Towson, Thanks For Making Me Better

Towson, Thanks For Making Me Better

My first year shaped me into the person I am today.

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It's almost impossible to really take in my first year at college and digest it. So much happened so fast that it's kind of difficult to comprehend it. I met so many people, I experienced so many new things, I grew so much. It was scary and endlessly exciting at the same time. However, I would consider my first year at Towson University to be a success.

Let's set the record straight, though, living on your own for the first time is terrifying. No matter if your eighteen or eighty-eight, having to take care of yourself independently is a gigantic adjustment. You go from constantly having people around you to support and listen, to being well...alone. Thankfully, my freshman year I had a good roommate and my family was just a phone call away.

Once I was relieved of this anxiety, sometime during my first semester, I began to thrive. Suddenly, college was a world of opportunity where I could call all my own shots. It was like my entire life I had been riding in a convertible and could for the first time ride with the top down. Every day was a new adventure filled with new experiences, and more importantly, new people.

While I can't say that everyone I met was great, there was a boy who bullied me and another who had no regard for human decency, I can say that, overall, I met some real gems. I met people that were so different than the ones at home but were still kind and friendly just the same. Through my film society, Lambda Kappa Tau, and my sorority, Alpha Epsilon Phi, I have made connections that will last a lifetime.

So, while there were definitely some bumps in the road my first year of college, I wouldn't have it any other way. For it was from these obstacles, like being homesick and bullied that I grew and adapted. I had experiences and met people that completely transformed me. It is my first year of college that has shaped me into the confident, fearless, unapologetic young woman that I am today.

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8 Things You Should Never Say To An Education Major

"Is your homework just a bunch of coloring?"
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Yes, I'm an Education major, and yes, I love it. Your opinion of the field won't change my mind about my future. If you ever happen to come across an Education major, make sure you steer clear of saying these things, or they might hold you in from recess.

1. "Is your homework just a bunch of coloring?"

Um, no, it's not. We write countless lesson plans and units, match standards and objectives, organize activities, differentiate for our students, study educational theories and principles, and write an insane amount of papers on top of all of that. Sometimes we do get to color though and I won't complain about that.

2. "Your major is so easy."

See above. Also, does anyone else pay tuition to have a full-time job during their last semester of college?

3. "It's not fair that you get summers off."

Are you jealous? Honestly though, we won't really get summers off. We'll probably have to find a second job during the summer, we'll need to keep planning, prepping our classroom, and organizing to get ready for the new school year.

4. “That's a good starter job."

Are you serious..? I'm not in this temporarily. This is my career choice and I intend to stick with it and make a difference.

5. “That must be a lot of fun."

Yes, it definitely is fun, but it's also a lot of hard work. We don't play games all day.

6. “Those who can't, teach."

Just ugh. Where would you be without your teachers who taught you everything you know?

7. “So, you're basically a babysitter."

I don't just monitor students, I teach them.

8. “You won't make a lot of money."

Ah yes, I'm well aware, thanks for reminding me. Teachers don't teach because of the salary, they teach because they enjoy working with students and making a positive impact in their lives.

Cover Image Credit: BinsAndLabels

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3 Struggles Of Attending A Pre-Med Dominated University — No Matter What Your Major Is

It's a hard knock life for the many pre-med students out there.

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Even though we as college students are technically considered adults, we are still burdened by stress at a young age. Especially in a pre-med oriented school, we feel pressured to keep up with or even surpass the achievements of others as we struggle to maintain our busy schedules while attempting to balance what little time we have left for ourselves. It's a sad reality.

1. The competition

Coming from a very pre-med oriented university, I can't help but feel the competitive vibes around me. During the lecture, I can hear the students around me ask their peers what score they received on the most recent midterm while others boast about how busy they are during the week because of all of the things that they are doing outside of the classroom.

It's this dog eat dog environment and constant comparison that makes students and myself included feel as if we are somehow lagging behind or not doing as much as we should be doing so we push ourselves even harder to keep up. As much as we don't want to, we have the tendency to measure our success in terms of others' success, and this, in turn, makes it more difficult for us to focus on ourselves. Now, I'm sure that you've been told not to compare yourself to others, but in the end, isn't that how you gain admission into medical school? By being compared to others? It's all relative.

2. The authenticity

It's not rare to see a pre-med student taking 18 or more credits while trying to squeeze in some volunteer work, a campus job, and even some research hours all into one day. At times, however, I question whether or not they truly want to do all of these things, but at the same time, I understand that they feel pressured to embody the "ideal" medical school applicant.

One of my friends once said to me, "I need to beef up my resume", and it's sad to see how she now feels constantly pressured to apply for a volunteer position or a job because of this. I also see others dread the work that they do, but they continue to stick with it and overload themselves because they believe that is what admissions officers want to see. I am a firm believer of doing something because you genuinely want to and not because you feel like you have to, yet this mentality gets lost as one becomes so immersed in meeting the requirements of the medical school.

3. The balance

While doing well in your classes is important, so is eating, showering, and sleeping. In fact, I think that one's physical and mental health triumphs all else. I recall the hectic week that one of my friends recently pushed through. She had a weekend class and an exam as part of something she pursues on the side, and that same week, we had a chemistry midterm followed by a biology one and not to mention all of the other assignments we had due in between. My friend already felt tired and burnt out from the weekend, and this led her to miss a lecture and some homework assignments. She even went a day without eating an actual meal.

With only a bag of popcorn for dinner one night, she stayed up until FOUR in the morning to catch up on what she had missed during the day. Many of my other friends who are pre-med struggle to balance academics, extracurriculars, leisure time, and maintenance of their overall health because there is always a trade-off. There are only 24 hours in a day, and one thing has to be sacrificed in order to obtain the other, and I wish it wasn't this way.

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