My First Semester Of College Was Not What I Thought It Would Be

My First Semester Of College Was Not What I Thought It Would Be

But I guess I have to learn to bite the bullet to get my education.

My second semester of freshman year begins next week, and I'm planning to take it on by storm. My first semester was nothing less of the dull cliche you imagine, but it really helped me find my place on campus.

There are many things we hear about every freshman's first year and there are many things we are told about it. We all live it vicariously and very differently, and we all made time to develop our own opinions of what college is really like. I went to college thinking it was going to be a certain way, and I was hit really hard with the reality that what I thought it would be was not the case at all.

I was told before moving to college that I would find some of the best friends that I'll ever make in my entire life the first few weeks of college, which was not at all the case. I mean, I am pretty social. I joined a club and a sorority. I started writing for Odyssey. I got a job. But, those friends really just did not come. I know, I know. They aren't going to be handed to me and maybe I didn't put in the best effort to even make them, but honestly, I'm okay with who I've got, but it truly took me by surprise.

Aside from the best friends I never really found, I found out a lot about myself. I actually like school now, and that may not be the case for many of you, but school is actually fun to go to, for me at least. Coming from me, that's huge. I always hated elementary school and high school, and I certainly was never that person to say how much I honestly do love it like I am right now. Now that I'm in college, I get to design my own path and choose my own courses. I think that helps a lot with liking what I'm doing because it all suits me in a way.

I learned to manage my time more wisely moving to college, as crazy as that sounds. I also found that I am, indeed, a very hard worker. College pushes you, and I mean really pushes you. It's a never ending cycle, but it teaches you time management and motivation unless you're the complete opposite of me, then you do your own thing. But never the less, the push has really given me a lot of self-motivation that I never really knew I had.

I always thought that moving to college would mean endless free time and the ability to binge watch Netflix whenever I pleased. I was hit hard with the reality my first semester that it just really isn't the case. Sure, you have your free time here and there, but I've honestly never had enough free time to sit down on the couch with a bag of chips and watch Netflix for as long as I please.

Since I moved to the U, I was also hit with the hard reality of walking. Oh yes, I said it. Walking. Everywhere you go. Unless you're one of the cool kids who can whip around on your bike, like the majority of us, you're probably stuck walking. I think the first week I moved to college I walked over 30 miles, and I prayed that would be the last time I ever walked that much in one week, but honestly, I think I've walked more since then. At the U, especially living in Superblock, I've found that walking is a must and if you can't learn to walk fast, you're not going to make it to that early morning class on West Bank on time. So, to all of you incoming freshman, get ready to walk and be prepared.

Another thing that my first semester in college has taught me is that I really, really hate winter. It's almost like I've said it before. Oh, right, I have. Every single winter for the past 18 years of my life. But, as said before, you walk a lot on campus, and that walking doesn't come to a stop in the winter. I'm not really fond of the underground tunnels or the campus connector, so I stick to my endless complaints and take on the cold. Moving to the U has made me dislike winter to the most extreme level yet, but I guess I have to learn to bite the bullet to get my education.

So, maybe your freshman year was nothing like mine, or maybe you can relate to me on an extreme level, but my first semester of my freshman year has taught me a lot and showed me a lot about who I am. It sure wasn't the picture perfect first semester, but really nothing is picture perfect these days.

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22 New Things That I Want To Try Now That I'm 22

A bucket list for my 22nd year.


"I don't know about you but I'm feelin' 22," I have waited 6 long years to sing that and actually be 22! Now 22 doesn't seem like a big deal to people because you can't do anything that you couldn't do before and you're still super young. But I'm determined to make my 22nd year a year filled with new adventures and new experiences. So here's to 22.

1. Go sky diving.

What's crazier than jumping out of a plane? (Although I'll probably try indoor skydiving first.)

2. Go cliff jumping/diving.

I must be the only Rhode Islander who hasn't gone to Jamestown and jumped off a cliff.

3. Ride in a hot air balloon.

Up, up and away.

4. Try out skiing.

Cash me in the next Olympics, how bout dat.

5. Try out snow boarding.

Shawn White, I'm coming for you.

6. Go bungee jumping.

Because at least this time I'll be attached to something.

7. Go to Portugal.

I mean I'm Portuguese so I have to go at some point, right?

8. Go to Cape Verde.

Once again, I'm Cape Verdean so I have to go.

9. Vist one of the seven wonders of the world.

I mean hey, Egypt's on, my bucket list.

10. Try out surfing.

It's only natural that somebody from the Ocean State knows how to surf.

11. Learn a new langauge.

Because my little bit of Portuguese, Spanish and Latin isn't cutting it anymore.

12. Travel to a state that I've never been to before.

Fun fact: I've only been to 17 of the 50 states.

13. Go paddle boarding.

Pretty boring but I've never done it.

14. Go scuba diving.

I'm from the Ocean State so I guess I should see the ocean up close and personal.

15. Learn how to line dance.

There's actually a barn in my state that does line dancing, so this one will definitely get crossed off.

16. Go kayaking.

All this water around me and I haven't done a lot of the water activites.

17. Stay the night in a haunted hotel room.

I bet if I got my friends to come with me, it would be like the Suite Life of Zach and Cody episode, minus the ghost coming out of the wall but you never know.

18. Get my palms read.

Because who doesn't want to know their future.

19. Go to a medium.

Like a medium that can communicate with people that have died.

20. Take a helicopter ride.

Air plane: check Helicopter:....

21. Sleep under the stars.

Because sleeping in a tent is more like glamping than camping

22. Just to try new things in my everyday life.

Whether it's trying a new restaurant, getting something different at my usual restaurants, changing my usual style, going on the scary rides at amusement parks, and bringing things I used to do back into my life now.

Cover Image Credit:

Author's illustration

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I Woke up In The Middle Of The Night To Write About My Fears, They're Worse Than The Dark

One minute I'm thinking about what I want to do after college next thing I know I'm remembering the time I tried talking to a boy and choked on my spit.


It is one of those nights when I am tired, but for some reason, I can't seem to fall asleep. So, what do I do? I pull out my laptop, and I begin to write. Who knows where it will lead. It could lead to a killer article or something that does not make sense. I mean it is almost 2 A.M. In my mind, that's pretty late.

Anyways, let's do this thing.

Like many people, thoughts seem to pile up in my head at this time. It could be anything from a time when I was younger to embarrassing stories to wondering why I am "wasting" my time somewhere to thoughts about the future. All of these things come at me like a wildfire. One minute I'm thinking about what I want to do after college next thing I know I'm remembering the time I tried talking to a boy and choked on my spit.

The thought that is going through my mind as I write this is about the future. It's about the future of my fears. Let me explain. I have multiple fears. Some of my fears I can hide pretty well, others I am terrible at hiding. My fears may seem silly to some. While others might have the same fears. Shall we start?

1. My career

I don't know where to begin with this one. For as long as I can remember, my consistent dream job has been working in the world of sports, specifically hockey. A career in sports can be and is a challenging thing. The public eye is on you constantly. A poor trade choice? Fans are angry. Your team sucks? "Fans" are threatening to cheer for someone else if you can't get your sh*t together. You can be blamed for anything and everything. Whether you are the coach, general manager, owner, it does not matter. That's terrifying to me, but for some reason, I want to work for a team.

2. My family

Julie Fox

Failing with my family, whether that be the family I was born into or my future family, it terrifies me. I have watched families around me fall apart and I have seen how it has affected them. Relationships have fallen apart because of it. I have heard people talk about how much they hate one of their parents because of what happened. I don't want that.

3. Time

This could be a dumb fear. I'm not sure, but I fear time. With every minute that passes, I am just another minute closer to the end. With every day that passes that I am not accomplishing goals or dreams I have, I am losing precious time. It scares me to think of something horrible like "What if I die tomorrow because of something horrific?" or even worse, "What if I don't make it through today?" It's terrible, I know.

4. Forgetting precious memories

When I was younger, I had brain surgery. It is now much harder for me to remember things. I am truly terrified that I am going to forget things I will want to hold close to me forever, but I won't be able to. I am scared I'll forget about the little things that mean a lot. I'm afraid of forgetting about old memories that may disappear. I'm worried that I'll forget about something like my wedding day. That might seem out of this world, but it's a reality for me.

5. Saying "goodbye"

I hate saying bye. It is one of my least favorite things. Saying bye, especially to people I don't know when I'll see again, is a stab in the heart for me. I love my people so much. I love being around them. I love laughing with them. Thought of never having a hello with them again scares me beyond belief.

6. Leaving places that I love

Alright, let me start off by saying this- it takes a lot for me to love a place. It has to feel like home. It has to make me feel comfortable. It has to be a place I can go to and be myself. Thankfully, I have had and still have multiple places that are like that. I have also had places I could not wait to leave. I think that's why leaving places I love is so hard and something I fear so much. I am afraid I'll never get that place "back", for lack of a better term. I guess, I'm trying to say, it's like a piece of me is leaving as well.

These six things are just the start of my fears. Some of these might seem "dumb" or "ridiculous" to you, but for me, it's my life. These are the things that I think about the most. These are the things that feel like a pit in my stomach. These six things are parts of my life that mean a lot to me.

Cover Image Credit:

Emily Heinrichs

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