What It's Like To Not Go To College

What It's Like Choosing Not To Attend College

Having no homework, student debt, exams, or lectures sounds good to me.


I graduated from South High School in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 2016. As a senior, I struggled with deciding if college was right for me after graduation. I wanted a future somewhere in the arts, mostly photography, and didn't really want to end up with a job through someone's company; I wanted to start my own business.

I yearned to apply to MCAD (Minneapolis College of Art and Design) but knew that it was quite expensive & unnecessary to the future I sought out for. Last minute, I ended up applying to the University of Minnesota, and while all of my friends received their acceptance letters, I was put on the wait-list. Looking back now, I'm glad I didn't get in, because I wouldn't be where I am today.

My family is one of the most supportive people out there. My parents never cared if I went to college or not, they just wanted me to do what made me happy. I still get asked by family members if I'm in school yet or when I will end up going. I follow it up with the usual, "No, not yet. Maybe in the next couple of years!" knowing well that I'm not going to change my mind. I did contemplate going to cosmetology school in 2017 because hair was (and is) something I'm passionate about, but I ended up not going through with it. Not being in college gave me a lot of time to think about what I was really interested in and all the possible career options.

In the fall of 2016, I got hired at Caribou Coffee. My wage started off really low but has now increased by $3. I worked Wednesdays-Saturdays giving me three days off in between to focus on other things besides work. Since my friends were off at college living in dorms, I ended up living at home for two years. I never wanted to be that kid that lived with their parents until I turned 20, but I'm really glad I did. It gave me time to save up some money and not stress out about rent. I'm still working at Caribou Coffee and decided to get a second job back in July at Trader Joes.

During my time working at Caribou, I worked as a photographer on the side. My parents bought me my first professional camera for a graduation present and I put a photography service post up on Facebook marketplace. I never thought that a service post on Facebook would bring me business, but it did. I did my first wedding and learned a lot from it. I had some drop out clients, which was also hard and taught me a lot about security deposits. Having my own thing I was accomplishing right out of high school without going to college made me feel good about myself.

A couple of months ago, I had decided to reach out to one of my favorite artists in Minneapolis, Ashley Mary, and asked her if I could take some pictures of her. She ended up saying yes and I got to do one of my favorite shoots I have ever done so far! When you are trying to do something all on your own, you have to find ways to get your name out there and network; having that shoot with her was a good way of doing so, which already has its benefits. I'm currently working on my photography website as well and plan on having it up by the spring to bring more clients.

For anyone who is considering not going to college at all or taking a year off, it's 100% okay to do. If you aren't sure of what you want to major in or what you want as a career, take a year off to think it over and save up some money. There are so many jobs out there that need to be done by people who don't have/need a college degree, even being a barista at a coffee shop. When it really comes down to it, everyone should find a job that makes them happy.

Several people ask me why I don't go to college and if I want to find a well-paid job. My answer to that question is that I don't need a lot of money. I'm already doing what makes me happy, so why would I do something that's unnecessary? Even though I don't attend college, I'm taking time to learn about photography on my own time. I'm definitely going to be taking some classes in 2019 just to be more solid in my computer knowledge when it comes to editing, but I don't need to get a major in photography to make my career what I want it to be.

Even though photography is my current passion, I'm fully aware that it could change at any moment, and life could hand me a different opportunity to do something else. I think it's exciting and a great way to live life especially if you are like me and have a million different interests. So when you are finding your path for your future, always be open to things you didn't expect, sometimes change is good.

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21 Things You Say To Your Roommate If You Two Are Practically A Married Couple

Until I made this list, I didn't realize how absurdly close my roommate and I were. #sorrynotsorry

Let's be real: you and your roommate have said these things at least one to each other.

1. "Can you turn the light off?"

2. "We probably shouldn't go out for dinner again...right?"

*Complains about not having money* *Spends $8 on Chipotle three times a week*

3. "I always pick where we go"

This is a fight you have with your roommate almost every day when you're roommate is as indecisive as mine.

4. "Do you have my keys?"

5. "Can you pick me up?"

6. "Is it hot in here?"

7. "Does this outfit look stupid?"

The answer is usually yes. No offense.

8. "Can you throw this out for me?"

9. "Can we get ice cream?"

10. "I need coffee."

This text is usually sent when you know your roomie is out running errands... errands you know are near a Starbucks.

11. "Can you tell me what happened?"

12. "Are you asleep?"

There have been times where I couldn't tell if you were asleep or dead... and I had to say this out loud to check if you were alive.

13. "Check your DM's."

*Cracks up in the middle of nowhere* *Catches a weird stare from your roomie across the room*

14. "Can you plug this in for me?"

15. "Can you pick a movie?"

Another instance where "I always pick" happens.

16. "Look at this girl's Instagram."

*Chucks phone across the room at roommate*

17. "Can you call me?"

18. "Can we meet up?"

19. "Can you help me find my phone?"

*Tries to leave the house to do something* *Loses phone* Every. Time.

20. "What should we do tonight?"

*Tries to get ready to do something fun* *Ends up staying in for another girls' night*

21. "Why isn't everyone as great as us?"


Cover Image Credit: Juliarose Genuardi

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10 Tips To Prepare For Your Freshman Year Of College

Tips and tricks for college freshman year.


Obviously, I am not an expert on college life yet, being that I am only a high school senior. Barely hanging on these last couple weeks of school. I have been preparing for my freshman year of college since the start of my senior year. It is an overwhelming, stressful process and it takes a lot of preparation and time to get it all done. I wanted to give some tips and advice on how I started my process and how I have gotten through it. Starting a new chapter can be really scary, especially if you have no idea what you are doing, I am the oldest sibling in my family, and I am the first to go through this crazy process called college. Though I was uncertain exactly what I needed to do and how to do it, I figured it out and here's how I did it.

1. Have a planner

This is going to be your best friend. It helps you keep your life organized (or at least it makes you feel like you do) and assures you that you meet deadlines. Since I can remember I have always used a planner and it helps me so much. I wouldn't know what to do without it. I have all the dates for when things need to be turned in- like housing and such, and also I have up to when classes start next fall. A planner is so helpful and would recommend getting one if you don't have one already.

2. Talk to friends about their experience

This has honestly been one of the top life savors. I have gotten so much advice from my friends that are in college and they give me the inside scoop and what to do and what not to do.

3. Do your research

Research the school, research clubs and activities that you may be interested in. Get familiar with what is on and off campus.

4. Visit the campus

Photo by Olivia Holler

I am lucky enough that I am only an hour and a half away from campus and it doesn't take long to get there so I just go when I feel like it. But visiting and being on campus several times defiantly has made me feel more comfortable and more at ease than I would be if I had not visited at all.

5. Embrace times with friends and family

Photo By Olivia Holler

This is the last summer with you In your house as a full time member. Embrace it! Be with your friends and family as much as you can. You are going to miss them just as much as you are going to miss them.

6. Start doing things on your own

I am already pretty independent but I struggled like starting to make my own dinners because I have been fortunate enough where my parent always took care of dinner. But now they are making me responsible for making my own dinner. Which was a really tough life altering thing for me. It may not seem like it but it was for me. But start doing your own laundry. making your own dinner, getting things yourself etc.

7. Make list

This and my planner have been my saving grace. If I didn't have it there was going to be no progress on the thing called college.

8. Manage your time

This is pretty self explanatory, there is a lot to do during the college process. Be sure not to procrastinate and know when things are due so you can get everything on time.

9. Take summer classes if needed

If you know you are going to be behind in a class, take some summer classes. For example, I am a little behind in math, and I have to take all the way up to college algebra in order to graduate college. Well, I knew I didn't want to take math all four years of college and I knew I was behind. So I am taking some summer courses to not only finish with math earlier but just to be ahead of the game.

10.  Gather everything you need for college!

Make sure you have everything you need for the big day. Set apart some days before move in day to take time and pack whatever you may need so you don't forget anything.

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