This was published in my previous blog, Paradox Sisters, on 5/3/2015.
It was National Decision Day for high school seniors on Friday. It inspired me to write about how much I love community colleges.
I was at the top of my class in high school, with a high GPA, honors, awards, and all the works. Going to a community college was not what anyone had in mind looking at my high school years.
But I went to a community college anyway.
I’ve learned so much there!
I learned to take things seriously and I learned that things aren’t handed to me – I have to work for it. This is something I heard all the time in high school, but I put none of it to practice until college.
I refined my interests. Only now I can say that I know what I want to do with my life. High school is such a self-centered time of life that you just get a sense of what you want to do. Whether those interests change or not, their reasons will change in college. This is simply because you’re exposed to so much more!
I learned my own style of learning. It can be by reading, listening, speaking, singing, drawing, writing, or however else. But you have to know how information is easily stored in your brain. I’m still working on that perfect learning strategy… Studying is more enjoyable the more I perfect it!
I learned that things take time. We’re often rushed to just finish school, whether we know what we want to study or not. That is not the best way to go. If you don’t know what you want to do, why would you waste 40 grand a year to figure it out? Community college classes offer a lot of variety for exploration. And if you started something and didn’t like it, don’t go on. You have to love what you do! Even if it takes you more than the traditional four years.
By no means do I mean “switch majors every time you don’t like that specific class you have to take to graduate.” That calculus class may be hard, but if you love building things and making them come to life, keep going in your engineering pathway! The chemistry class may be ridiculous, but if you love nature and you want to major in Environmental studies, keep at it. I guess I mean to say that I learned perseverance.
I don’t think everyone should go to a community college first. Many high school seniors can quickly adapt to the college environment beyond the social aspect. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with going to a community college first. Going there is only a step to a larger goal!
College is a life-lesson – whether at a community college or a university. So be grateful with wherever you are in the process of education.
B, a grateful community college student.
Last edited on 10/31/2015.