the most part, high school seniors have no idea what they’re heading in to by the time they head off to college. Sure, we’ve been given this list of general guide lines to follow, but unless you’ve been there, you just really do not understand.

We know what the movies showed us, and what our high school teachers drilled in to our brains, but that’s about it. Unfortunately, nearly all of that information is totally wrong. So on that first day of school, we walk around campus like lost puppies. If you go to Northern Michigan University, you can spot what we call a Yellow Bagger from a mile away, even if you don’t have a yellow bag from the bookstore. We just know.

As a third year, these are just a few expectations I had and the realities I have come to know.

1. Expectation: Parking passes guarantee you a spot. Spots for everyone!

Reality: If you want a parking spot, get there four hours early and keep circling.You see a spot two rows down. You’re going for it. Then, you see a second car pull up. They’ve seen it too. Now, it’s a race. There can only be one winner. In the background, O Fortuna is playing.

2. Expectation: Your professors will never ever under any circumstances accept late assignments.

Reality:This one is actually kind of true, depending on how unlucky you are. Most of my professors have accepted late work until a certain point, simply taking away a percentage of your total grade each day that it is late.

3. Expectation: High school was so last year. Everyone in college is super mature.

Reality: LOL, we’re all twelve year olds who are paying a massive amount of money to be in a classroom where they’re not sure what’s going on.

4. Expectation: Your RA is going to be super strict. They are not your friend.

Reality: You and your RA might end up being best friends. Seriously, for the most part, they’re great. Loved my RAs. Utilize them. They really do care for your well-being.

5. Expectation: Frats are the biggest jerks and can’t be trusted. Sorority girls are all a bunch of bimbos.

Reality: Frat guys are some of the sweetest gentlemen I’ve ever met. They might still throw their parties, but they don’t walk around looking and acting like Johnny Bravo. And the sorority sisters are smart, driven women who are building the basis of the futures on leadership and loyalty.

6. Expectation: The dining hall food is all fake and disgusting. It all comes out of bags.

Reality: As someone who works in dining services on campus, the chefs really do care about the food they make. Chances are, when things go wrong, it wasn’t their fault. There’s student workers, faulty machinery, and about 10 different people running around the kitchen doing everything at once. Besides, mom’s meatloaf doesn’t turn out perfect 100 percent of the time either.

7. Expectation: You’ll have plenty of time to get all your homework done, sleep and eat regularly, and participate in events.

Reality: Choose half of one of those options.

8. Expectation: Everything you learn will be 100 percent useful to you in the future!

Reality: As a meteorologist, it is highly unlikely I will ever need to know how to critique certain aspects of a movie made in 1964.

9. Expectation: You will read the textbooks you are required to buy for the class.

Reality: “Alright, open your books to page 32. Alright, not you won’t need the books anymore.”

College is an interesting experience. I have yet to decide if I like it as much as I was expecting to. Not everything you learn will come from you lectures – which you definitely 100 percent should not skip even if they say they don’t take attendance – and some of this new knowledge will follow you for the rest of your life. Your professors are humans, and sometimes, they can even have a sense of humor.

You’ll learn a lot about yourself while you’re here. Whether you can handle two jobs, whether Greek life is for you, or if you’re actually destined to run for president in the future. One of the biggest lesson I’ve learned so far is that you are not your transcript. You can’t always be perfect, and as painful as that grade me, it’s okay to retake a class and learn from your mistakes. You aren’t disappointing anyone. Not all of us were raised to be child geniuses.

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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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