I still remember getting my first acceptance letter from the first school I had applied to. My mom did the honors of reading the letter. The sound of her voice plays back in my head every time I think about it, “Congratulations! You have been accepted to Saint Mary’s College of California.”
My parents were thrilled, that all these online programs helped me to get to the college, I was proud myself and my parents started to Tango in the living room, which was both embarrassing and awkward to watch even though no one else was around. I was pretty happy that a small, private liberal arts college near home had accepted me.
However, I wasn’t very excited about the fact that none of my friends had applied to (much less heard) of Saint Mary’s. I was scared that we would all go our separate ways and barely stay in contact.
I was scared it would be like a corny teen drama, where a group of friends go away to college only to return completely different individuals with nothing in common. Also, the thought of living with a complete stranger terrified me.
After some encouraging words from my brother and a tour of the Saint Mary’s campus, I decided to take the risk. I sent my letter of acceptance and embarked on my four-year adventure the following fall. In all honesty, it was the best decision I had ever made.
Although my roommate freshman year was a bit of a slob, everyone in my hall was so nice and very friendly. By the end of the first month, we were like brothers. We did everything together. I made even more friends during class and when I joined the soccer team.
By the end of the year, I had just as many good friends as I did in high school. The cherry on top came that June, when my high school friends and I had returned home for every student’s favorite time of year, summer.
We had kept in regular contact through out the year, but hadn’t seen each other since we all left. To my delight, no one had changed. We were a bit more mature, but still the same goof balls. We spent almost every summer night together talking about our experiences in college so far, the friends we made, and what lifestyles we were getting into. The only word to describe that summer was glorious.
Looking back on my college career, it makes me happy to have chosen a school that I believed was the best fit for me. Although there was some risk involved, I think that’s the beauty of college.
It’s a chance for you to branch out, broaden your horizons, make new friends as well as do some soul searching. So don’t pick a college because all your friends are going there. Pick a college that calls to you, where you can expand your knowledge inside and outside of the classroom, so you can discover who you are and who you want to be.