In a couple months school will start up again and for a lot of tittering freshman it means wondering what exactly they want out of their college experience. I started my 4 year journey (yes, yes I am one of the proud few who managed to graduate in 4 years) as a second chance to live up to what I never was in high school. I was a crap student in high school and I wanted to do better in college and have my choice of any graduate program I wanted, a choice I didn’t really have for undergraduate, and I did just that. I graduated Cum Laude with the Outstanding LBST Student Award for the highest GPA in my class. But, as corny as this may sound, I graduated with so much more than that. I graduated with 120 sisters, a boyfriend, a run of ex’s, amazing memories, and 4 years of greatness I wouldn’t trade for the world.
I work in First Year Experience where part of my job is to give speeches to freshman about being successful in college and I always wrap those talks with the advice that to be truly successful in college you have to have fun. Find your second family, whether its a Greek family or just a misfit crew of friends just find your niche and embrace it. I remember giving my talk to a group of first years just a few months into my senior year and trying to explain to them how I was tearing up making the powerpoint because it was finally hitting me that, for me, it was the beginning of all my first lasts.
I was staring at these totally blank faces as I tried to make them see that it’s all over too soon. It ends too soon. There was this night, a bit trashy to be totally honest but, a night I wouldn’t trade for the world – a guy, not my boyfriend (never was), this guy that I was always sort of back and forth with we were never together but always had some weird connection, anyways he was always sort of pushing me beyond myself making me do things totally out of character. So this night, after some err drinking, we climbed through the attic of his frat house and onto the roof and in a totally cheesy scene plucked straight from a rom-com we just sat up there looking at the stars and then looking down at drunk people and mocking them. That moment, for me, is always the one that I remember when I think of college not that it was that particular guy just, that moment of doing something stupid and out of character and cliche. That was college for me.
I will never forget the roommates who bought me a bottle of vodka when I went through the worst break-up I’ve ever had, they were the first friends I ever cried in front of. Then there was the time we dressed up like ghosts and drove around scaring people. Greek week and a new boyfriend, even if it took me until Halloween to get him to figure out I was trying to get his attention ;). Sleepovers and late nights, the Cave room rules, little sisters, big sisters, black outs, stories, and love – I fell in and out of love with boys and most importantly I fell in love with my best friends. I would give up every grade point for those moments and memories.
Take it from someone who’s been there. It ends way too soon, and way before you’re ready.