10 Confessions Of A First-Generation College Student

10 Confessions Of A First-Generation College Student

Being a first-generation college student can be a lot of pressure.

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I'm the first person in my family to go to a four-year university. With that comes a lot of pressure. I saw some of it coming, but I could never prepare myself for all of the obstacles that have come my way. Now that I'm about halfway done with college, I've noticed where I struggle the most.

1. I get so stressed.

We're all stressed and it's not a competition to see who has it the worst, but having added stress from something you have no control over is never easy. Being a first-generation college student means the odds are not in my favor for graduation, money is extra tight, and there's a common string of guilt among students like me. It's a lot of pressure and I feel it a lot more at certain points.

2. I get jealous of students who aren't first-generation.

There are students in my classes who I know have all these resources and an abundance of support. They grew up hearing stories of college and their whole lives they were preparing for the moment they'd go to college and make their own. I envy those kids because, for me, college is this ocean I was just thrown into. And I did want to learn to swim, but there just wasn't anyone to teach me. Within four years I'll figure it out, but it won't be easy.

3. My parents try so hard but they'll never fully understand.

I have the most supportive and thoughtful parents on the planet and I'm so thankful for that. But sometimes I go through things they can't relate to and that can be so hard to deal with. I know how bad they want to help me out and get me through any problems that might come up. At times I really wish I did have people at my disposal who have dealt with what I go through but it makes me that much stronger when I have to just learn as I go. On the other hand, I can be glad my parents raised me to be headstrong and independent.

4. There aren't enough people who get it.

The majority of professors assume that the students they're teaching have a sort of guide and automatically know exactly what to do. We're expected to have it all together and while no student is going to have their ducks in a row, it's even more unlikely with students who are going through it almost alone.

5. I'm afraid to ask for help.

There have been moments when I get completely in my head and I start thinking I'm completely on my own. I know I'm not and there are resources designated for me when I have questions, but it seems like my questions and concerns are really stupid and that they aren't real issues. I fear people will think I'm stupid, so I don't tell anyone.

6. I'm afraid to fail.

Failure is statistically more likely for first-generation students and that terrifies me. I'm so afraid that I won't amount to anything. It's scary that I could either be the first person in my family to graduate from a major university, or I could be the first to make it to one and then choke. Either way, it should be a big deal that I got into one at all, but to me, it isn't. I hold myself to the highest standards, regardless of if anyone else does the way I think. I've put all the weight on my shoulders.

7. I feel this huge pressure to make the most of the opportunity I have.

By the grace of God, and because of scholarships, aid, and programs built to help me, I'm going to college nearly for free. I'm so blessed and I really shouldn't complain about all these futile things that won't matter. But because of this opportunity, I put so much pressure on myself to do well and make the most of everything. I wish I could act like some of the things I do with my time here won't matter, but it all does. I have no room for screwing up. I have to hope the major I chose leads to something magnificent and that I do things that will benefit the greater parts of my life.

8. When I graduate, it will be the biggest deal and I'm not excited about it.

Being the first person on either side of my family to graduate from a university is such a milestone and I know it will cause a lot of attention. I know I'll be proud of myself and it'll be exciting, but part of me hopes it won't be a huge deal. College was inevitable for me. I knew all along that it would for sure, without a doubt happen, so now that I'm here and in the swing of things, it's no big thing.

9. I've been ashamed of it.

I've been ashamed of not having anyone in my family that had gone to college, especially freshman year. I didn't want anyone to know I had no idea what I was doing or how big of a struggle any of this would be for me. I never loved my family any less and it's not that I was ashamed of them, I was just embarrassed to have to do it more independently.

10. It also makes me really proud.

There has been so much personal growth with me because of how independent I've been. Every obstacle I get through makes me significantly stronger. Every time I have to ask for help, I learn something important. As I make my way through this massive learning experience, I become so much wiser. I took any bit of shame I had of where I came from and replaced it with this immense feeling of pride in where I am now and how far I can go.

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20 One-Liners That You've Exchanged With Your Roommate

"We have to take out the trash today."
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God bless the soul that shares a room with me. Thank you for endless laughter, turning off the lights when I'm already in bed, and loving me so well.

“I can't think of a caption for this. Write it for me."

This happens at least once a week, especially on the night of formal.

“If I bend over wearing these leggings can you see my underwear?"

It's better for your roomie to tell you this one than someone else.

“I'm going on day three without a shower. Does my hair look greasy?"

Even when they say no, they mean that you should really use some dry shampoo.

“You really just need to get over him. You're worth so much more than a stupid boy."

It's the sweetest, most humbling reminder after a night of tears and ice cream.

“We should probably clean tomorrow."

Said, but never done.

“Hide the candles. We have room checks tomorrow."

Sometimes you forget and you get fined.

“I'm going to walk past you and I need you to tell me if I smell bad."

See, you aren't the only one who does that.

“Wake me up in 20 minutes."

A post-class nap on a Monday never hurts until you both fall asleep for three hours.

“Do you think there are any guys in the hall? I need to get my laundry, but I'm not wearing pants."

This one is self-explanatory.

“Your leftovers smelled bad, so I threw them out."

The pungent smell seeping through the refrigerator is inevitable when you leave guacamole from Chipotle in there for two weeks.

“Can you tell me if my thesis makes sense?"

Midnight paper-writing is hard.

“Can we go to the Caf earlier? I'm so hungry already."

We're all walking grandmas in college. Dinner at 5 p.m. is a must.

“Can I wear that tomorrow?"

What's mine is yours.

“What's your cat's name again?"

This is a typical example of a burning question at two in the morning.

“We're already 10 minutes late."

We say this before every chapter meeting.

“Would it be bad if I skipped class tomorrow so I can watch 'Scandal?'"

Please say no, please say no. Just go to class with your computer and watch "Scandal" there.

“Does your throat hurt too?"

Happy flu season!

“How many ibuprofen can you take in a day?"

I don't know. Google it. I took six once and I'm still alive.

“It's only Tuesday."

It's OK. You can cry about it together.

“I love you!"

The best one. Finding a roommate that loves you on days when you don't love yourself is such a blessing. The love that we feel for the people that we live with is so special and so unique.

I'm sorry for all of the times that I've annoyed you, killed one of our plants, or been insensitive because I'm too worried about myself. Thank you for still loving me.

Shout out to all of the roommates out there. You're the bomb.

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5 Reasons Why Staying At College For The Summer Is The Ultimate Power Move

No school, no rules, summer vacation at the best place on Earth, also known as college.

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As summer begins, it brings in the joy of no more school but for most what summer really brings is the sad realization that we have to leave our favorite place and go back to our boring home town with none of our new best friends. Although some have decided to stay at college for the summer and they will soon realize why this will be the best choice that they will be making all summer.

1. NO PARENTS 

What's better than no school, warm weather, and most importantly no one to say, "Are you just going to sleep till 2:30 p.m. every day this summer?"

1. It's like the weekend, but every day

Do you know what weekends felt like during the school year when you didn't have anything to do? No? You never had any free weekends? Wow, I'm so sorry. Well, imagine a weekend that you didn't have to do anything. Now multiply that one weekend by seven and you get seven Saturday like days where you do not have a single care in the world.

3. No "Go cut the grass!"

For the sons, you know that annoying time every week when your dad is going to say, "Go cut the grass." There is nothing you can do to get out of it. Well, staying at school for the summer means no more nagging. You get to choose what you do now.

4. The bond of friendship

The friends you make when you stay at college for the summer are different than any other bond. Mostly because you all don't have a care in the world since it's summer in your favorite place. It's a right of passage to call someone your summer college best friends. These are best friends that words wouldn't do justice.

5. The townies

Everybody always wonders what happens to a college town when all the college kids go home. Well, the townies come back in full swing and take their town back. If you stay at your college, you get to experience what most can't even describe in words. To the one mid-40s guy trying to relive his glory days. To the old men hitting on the college girls at the local pub. To the weird towny creatures that make you shiver with fright as you drive past them. Have fun townies, you only have three months.

That dream of "I wish I could just stay here at college with all these people but have no responsibilities" is finally coming true.

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