To All the Colleges I Didn't Attend

To All the Colleges I Didn't Attend

...and to all the what ifs.

Sometimes when scrolling through my social media feeds, I start to wonder what it would have been like if my life was different. If I had picked a different college or university to attend, or a different major to complete …or a completely different life. Well, the truth is, St.John’s was not actually my top choice. It wasn’t that I had my heart set on any particular school I applied to, but if I had to rank the schools I applied to even at the beginning of my senior year, St. John’s was not even in my top 5.

You see, I had visited so many beautiful campuses, from the hilly elitist campus of Lehigh to the fast-paced Fordham Manhattan campus. However, I was not quite sold on going away to college or being 6 feet under in debt for a 4-year degree when I had plans of possibly attending law school in the future. But as my first full year of college comes to an end, I wanted to reflect back on the decision I made over a year ago to attend St. John’s and what I may or may not regret about not attending another school.

To all the schools I didn't attend,

You all had unique programs and aspects of your campuses to offer me.

You also all had much bigger campuses than the campus I spend most my time on now...and now I cannot imagine being in a class with more than 50 kids.

I am still proud of being accepted to each of your classes of '21 and I am grateful for the scholarship money some of you offered me.

I still sometimes wonder what it would be like to be part of such great art and music programs since my campus doesn't have a very established one at the moment.

It may have been easier to walk straight out of a dorm to class instead of commute an hour and half to my campus each day,but on the bright side I learned what time management was fairly quickly.

I wonder what life would have been like as Criminal Justice major/Journalism Major/ or even Prelaw major as opposed to a History Major.

I also wonder how many other students wonder all of these exact same things.


A Former Applicant to your School

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10 Things Someone Who Grew Up In A Private School Knows

The 10 things that every private school-goer knows all too well.


1. Uniforms

Plaid. The one thing that every private school-goer knows all too well. It was made into jumpers, skirts, shorts, scouts, hair ties, basically anything you could imagine, the school plaid was made into. You had many different options on what to wear on a normal day, but you always dreaded dress uniform day because of skirts and ballet flats. But it made waking up late for school a whole lot easier.

2. New people were a big deal

New people weren't a big thing. Maybe one or two a year to a grade, but after freshman year no one new really showed up, making the new kid a big deal.

3. You've been to school with most of your class since Kindergarten

Most of your graduating class has been together since Kindergarten, maybe even preschool, if your school has it. They've become part of your family, and you can honestly say you've grown up with your best friends.

4. You've had the same teachers over and over

Having the same teacher two or three years in a row isn't a real surprise. They know what you are capable of and push you to do your best.

5. Everyone knows everybody. Especially everyone's business.

Your graduating class doesn't exceed 150. You know everyone in your grade and most likely everyone in the high school. Because of this, gossip spreads like wildfire. So everyone knows what's going on 10 minutes after it happens.

6. Your hair color was a big deal

If it's not a natural hair color, then forget about it. No dyeing your hair hot pink or blue or you could expect a phone call to your parents saying you have to get rid of it ASAP.

7. Your school isn't like "Gossip Girl"

There is no eating off campus for lunch or casually using your cell phone in class. Teachers are more strict and you can't skip class or just walk right off of campus.

8. Sports are a big deal

Your school is the best of the best at most sports. The teams normally go to the state championships. The rest of the school that doesn't play sports attends the games to cheer on the teams.

9. Boys had to be clean-shaven, and hair had to be cut

If you came to school and your hair was not cut or your beard was not shaved, you were written up and made to go in the bathroom and shave or have the head of discipline cut your hair. Basically, if you know you're getting written up for hair, it's best just to check out and go get a hair cut.

10. Free dress days were like a fashion show

Wearing a school uniform every day can really drive you mad. That free dress day once a month is what you lived for. It was basically a fashion show for everyone, except for those upperclassmen who were over everything and just wore sweat pants.

Cover Image Credit: Authors Photos

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I Never Wanted To Go To College

I never wanted to go to college, but I stayed because I learned some things along the way - who knew.


I went because it's what the family expected from me. It's a step towards a successful career path. And obviously because it's a natural progression from high school. But deep down I never wanted to go because I really found no reason to be there.

In my view if you weren't going into traditional career fields, going to college was an expensive long shot. I was also careful to pay attention to all the people that attended college only to work in fields different from what they originally studied.

I was wary but didn't care so I don't put much thought into it. I applied to a handful of schools and attended the one that was more convenient. Once there I found the whole process disheartening.

I relied heavily on financial aid and felt the interaction and choices I was making were more transactional then enriching. It was just like high school again. Go to class take notes, read the book take the test, rinse and repeat until you get the degree.

That was until I fell into a philosophy class that was really challenging. It was challenging in a way that I hadn't been experienced in a while. I was having trouble understanding the material but desperately wanted to learn it. I read books over and over until the concepts were crystal clear. It also helped that I had a teacher who was passionate about the subject as well.

It kind of changed my whole approach to picking classes. Sure I'd visit the advisors and get their take on how to follow the quickest path to graduation. But I also wanted to be intentional with my course selection and take classes where I would learn as much as I could in topics that interested me.

Whether or not they fit my major. That's the only thing that made going to school worth it. Learning topics that change how I approach life and challenged my thinking. Then I was growing intellectually and not just checking boxes for a degree.

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