Finals are fast approaching and the current semester is coming to a close, but for some of us students this semester wasn’t supposed to happen. This will be my sixth year of college, which is not something that was originally in my plan.
I knew I wouldn’t get out of college in four years since I changed my major from psychology to English in my second year, but life got in the way and an extra semester was added to my college experience. I was extremely disappointed in myself when I realized that it would take me longer than originally planned to get my degree.
I cried when I realized I was going to be in school for an extra semester.
Failing that class felt like the end of the world. The truth is, failing that class turned out to be pretty good for me. A class became available that would give me the credit I had failed to get, but this time focusing on one of my favorite authors rather than one of my least favorite group of authors. It also meant that I got to write for Odyssey for a whole summer and semester longer than I originally would have. My school’s Odyssey team is a fantastic community and I’m glad I get to be part of it. Realizing that I would graduate late felt devastating, but I’m actually pretty happy now with how things have turned out.
In my experience, most people don’t actually graduate in four years.
Most friends I made in college have taken five to seven years to get their degrees, some even longer. Sure, it’s not ideal. But there’s no reason to get down on yourself about it. Easier said than done, I know. But sometimes life doesn’t turn out the way you plan and you just have to trust that everything will be alright. Whether you change your major, you have to take time off, or you get overwhelmed and fail a class, there is no shame in taking longer to graduate than you originally planned.
College is difficult and stressful and I’m proud of myself for getting where I am and not giving up, and you should feel the same about yourself.