Thank you so much to everyone who stopped by our tabling event and told us the things that you were afraid of coming to college! While you wait to see how the Peers suggest you handle all those terrifying college fears (keep posted for tomorrow!), see what the Peers were afraid of and how they overcame that fear.
I was really scared of coursework being difficult. I prided myself on how easy school was for me in high school, and I feared college would be different. Once I got here, it was more reading, but not always very much challenge. I wish someone would have told me earlier that I should look for a challenge, because things can get boring without one.
When I decided to switch my major to something related to the arts, humanities, or softer sciences (I flirted with both art history and economics before settling down with sociology), it seemed like just about everyone I talked to was an expert on whether or not I would get a job after graduation (hint – forecast calls for a 0% chance of employment).
I felt a lot of pressure from this – in fact, it took over a year from when I realized I wanted to change my major to finally doing it. As sociology and I celebrate our 2 year anniversary, I am beyond happy with my decision. And as far as post-graduation goes, I couldn’t imagine a better school to have prepared me for “the real world” than my little home in CAS.
I was super scared of making friends. I was scared that I wasn’t going to find people that were similar to the friends I had in high school, but I definitely found that being able to find friends that aren’t like the people that you’ve always hung out with is actually really great because that’s real life!
Also pretty scary – only making friends with the people on your floor. It’s great to do because your friends are always close by, but it can also put you in a social bubble and if there’s every tension (as there sometimes is in groups of friends), it’s nice to be able to get away from your floor and hang out with some other friends that you have.
Coming into college, I was equal parts scared and excited, just like most students are. My fears included everything that goes along with living on your own in a new place for the first time — that I wouldn’t make friends, the food would be awful, I would get lost on the metro, etc.
One thing I was less afraid of was the actual academics. In all the excitement of going to college, I might have forgotten that I would actually have to do homework and write papers — until I got back my first paper, that is. “See me” is all the professor wrote at the top, and vague red marks littered my five pages of hard work.
This is when the fear set in. Maybe I wasn’t cut out for it. Maybe I didn’t know enough. Maybe everyone would find out and laugh at me. Alas, these fears were misguided. I talked with the professor, came to understand what was wrong with my approach, and worked frequently consulted the TA as I rewrote the essay. That class was the hardest one of my first semester, but struggling diligently through each essay we had to write, and especially getting knocked down by the first one, set me up for future success.