The Real College Experience As Told By Me

The Real College Experience As Told By Me

The best parts about college.
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T'is the season for touring schools. Every year, around this time, it seems there is a mass migration of all prospective students and their families to campuses worldwide as if they are all some sort of prehistoric species looking for a warmer climate. However, rain or shine they make their way from campus to campus on the hunt for the perfect fit. It seems like just yesterday my family and I were partaking in this journey. It is a scary place out there on the "wild" unknown college campuses. I remember from my touring days, I was so overwhelmed by the vast amounts of people- all types- and they towered above me in a way that made them seem more like giants and less like college students. To say the least, it was overwhelming, but when you find that perfect school and everything clicks- it makes the journey worth it.

I remember the first time I entered UMW's campus: it was like someone came and knocked the wind right out of my chest- and oddly I didn't mind at all. It was like that feeling people often describe when you find the perfect wedding dress- that serendipitous "you just know" feeling. The beautiful campus, the small class sizes everything just clicked. Finding the perfect school can be hard, but I hope this article reaches some nervous high school Junior out there, who doesn't know where to start on their search for a home away from home. Take the leap, tour Mary Washington, become an Eagle, and learn how to fly.

Dear UMW,

Thank you...

1. Thank You for Taking Me Out of My Comfort Zone

I was an insecure, sheltered, small town girl when we first met. I left my mountains for you, in search of myself. It was between your old brick buildings and cast iron gate that I found opportunity, and with this opportunity, I work (to this day) on perfecting who I knew I was. It was hard trusting you. You were nothing like I had known before- fast cars, big roads and people using slang like "a brick" or "what a sice." It was not always easy either, there were times I wanted nothing more but to return to my mountains, but looking back now I'm sure glad I didn't.

2. Thank You for Introducing Me to the Love of a Life Time

I sure have met a number of amazing people since I stepped foot on this magical campus, but never in my life have I met someone like him. College is supposed to be a time to figure out who you are, but it seems he came here already knowing. Not only does he seem to know just who he is, but those times where I felt most overwhelmed- he helped me remember who I was. He is my best friend and perfect compliment; tackling college may be our first adventure, but, with a partner like him, I know there will be many more to come.

3. Thank You for Giving Me the Perfect Roommate

It may have taken a year to meet her, but she was 100% worth the wait. She is one of those people you meet, and can't help but love. It's like we were cut from the same cloth, her and I. Whether it is binge watching Pokemon on a Saturday night, or making Mc. Donald's runs- in just one year we have made some of the most memorable moments of my time here at UMW. She is the Bonnie to my Clyde, the Pikachu to my Ash and someday a future bridesmaid. She is my adopted sister in my home away from home and I couldn't be more thankful to have her.

4. Thank You for My Second Family

A second home isn't home without a family, and I am lucky enough to call these crazy people OHANA. We are all different, but somehow it just works. I feel extremely blessed to have them as my support system, and I know they will always be there. Whether we are cramming for finals or having a League of Legends marathon, I know I can count on them to be there- with their sassy comebacks too.

5. Finally, Thank You for Your Many Lessons

In and out of the classroom, UMW, you are constantly teaching me things. I came to you a shy, sheltered small town girl but every day, through the many blessings you brought me, I emerge a better version of myself- and that is why UMW is the best choice I ever made.

Love,

A Verry Happy and Blessed Eagle

Cover Image Credit: Libby Patterson

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You May Have Worn The Prom Dress With Him, But I Get To Wear The Wedding Dress

You had him in high school, but I get him for the rest of my life.
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High school seems like the best time of your life when you are in it. You think that all of your friends will be with you until the end, and that you will end up with whoever you are dating your senior year. For very few, that might just be the case. For all others, that is far from true.

You thought that you would marry your boyfriend and you thought that everything would work out how you had always imagined. I don't blame you though. He's great. You wanted everything with him, but you were just not right for him.

I wish I could say that I am sorry it didn't work out for you, but I can't. I can't because he is mine now, and I get to cherish him forever. You didn't do that right, and you were not meant to be together. You will find someone too, but I am happy that you were not the one for him.

Sometimes I have issues with jealousy, and I hate that you got all of the high school stuff with him. You got to go to games and support him. It kills me that I couldn't be there for him because I know I would have actually been there wholeheartedly. I would have done it out of love, not as a popularity appearance.

I hate that you got to go to all of the school dances with him. He got to see you all dressed up and probably told you how great you looked. I'm sure you did look great. Prom dresses were always fun to pick out and so colorful. It was exciting to match colors with your date. I am sure you had fun choosing his matching tux to your dress.

I find myself getting jealous, but then I stop. I am getting to match his tux with our wedding colors. I got to go dress shopping in a sea of white, and he doesn't get to know one detail about that dress yet. He will get to see me walk down the aisle and then every day forever. I get to love him forever.

I try to not get jealous of all of the things you got with him because it is all in the past. You had your time, and now I get the wedding. You got to dress up in high school, but I get to dress up for my wedding with him. He may have put a corsage on your wrist, but he will be putting the wedding ring on my finger.

Cover Image Credit: Jessy Scott

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5 Things I Don't Know How To Do But Should've Learned Years Ago, As Told By The Kardashians

In my opinion, there should be college classes completely based on mastering these topics.

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There are many things that I don't know how to do yet. These, however, are things that I am now realizing are things I maybe should have learned a long time ago. Things that if I knew anything about them, it would improve my life exponentially. Hopefully some of you feel the same and we can learn together.

1. How to cook chicken

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Seems easy, but this is deceivingly difficult. No one tells you what type of chicken to get, and there are so many options. Like, do you get chicken breast or chicken cutlet or chicken tenders? Which way is the best way to cook it? Pan fry, bake, deep fry, poach, steam, etc! And how do you make it not taste like paper? What, like, spices do you put on it? In my last year of college I have made it my duty to learn how to make every type of chicken.

2. How to work a dishwasher

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So, I know how to put the plates and silverware in, obviously. And I always clean them off before because I never trust the dishwasher soap to get everything off. How would it? And where exactly does the little dishwasher soap go? No one tells you where the leetle hole is that the soap bar goes. There's like three different holes in the door thing, and how are you supposed to know which one the soap goes in? Just guess and hope for the best? That's what I do.

3. How to pay your taxes??? Literally how

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No matter who I ask, young or old, no one understands anything about taxes. I have been working since I was 17 and year after year when I ask my parents for help filing my taxes, they agree begrudgingly while squinting at the paper pointing at the little boxes with a "I think it's that one." I have never and will never understand anything to do with taxes, period. I will leave this to the professionals.

4. How to do anything with insurance, ever

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Once again, wtf? Do the companies make these things impossible to understand on purpose? Like, all I want is to get my birth control from CVS and be done. Is that so hard? Why do I have to switch it to Walgreens (to whom I am NOT brand loyal, to, by the way) and then check if they cover my insurance? And WTF is a copay? And there's something that you pay before you get a copay? All I'm gonna say is that my mom tried to explain it to me once and it went in one ear and out the other.

5. How to arrange a cheese board

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This is something that I feel shows you have truly made it at an adult. You have people over to your house and just throw together a lovely charcuterie board for your guests like its nothing. But what do you buy for it? Cheese, obviously. Meats? What types of cheese and meat? Grapes? Nuts? And how do you arrange it to look all pretty? Mark my words: when I can make a yummy and visually appealing cheese board, I've made it.

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