7 Struggles of Your Junior Year of College…

Going into my junior year of college, I wasn’t expecting it to be as stressful as it has been. Looking back on my last two years of college, they have been easy compared to my junior year. Now that I’ve gotten further into my education, I am starting to realize that my future is a lot closer than I realize and I’m still not ready for it. With junior year comes questions, a lot of questions. Junior year makes you question your entire college career and below are some other struggles of junior year that I can’t seem to get away from.

#1: Being An Adult But Not Really Being An Adult

You would think that once you get in college that it would mean you are an adult. But by your junior year of college, you’re still wanting to see your parents on the weekends, you’re still going to be taking clothes home to wash, and you can’t possibly imagine paying bills. Being an adult may legally happen at 18 but really by your junior year you’re still wishing you could go back in time. And plus, you’re still not 21. So that means you have to deal with your stress the kid way. Ice cream and Movies. No wine for you.

#2: When You Realize You Might Not Graduate When You Want To Graduate

Going into college, you think that it’s going to take four years and that’s it, but over time you will learn that things happen. Life happens. You may have to stay an extra semester. You may have to stay an extra year. You’re going to want to change your major a thousand times and that’s okay. College is about finding out what you like to do. If that takes a little longer than expected, that’s okay too. No need to rush anything. You’re still young.

#3: Life Becomes Super Serious

In your junior year, you’ll suddenly realize that the fun is over. You will have to actually start caring about stuff. That means your life, your future, and what’s important to you. You’re going to hear from your friends less and less. Some friends are going to start getting married. Some are going to start having kids and building a family. You’re going to begin to understand that you’re not a kid anymore.

#4: You Have To Take Your Classes Serious

Freshmen year was about getting a taste of the college life. You might not have done great when it comes to your grades but after freshmen year it is not the time to keep slacking off. Take your classes serious because your GPA really counts. Your GPA is really important to your college career and it may be tempting to want to party every weekend but you went to college to get a degree in an actual field of study. Not a degree in partying.

#5: Money Becomes An Important Issue

Money just wasn’t a concern when you were in high school. That’s because you relied on your parents to give you money, but as soon as you graduated high school, you were expected to get a job. That means you are going to be expected to pay for your own stuff. And since you’re a college student, you’re going to be broke. It’s inevitable. But just remember it’s not going to last forever. You’ll be rich in no time. Just after college.

#6: Not Having Enough On Your Resume

I don’t understand why employers expect young people to have years and years of experience. It’s just not possible. But you need to have something on your resume even if it’s just a small part time job. And don’t wait to start getting involved on campus at the last minute (unlike me). My advice is to use college to get involved so that your resume doesn’t have one thing on it. Because after college, you are going to need a job and if you don’t have a healthy looking resume then getting a job is not going to be in your favor.

#7: Less Time to Figure Out What You Want To Do With Your Life

In your junior year, you are going to have to start making a lot of decisions. These decisions will affect your future. You’re going to have to decide what’s next. Will you finish school? And what happens when you finish? Do you want to go to graduate school? Do you want to move? Do you want to go straight into the workforce? Or do you want to take some time off? Questions like these will begin to weigh on your mind during your junior year and it’s going to stress you out more when you realize you have no idea what’s next.

With struggle comes success. No one said college was easy and it never gets easier over time. It may become more familiar over the years, but it definitely isn’t any less stressful. But everything will be okay in the end, right? Well, at least that’s what I have to think to help me get through it.

Photo Image by Element5 Digital


7 Quotes for College Students…

#7: “Sometimes The Smallest Step In The Right Direction Ends Up Being The Biggest Step Of Your Life. Tip Toe If You Must, But Take The Step.”

#6: “There Is No Failure Except In No Longer Trying.” -Elbert Hubbard

#5: “All I Want To Tell Young People Is That You’re Not Going To Be Anything In Life Unless You Learn To Commit To A Goal. You Have To Reach Deep Within Yourself To See If You Are Willing To Make The Sacrifices.” -Louis Zamperini

#4: “When You Face Difficult Times, Know That Challenges Are Not Sent To Destroy You. They’re Sent To Promote, Increase and Strengthen You.” -Joel Osteen

#3: “Remember, You Don’t Need A Certain Number Of Friends, Just A Number Of Friends You Can Be Certain Of.”

#2: “Opportunity Is Missed By Most People Because It Is Dressed in Overalls And Looks Like Work.” -Thomas Edison

#1: “If You Don’t Go After What You Want, You’ll Never Have It. If You Don’t Ask, The Answer Is Always No. If You Don’t Step Forward, You’re Always In The Same Place.” -Nora Roberts

Photo Image by Alexis Brown

7 Things I Wish I Knew Before Going to College…

Summer vacation is over and that means school is back in session. As we pack for college to start a new semester, we get excited about this new chapter of our lives. And while high school was very challenging to figure out, college will be a new challenge and an entire different ball game. Although people have to learn things on their own, there are certain things that I wish that I knew before starting my very first semester of college.

#1: High School Rules Don’t Apply In College

This first piece of advice is perhaps the most important. I know that you might have been class president or Mr. Popular guy or maybe even the smartest person in your high school, but that was high school. When you get to college, you are going to learn that they are a lot more people in this world than you can ever imagine and it is no longer all about you. High school rules just don’t apply to college. People may have held you on a pedestal in your hometown, but no one is going to do that when you get to college. Everyone is on an equal playing field.

#2: The Freshman 15 is Real

Being able to eat whatever you want whenever you want is great and this is what leads to your clothes slowly getting tighter and tighter. Trust me when I say gaining weight is inevitable. I gained weight. Everyone around you will gain weight. It’s going to happen. We are getting older, but you can help take control of it by making a plan to go the gym at least twice a week. Use the gym. You’ve paid for it.

#3: You Will Lose Touch With People

I know you have been to school with these people for years and you all have created so many happy memories, but the simple fact is, everyone that you hung out with in high school is not going to be in your life forever and that’s okay. You are all starting your adult lives. There is nothing wrong with going in different directions and losing touch with these people. It’s life. Everyone has to grow up.

#4: Everyone Is Not Your Friend

The movies are definitely not telling the truth when it comes to social circles in college. It’s very unlikely that you are going to have a huge group of friends that you hang out with and if you do, it won’t be like that for long. In college, you’ll learn that not everyone has to be your friend. Find people who will stick by your side and move on. And trust me when I say it’s okay if you only make one good friend in college. One good friend is better than dozens of people drifting in and out of your life.

#5: Get To Know Your Professors

I know in high school we called it kissing up, but everyone does it in college. Or everyone should do it. Professors are the people who will have a huge influence in your education and possibly the direction that you go with your career. Talk to them. Go to their office hours. Get to know them because at the end of these four years you are going to need connections, references, and recommendations.

#6: It’s Hard Being Away From Home

More than likely, college will be your first time away from home and by that I mean taking care of yourself. You don’t have parents looking after your every move so it’s now up to you to make your own decisions as well as figuring things out on your own. It’s scary at first especially if you aren’t used to being on your own. Like me, I decided to move four hours away from home which was both the best decision of my life but also the scariest decision. It’s hard not having your parents to rely on, but that’s part of being an adult. If you find yourself having problems that you need your parents for, just pick up the phone.

#7: You Need To Figure Out What You Want To Do With Your Life

In the beginning of your college career, you’re going to have to take general education course requirements. This is both good and bad. In doing this, you get a well rounded education and you get to decide what type of classes you like, but you are going to have to take some classes that you don’t like. In my case, math and science. But the time that you have while you take these general classes is not time to not pay attention. During this time, you need to be deciding what it is you went to college for. You don’t have forever because before you know it your four years are going to be over and you want to be sure you choose a major that best fits you.

Although these are the things that I wish I would have known before going to college, if someone had told me these things before going away, I wouldn’t have believed them. That’s because you never really know until you experience it for yourself. My advice is that you make the most of your college experience. Make mistakes and take risks. Good luck and make it count!

Photo Image by Stephen Bergin