Why It's OK For College To Be More Than A Four-Year Term

Why It's OK For College To Be More Than A Four-Year Term

Despite what you think, college doesn't have to be a four year thing.
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College was sort of a wake-up call when it came to academics.

I never struggled with school. I could walk into a test without even studying and still do well. I became so accustomed to the 80's and 90's stamped across every graded assignment I got back.

Then, everything changed when I got to UMass Dartmouth.

My first semester went great. I was on Dean's list and still did fairly well. I noticed pretty quickly that my not so study habits wouldn't fly, so I had to buckle down.

Things did not go as well for me anytime after that.

My second semester was a lot of struggling. I had five classes that ran Monday Wednesday Friday, one after the other. "It'll be no big deal", I thought to myself, "I went to high school from 7:30-2 every day and never had any problems". Slowly, the 8 am class dragging on to the final release at 3 o'clock got to me. I ended up doing alright, but not as well as I had hoped.

This past semester was when disaster struck. I finally realized that I couldn't bury my personal problems any longer and I had to make a decision on what I needed to treat. I tried to balance my self-help, trips to the counseling center, and time hitting the books all at once. My inner demons got the best of me and completely consumed my will and energy, and because of it, I only passed one of my classes.

That's right. You read it correctly. One.

I beat myself up about it for weeks. I have never felt like such a failure in my entire life. The thought of not finishing school in four years seemed like the end of the world.

Then, my dad said something to me.

"It doesn't matter how long it takes you, as long as you finish. Who said you had to finish school in four years?"

And he's right.

You've heard from such a young age that "college are the best four years of your life" and "not four years but for life", but how many of us actually finish in that amount of time? And so what if it takes us longer?

Only 46% of people graduate from UMass Dartmouth within the first six years.

So, what if it takes me five? Even six?

There are so many things you can do with your extra time at school.

Join a club, start a club, take on a minor, travel, study abroad, explore yourself and your mind. Cherish the time and the people you spend it with.

To quote that cheesy phrase we've all seen on Tumblr, "It does not matter how slow you go, as long as you do not stop". As cliche as it is, it's true.

The amount of time it takes for me to finish does not determine my worth.

I will get there. I can do it.



Cover Image Credit: darrylepollack.com

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I'm A Woman And You Can't Convince Me Breastfeeding In Public Is OK In 2019

Sorry, not sorry.

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Lately, I have seen so many people going off on social media about how people shouldn't be upset with mothers breastfeeding in public. You know what? I disagree.

There's a huge difference between being modest while breastfeeding and just being straight up careless, trashy and disrespectful to those around you. Why don't you try popping out a boob without a baby attached to it and see how long it takes for you to get arrested for public indecency? Strange how that works, right?

So many people talking about it bring up the point of how we shouldn't "sexualize" breastfeeding and seeing a woman's breasts while doing so. Actually, all of these people are missing the point. It's not sexual, it's just purely immodest and disrespectful.

If you see a girl in a shirt cut too low, you call her a slut. If you see a celebrity post a nude photo, you call them immodest and a terrible role model. What makes you think that pulling out a breast in the middle of public is different, regardless of what you're doing with it?

If I'm eating in a restaurant, I would be disgusted if the person at the table next to me had their bare feet out while they were eating. It's just not appropriate. Neither is pulling out your breast for the entire general public to see.

Nobody asked you to put a blanket over your kid's head to feed them. Nobody asked you to go feed them in a dirty bathroom. But you don't need to basically be topless to feed your kid. Growing up, I watched my mom feed my younger siblings in public. She never shied away from it, but the way she did it was always tasteful and never drew attention. She would cover herself up while doing it. She would make sure that nothing inappropriate could be seen. She was lowkey about it.

Mindblowing, right? Wait, you can actually breastfeed in public and not have to show everyone what you're doing? What a revolutionary idea!

There is nothing wrong with feeding your baby. It's something you need to do, it's a part of life. But there is definitely something wrong with thinking it's fine to expose yourself to the entire world while doing it. Nobody wants to see it. Nobody cares if you're feeding your kid. Nobody cares if you're trying to make some sort of weird "feminist" statement by showing them your boobs.

Cover up. Be modest. Be mindful. Be respectful. Don't want to see my boobs? Good, I don't want to see yours either. Hard to believe, I know.

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22 Things Parents Should Send Their Children At College, If They Love And Miss Them

We're getting to that point in the semester, y'all.

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Even though college students are just a little over a month into the spring semester, we are already feeling high amounts of stress over tests and papers. Nobody said college was going to be easy, and this statement is ringing truer and truer each day. So, to the parents, grandparents, or anybody else who loves us and cares about our well being, here are 22 things you should send us if you love and miss our presence.

1. Gift cards to the local grocery store. 

Preferably Walmart or Food Lion, since that's all we have here in Farmville, VA.

2. Room decor from the Target dollar section. 

Or anything from Target, for that matter. Some college towns don't have one of these glorious establishments, and we are experiencing withdrawals.

3. School supplies. 

You can never have too many sticky notes or colored pens.

4. Mints. 

Because some people need it after lunch, and gum is disgusting.

5. A cozy blanket. 

For those cold nights spent in the library until 2 in the morning.

6. A handwritten letter. 

These are one of my favorite things to get in the mail, and there is always something so sentimental about snail mail.

7. A giant box of fruit snacks...

Definitely one of my favorite grab and go snacks.

8. ... Or candy, in general. 

Preferably, gummies. But, I won't refuse chocolate candy either.

9. Cash. 

For those late night Taco Bell runs, or just to make us feel a little bit better about ourselves.

10.  A funny movie/DVD. 

There's something so simple and serene about watching a funny movie on a DVD player that brings us back to the less stressful times of our childhood.

11.  Hot chocolate mix. 

I always get random cravings for hot chocolate, but it's never enough to make me want to go buy a box of mix.

12.  Starbucks/Dunkin Donuts gift cards. 

Because the majority of our lives revolve around coffee, and sometimes our Keurigs just don't cut it.

13.  Peanut butter crackers. 

These are so quick and easy to eat between classes (or if you're like me, IN class).

14.  Scent diffuser. 

This can be even better if you send a scent that reminds us of home.

15.  Hair ties. 

For some reason, I only own about five at a time because I am always losing these!

16.  Homemade cookies/brownies. 

These always make me so happy knowing my mom took time out of her busy day to think of me and bake yummy treats.

17.  Gift cards for our favorite online shopping stores. 

What better way to relieve stress than buy clothes you don't need?

18.  Nail polish. 

You can never have too many bottles of the same shade of pink.

19.  Mug warmer. 

These help keep your cup of coffee warm for long periods of time so you don't end up wasting such a sacred drink.

20.  Lysol wipes/hand sanitizer. 

I go both of these things at an alarming rate because some places are just plain disgusting.

21.  Band-aids. 

No one ever really thinks of buying these, but they work for so many more reasons than their typical use.

22.  iTunes gift card. 

For all those "educational apps" our professors tell us to buy. *wink wink*

Every college student loves getting a care package in the mail, so if you really love and miss us, please send one our way!

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