Halfway Through College Reflection

I Am Halfway Through College And I Do NOT Know How To Feel About It

Time really does fly, and you never know how much it actually does until it's behind you.

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I know that two years can go by in a snap of Thanos' fingers, but I think I won't able to fully comprehend that I'm halfway through my college journey anytime soon. A LOT has happened to me (mentally, emotionally, even in the physical world around me) in twenty-four months, as it would for any human being, but I believe it's in these years where everything just seems much more pivotal because I am becoming an actual young adult. Other college soon-to-be juniors can relate to me with this because although we are probably super happy to have half of college under our belts already, it's also flipping scary because we still don't know what we're doing with our lives yet.

As with any end to a semester or school year, it's a time of reflection (something that I've become way too accustomed in doing during college), and so I'll be doing just that in this article. Sometimes we forget just how much we've grown and how much we've accomplished in a short amount of time that a little reflection is necessary to gain that sense of self-pride and motivation, which may be vital for me after all to kick off this summer.

When I started college, I didn't feel as though anything in my life would change: I was going to commute so I'd still be living at home and most of my friends from high school were going to be commuting as well so I thought that things would ultimately stay the same besides the fact we'd all be going to different schools. That post-high school graduation sadness didn't hit me until the start of my first semester, after all and I found myself getting lost in the world of college. I also abandoned the idea of keeping music in my studies, so that left me a little crazy, too. My first semester was tough- academically and mentally- but it was being able to push through all of that that allowed me to create a better school atmosphere for myself come next semester.

My second semester proved to be far more enjoyable with deciding to declare a musical theater minor as well as join the MSU Chorale. I also found myself going into the city more than ever before and figuring out the public transportation system with my friends from home, making awesome memories in the meantime. I also went through a bit of a freakout where I thought of switching my major, but it only made me realize just how much I loved what I was studying already.

I ended my freshman year feeling really good about everything, and that set the tone for my first four-month college summer. I wound up working two jobs and taking an online class for the beginning of summer, went to Universal Studios Orlando and even fell in love for the first time in my life. It was truly a summer I'll never forget, and I am secretly afraid I won't be able to live up to it for this one.

Sophomore year started out with the remnants of my summer-love happiness but it would soon turn into the toughest semester, academically and emotionally, yet. While I finally joined the theater club on campus and got involved in my first show since high school and made awesome friends there, I went through my first heartache right after. Insert some more hardships and finding out I was failing one of my classes, and I found myself hitting a real all-time-low by crying in front of the professor for that class. I felt the kind of horrible and dark feelings you hear about in songs and books, and I didn't know what to do to come out of it. Luckily, I have a great support system and the will to work hard when I'm stressed, so I decided to go to tutoring for the first time in my academic career and felt whatever I had to feel to move on. And so I did, and life got better from there.

At the end of the semester I decided to audition for a theater department show for the first time. I wound up getting a callback, that I would ultimately not get in the end, but it led me to getting a random email one day about an internship for the Office of Annual Giving and Alumni Engagement. I decided to just go for it and went to an interview after New Years'. Not even two hours later I found out I got the position, and it made me more excited than ever for school.

This past semester proved to be the most fun, and that's because of the classes I took that were mostly for my major. I learned that I thoroughly enjoy Public Relations and that I would be a great on-air talent for television (for my television production class). I met five amazingly sweet and hard-working girls in my internship, two of which I see myself staying friends with for the long haul. One of them has even made a deal with me to study abroad next summer, and so we plan to stay in touch in our Geology class come Fall. Although the semester ended on a weary note with a situation I had to deal with, I felt so good that summer was just around the corner to forget about everything school related and to just enjoy relaxation.

And here I am, the day after my last final and the first day of summer, writing about my entire college journey thus far. I would be lying if I said I wasn't proud of everything I've achieved in the last two years, and even though it isn't groundbreaking stuff, it seems like it in my world. I made the Dean's List for the hardest semester I've had, I've taken on an Eboard position for the NSLS chapter of my school and I already have my first internship experience under my belt. Music is a constant presence in my life with my minor, MSU Players and in my vocal lessons once a month (I'm even planning to buy a ukelele as an end-of-school present for myself). Add in all the clubs I'm a part of, continuing my blog here on Odyssey and all of the friendships I've made thus far, and I'd say these past two years have given me an abundance of blessings.

I have to admit that I may not be the biggest voucher of "Oh my gosh, college is the best thing ever," but I've learned that that's just me. I may have not gone to a proper college party yet or joined a sorority, but I've accepted that I'm making my experience everything I want it to be for me.

I may still be a little insecure with how I'm perceived by my friends at home and at school, but in reality, who isn't? I know for a fact, though, that I am not the exact same girl I started out college as, and I am completely proud of that. Growth is the most vital aspect of life, especially at this point in mine, and I am experiencing it everyday by being in college. I'm learning to accept myself for who I am, learning to to find where my passions lie and seeking my place in this huge world (and maybe even at school still).

So if the second half of college is anything like the first, I know that it's going to be a roller coaster ride. But what other way would I want it go?

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Do We Really Need All Of These TV Show Reboots?

2019 is the year of TV series reboots.

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With the premiere of "Toy Story 4" approaching very soon, I've been thinking about all of these revivals that have been created in the past few years, specifically on television and streaming services.

There has been a trend to take an older TV show that gained much success "back in the day," and either reboot it or develop an entirely new concept, based on the name of the show. While it seemingly sounds like a great idea because of how many accolades it got in the past (and probably will with a revival), the phrase that comes to mind is: "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." Why ruin a classic TV series with a reboot that will probably leave us very unfulfilled?

Many things in life are done under the influence of money; TV shows and movie sequels are no different. Producers know that if they create another run of "Full House" (even 24 years later), it will do very well; we just can't get enough of the Tanner's. I loved the show as much as the next person, but I feel that the reboot ("Fuller House") falls short because of several factors. Some of these include but are not limited to, the aging cast, and many of the cast members not appearing on the show (or potentially headed for jail). Expectations for these reboots are so high, it makes it nearly impossible to come close to the original series. Streaming services have nothing to lose, since they are more subscription-based, rather than ratings-based.

There are some exceptions to my argument, especially when shows don't exactly have an ending. There was a lot of talk surrounding the cancellation of "Gilmore Girls" because the writer had three words that she wanted to use in the series finale; they never made it onto that final broadcast. That is until the four-part series on Netflix came out a few years ago. We then learned those last three words Amy Sherman-Palladino had saved for us (I won't spoil it for you). In my opinion, "Gilmore Girls" did deserve the sequel, but it still did not give me psychological closure.

With the increased amount of reboots these days, it leaves me wondering if the show creators are even thinking outside the box, since rebooting a series can be "viewed" (no pun intended) as taking the easy way out. Instead of trying to create new content that someday could be considered classics, they are taking old classics and revamping them. While it may seem like a no-lose situation, the bar has already been set so high that it's almost impossible to surpass. On the other hand, some audiences are not as harsh as me and are willing to take what they can get.

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Hey You, Get Off Your Phone!

A phone addiction: the one thing we all have in common.

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Your best friend is telling you about her relationship issues when you get a text from another friend. You nod along as she speaks and go to reach for your phone, responding to the text.

You're at work when you hear your phone buzz- it's Urban Outfitters and they're telling you about a sale: 25% all graphics tees! You know it'll look bad to be on your phone but you've got to hop on the good deal before it's gone.

You've got a million things to do- finish a 12 page report by Thursday, clean the dishes, respond to a 100 emails- but you also have snapchats to open, an Instagram to scroll through, and tweets to retweet. A little procrastination never hurt.

We're all guilty of doing it. We've become so normalized to a life with a phone in our hand 24/7, that not being on it sends us into a spiral. It's an addiction and a habit that's incredibly hard to break, but it's the reason that our friends feel ignored, our bosses think we're distracted, and our everyday tasks gets pushed to the last minute.

Force yourself to find another outlet when you're bored.

I recently decided to delete the apps I know are a biggest waste of my time, and find other distractions instead- distractions that involve the people and things that are right in front of me.

Read a book, go for a walk, talk to your friends and parents, paint, draw, go for a run.

Give the respect that people deserve.

Your friends aren't going to stay your friends for too long if you're half listening when they're speaking to you. If you want people to give a shit about your problems, you might want to put in a little effort on your end.

Not to mention, staring at your phone all day is definitely killing your brain cells.

Studies have proven that cellphone usage leads to a shorter attention span. It's the reason we cannot read for more than a couple minutes without getting distracted and why we can't remember things as well as we used to before the era of smart phones.

Habits are hard to break- it takes about 21 days to form one but even longer to get out of one. Take little steps in achieving a life without your hands plastered to your phone and remember that reality is so much better than the digitalized version we see on our 5 by 7 screens.

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