Colleges are going to start the fall semester in just a few weeks. For incoming freshmen, it can be quite scary to adjust to a new school and new environment. Especially with the major changes coming to campuses everywhere, there are probably more questions than answers in students heads. While the appearance of the semester will be totally new for everyone, the basic principle of the college experience remains: finding your path and discovering who you want to be and where you want to go in life. How to do this? Try everything.
For most campuses, clubs and organizations are a major part of life. While classes are important, many students find their sense of direction and belonging in extracurricular activities. I know this is true for myself and many of my closest friends. When I first got to college, I knew I wanted to be involved, especially since I was a commuter and that meant I couldn’t be on campus every second of everyday. There was a general direction of things I wanted to try, but there was a lot I left up to fate. My campus thankfully hosts an involvement fair at the start of every semester. Through this fair, I was able to discover my school’s film club. I wasn’t entirely sure if it was the place for me, but I figured I could try a meeting and see where it goes. I attended that first meeting, and ended up loving it.
I had a similar experience with my school’s newspaper. I had seen their table at the involvement fair, but didn’t want to over-extend myself. After handing in an assignment for my first-year writing class, my professor had given me very kind compliments, and recommended I write for the newspaper. I decided to reach out to the executive board, and soon enough, I was enjoying writing for the school paper, and it helped to solidify my desire to be in communications & media.
Clubs and organizations are far from the only way to experiment. While some majors have very strict requirements, courses in general education, liberal arts, and electives can be a wonderful way to branch out and test the waters. My first semester, I decided to take an Intro to Marketing course (which counted solely towards my 120 credit graduation requirement), and I’m so thankful for that experience. While I don’t want to necessarily go into full-on marketing strategy, it gave me a great foundation for understanding the entire process, and helped me to take an interest in the advertising segment of marketing. My honors program also allowed me to explore other topics not even related to my major or career just for the fun of learning.
The idea of “try everything” isn’t just limited to the college sphere, but rather, a mentality for life. If I had never tried blogging and content creation, I don’t think I found have found myself on the path I am on now. Had I not taken up some of the collaborative and intern-like opportunities that I’ve come across, I also don’t believe I would have as clear of an idea of what I’d like to do post graduation. Life is most certainly a winding path that changes direction frequently, which makes an open-minded attitude all the more important. If you don’t like something, you never have to do it again. However, if you never even give it a chance, you’ll never know where it could lead or be able to form a truly educated opinion on it. As we all are starting a new chapter in our lives, we must remind ourselves to try everything and anything. After all, who knows where it could lead?
See ya real soon,