Purpose of College
College. Every bright-eyed, eighteen year old headed off to their first year of college has different expectations, goals, and anxieties. Everyone arrives excited to be on their own. It is the first time in your life where you live in a community of people your age.
The first couple of weeks are a breeze. Your first night out was nothing like you expected. You have so much freedom and you are not quite sure how to tackle it. This is more than you dreamed of and you couldn't imagine ever not wanting this lifestyle. Classes are just starting so they are not too challenging and you are going out with new friends every night.
As the weeks go on you begin to settle into your day to day schedule. Nightlife is still fun, but you find yourself dedicating more time to your studies because as the classes progress, you realize college education is no walk in the park.
Now for some, you may know exactly what you want to do with your life. You may know what you are going to major in and you may love it. For others, the road my be bumpy. Deciding on a major can be tough for some college students. This is not a decision that can be taken lightly. What you study shapes what you can do in your future. Plenty of students will change their major multiple times before finally deciding on what they want.
So that is it right? College's sole purpose is to get you a degree you can use to get a job? No. College serves a greater purpose. During your four years in college you should learn six priceless lessons.
- Education: You are here to learn. Although college has various other purposes, education is still one. You are blessed to be given another four years of education that most people do not have the privilege of receiving. Open your mind to new ideas. Challenge your beliefs. Challenge others' beliefs. Accept failure and celebrate success. This is the time in your life where it is more than okay to be incorrect. Mistakes are celebrated because they can lead to future success. Find a way to love whatever you are learning about. Everyone can relate to a certain topic somehow so find how that topic relates to your life. Don't focus on the grade. You are not in high school anymore. Grades are important, but they are not everything. You now have the ability to pick what classes you want and to enjoy learning again. Take advantage of that luxury and learn everything you can.
- Relationships: You will form various relationships throughout your four years in college. Many healthy, some detrimental, but all essential to developing as a person. You are half of every relationship you become involved in. Learn to take the bad qualities you see in others to adjust your own qualities to reflect someone you would enjoy spending time with. Love wholeheartedly. You are bound to find someone throughout these four years who you fall for. Forget about your past relationships or fear of relationships and allow yourself to fall deep in love. The friends you make these four years may be the men and women standing next to you one your wedding day. The best friend your children will call aunt or uncle. Although school is important and my seem to be the sole reason you are here, don't forget to immerse yourself in your relationships. College is a time where you will learn how to be a great friend/spouse.
- Travel: Take time to travel. Whether it be two hours to the nearest beach for a day trip or around the world four six months to study abroad, travel. You will most likely never have another time in your life where you have the ability to drop what you are doing and simply go. SO GO! Take your friends, boyfriend, girlfriend, teammates and experience the world. Visit the most random locations and find beauty in the world you live in. Cherish every moment.
- Socialization: Throughout these four years you will learn various socialization techniques. You will learn how to thrive in an interview. You will learn how to calmly discuss difficult topics in a classroom setting. You will learn how to manage a conflict with your housemates. You will learn how much is enough alcohol. You will learn so much in such a short period of time and you will carry these skills with you for the remainder of your life, tweaking them as you see fit.
- Time-Management: Whether it is your first year or your last, time management will be essential to your success in college. You will learn that the reading will probably take longer than you originally thought. All nighters are a thing. Coffee is your new best friend. You will work your butt off and maybe make a C+ on the exam. But it is okay! You will get the hang of it. You will learn how to balance your friends, studies, work, sports and possible sleep.
- Appreciation: The most important purpose of college is to appreciate what you have. Again, you are incredibly lucky to be where you are. Some of you will go through college because your parents always said you have to and are paying tuition without question, others will work relentlessly to get themselves through college without any help, but everyone has one similarity. You are all extremely blessed to be receiving an extended education, developing relationships different from any other kind, traveling throughout the world, learning how to carry yourself in society, and how to mange your time
To conclude, college is fun; college is hard; college is confusing; college is tiring; but overall, these are the most influential four years of your life. Make sure you enjoy every day because you have the rest of your life to use what you learned these four years. Make it count.