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Coping With College

  (Illustration by Nathan Hertzler) The fourth quarter of second semester has just begun, and for freshmen, sophomores, and juniors, this last stretch of tests and work just ends another year at CB. But for seniors, the thought of our nearing graduation is in the back of all of our minds. College is going to be […]

 

(Illustration by Nathan Hertzler)

The fourth quarter of second semester has just begun, and for freshmen, sophomores, and juniors, this last stretch of tests and work just ends another year at CB. But for seniors, the thought of our nearing graduation is in the back of all of our minds. College is going to be an exciting and unknown time in our lives that we will have to navigate on all on our own.

However, figuring everything out in the first couple months of college is going to be a challenge. We will have to deal with living with strangers, navigating a whole new campus or city, and taking classes in a new environment. While college will be a fun and amazing time in our lives, trying to balance these aspects will be hard and we may not have any idea what we are doing.

Fortunately for us, all of our teachers have experienced the college years and have picked up many pieces of advice to share with the future high school graduates. I talked to a few of these teachers and asked for their top three pieces of advice for students going off to college.

Educational Technology Specialist Ms. Brittany Williams: 

  1. “Make sure you don’t get an 8 AM class and also don’t get a 5:30 at night class.”
  2. “I suggest having your own stuff [when living with roommates]. Depending on where you are going to live, make sure you have your own mini-refrigerator [and] your own microwave.”
  3. “Never think that just because they don’t take attendance, it doesn’t mean you can just skip class and then just try to show up for the test. You can get dropped sometimes if you don’t show up and be prepared. Always attend class no matter what and communicate with your professor.”

 

History teacher Mr. Vince Leporini:

  1. “People say college is the best time because you have the most free time, so embrace the opportunity for relationship development. If you think of the times in high school, the most meaningful connections are on a retreat where you had time on a bus. College is a lot of time on a bus.”
  2. “Invest in professors that make you passionate about a subject. Meet them in office hours because that is where you will have the most meaningful education experience, especially at a big school.”
  3. “Get a job so that social security still exists.”

 

Math teacher Mrs. Courtney Hendry:

  1. “I went to a big public school after graduating from a small Catholic high school. Don’t let yourself become a social security number or your student ID. Keep the same relationships that you learned and developed with your professors or your TAs, keep developing relationships there with them.”
  2. “Don’t be afraid to change your major if it’s not what you want and seek out majors that you may have had no idea what they meant before you started taking classes.”
  3. “Remember it’s a short time in your life — enjoy it. It’s important, it’s stressful, but it’s an interesting time where you’re learning about yourself for the most part on your own.”

 

Talon moderator Mr. Dave Anderson ‘07:

  1. “Don’t take a class after 12 PM on a Friday.”
  2. “Sleep more than you study, study more than you party, party as much as you can.”
  3. “Don’t room with someone you know freshman year.”

 

Religion instructor Mr. Christopher Symkowick-Rose:

  1. “At some point in your college career live at least outside of Sacramento for a while. Do something abroad, spend some time outside of the United States”
  2. “Have fun and expand your social circles, experience all that college has to offer. Don’t just be a study bunny — get out there and be involved and meet some new people.”
  3. “Take the opportunity to visit and even spend of the holidays with some of the friends that you meet to see how other people live and engage.”

 

School Resource Coordinator & Head Varsity Men’s Volleyball Coach Mr. Polo Lopez ‘08:

  1. “Make sure you make friends with your professors. Talk to them as much as possible, especially in the G.E. classes. You are a number out of like 200 normally, and if they know who you are, you can kind of get away with more or you can at least build a relationship, so they’ll want to meet with you more if you need to or if you need stuff they are a little more open to it.”
  2. “Sleep twice as much as you study and study twice as much as you partake in extracurricular activities. You’re still growing and your mind is still growing so you need that rest whether you think you’re invincible or not, and then you’re there to study over other things.”
  3. “College is a new chapter and so you get to discover more of who you are, so branch out a little more. If you don’t like something, you don’t like something, but at least you tried it and if you do like something, then you can build relationships there and maybe even career opportunities. Be open to changes.”

College is a time where we will be able to explore what we want to do for a career and push ourselves outside our comfort zone to meet new people. Hopefully, this advice will make navigating college a little easier.

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