The Pros And Cons Of College: Year Two
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Student Life

The Pros And Cons Of College: Year Two

What to expect when you're returning to school.

The Pros And Cons Of College: Year Two

This past week, I moved into Elizabethtown College for the second year in a row. As a sophomore helping with freshman move-in, I began to experience a bittersweet case of deja-vu. Every time I saw two new roommates introduce themselves, watch students examine the communal showers for the first time or glimpse the tearful hugs between first-years and their family members, I couldn't help but think, I remember that.

Last year, I was a freshman experiencing everything for the first time. This year I'm already familiar with my surroundings. Like every new checkpoint in life, College: Year Two comes with both pros and cons. Do any other sophomores recognize these?

Pro: You Know the Ins and Outs of the Dining Hall

You know the prime dining times to go to beat the rush. You know that weekends are reserved for leftovers, so a made-to-order item is your best bet. You even know what the special meals will be, and anticipate the Thanksgiving feast for months in advance. No longer do you burn your waffles or forget to pick up your pasta bowl; you're a dining hall expert! You know what to eat and what to avoid at all costs. As a second year student, eating in the dining hall is almost as familiar as eating in your own home.

Con: You've Already Tried Everything in the Dining Hall

The novelty of trying every single thing the dining hall has to offer has worn off. Last year you went through the meal cycle, so there probably won't be too many surprises this year. The quality of the food at my college is good, so I don't mind eating the same good food each week. But you miss the anticipation of the next schedule and sampling everything in the dessert case for the first time.

Pro: You Already Have Your "People"

You don't have to play ice breakers to learn who you click with this year. You've already spent a year with your friends, and you feel comfortable each time you have to go to dinner or an activity. Of course, you'll probably make new friends, which is very exciting! But hopefully you've already gotten to know some of the people in your class and don't feel quite as nervous about that element of college as you did last year.

Con: Your Senior Friends Are Gone

All of the seniors who helped you out in class, mentored or presided over your clubs and activities, and shared the wisdom they gained because of their three extra plus years of age...all of them are gone. At least, if you go to a college like Etown where there are few Masters programs. Of course there's a new class coming in with amazing new people, but it just doesn't feel the same without the class of 2016.

Pro: You Know What to Expect in Class

You've already been to college classes and (hopefully) learned how to manage your time. You know what works for you and what doesn't, in terms of course overload and extracurriculars. Hopefully you don't feel as daunted by the professors, since you've met many of them in your department by now. You've made it through one year; surely you can do it again.

Con: You're Busier Than Ever

You're in your second year, which means that the difficulty level of your classes increases. You'll be getting more papers, tests and long-term assignments. Additionally, you might be taking on a leadership role in any club or organization you're involved in. All of this work means that you'll spend a lot of time in the library or at your desk, and perhaps not as much time exploring campus or watching Netflix as you did when you were "easing into" freshman year.

Pro: You've Completed 1/4 of College!

You're a quarter of the way from getting your degree! You should be proud of what you've accomplished this far and excited about what the future has to hold.

Con: You've Completed 1/4 of College...

...and it's just starting to hit you: you only have three years left! Even though you're a sophomore, you may not have figured out what you want to do with the rest of your life. That lack of certainty may seem scary, especially now that the classes have an increased focus on your area of study. You feel more pressure to figure out your ambition...quickly!

Pro: Your Second Year Will Be Even Better than the First

You're looking forward to meeting new friends, learning new things and enjoying all that college has to offer. Now that you have your footing, you can branch out and explore the many opportunities around you. College doesn't seem so scary this time fact, you're even looking forward to it!

Enjoy your second year, sophomores! Best of luck to all college students as you return to campus!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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