Seek Experiences Outside Of The Lecture Hall Early
Start writing a post
Student Life

Seek Experiences Outside Of The Lecture Hall Early

The sooner the better.

Seek Experiences Outside Of The Lecture Hall Early

After being in college for three and a half years, the biggest piece of advice I have for undergraduates is to seek out experiences that occur outside of the lecture hall as soon as you possibly can.

Yes, college is overwhelming. Yes, there is a lot to keep up with when simply taking classes no matter whether you are enrolled as a part-time or full-time student. Each class itself requires a major commitment to successfully complete and integrate the material into your professional life. Yes, taking classes is the primary task that allows you to identify as a college student.

No, classes are not the only way for you to learn.

Do your best to find other sources to learn from. Whether these lessons exactly coincide with the lessons from your textbook or not, having the first-hand experience is the best way to truly learn. There are a variety of ways that you can implement all of the knowledge you gain in the lecture hall while also attaining new experiences through a different level of learning. Internships, shadowing professionals, study abroad, part-time jobs, research positions, student organizations, and self-study are just some of the ways that you can further enhance your knowledge and experience. Even if these opportunities are not completely in line with what your ultimate career goal is, each opportunity is still teaching you at least one useful thing.

There are just some lessons that cannot be taught in the lecture hall. Professors do an amazing job of relaying the information of their course to the students through a variety of intellectual discussions and activities. They also do a great job of telling personal stories about their most worthwhile life experiences in the field they specialize in. Have you ever noticed that professors do not tell their class about the big group project that changed their life? It's because they are telling the stories about their in-field research assistantships or the connection they made in working on-site at their internship that changed their life.

Personally, I underestimated the value of experiences that took place outside of the lecture hall until I was halfway through my second year of undergrad. In part, I think this was due to adjusting to college life in general. It is important to first become adjusted to college life, and the amount of time that it takes for this adjustment to start to settle will vary for every single person. On top of this, another key aspect is having a general idea of what your post-undergraduate goals are. If this plan entails applying to graduate school, securing a professional internship, or working full-time using your degree, it is necessary to identify some general idea so you are aware of what undergraduate experiences will help you achieve this goal.

Consequently, adjusting to college and also identifying post-undergraduate life goals are two very hefty tasks to tackle. Answers will not happen overnight. Just knowing that all college students have to go through these challenging times of figuring things out can help alleviate some of the stress of the situations. Part of this trial and error process is getting outside experiences because these experiences can assist in helping you understand both the world and yourself a little bit better.

So, go forth and seek out these experiences as soon as possible. Attending class is pretty simple and does yield imperative life lessons. Yet, the most worthwhile learning experiences occur when more effort is required.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments