How does college life hold up to the expectations of freshers?
I remember how I walked into my college the first day- dressed dandy, eyes glimmering with hope and my tote bag heavy, with things enough to last a zombie attack. The college itself was brimming enthusiasm and anticipation- the kind of anticipation only 18-year-old kids finally going to college can muster.
For some, college life is a new beginning. For others, it’s a chance to finally delve into what they love. Regardless, I wasn’t the only excited 18-year-old there. A romantic by heart, I was expecting my own Pitch Perfect-esque adventures. Coming to college felt like that Miley Cyrus song, the one where she hops off with a dream and a cardigan.
The first week of college felt great, but I knew it was too good to be true. The rose glasses soon came off. What I expected were breezy days where I could dress up to my heart and come and leave whenever I wanted, finally doing something I truly was interested in. What I soon found out was that technically college was all that, except with an asterisk that said Terms and Conditions apply in the fine print.
While I already had low expectations, the first thing that college changed was my study habits. Education took a backseat on this ride. Travelling for an hour for just one class became a chore and education for me started revolving around attendance, assignment submissions, internals, and externals. Like every other fresher, I got involved in college societies.
The biggest surprise that came was how the hype around societies failed to meet the expectations. The entire buzz around societies, auditions, and inductions mellowed down as soon as it dawned on us that societies, too, weren’t all games. The first week was filled with overenthusiastic students like me eager to be a part of every society possible. Fast forward to two months later, and half of us had already left or were regretting what we joined.
The desire to join a society, though, felt like a part of my bigger desire to fit in. To find a place. To finally figure out what it was that I was meant to do. It was easy to get lost in a space where everyone is just as talented, especially when I was still on my path to self-discovery and enlightenment.
The one thing that college did get right is the diversity and variety. That any given point of time, there was something happening for someone. Interested in student politics? There’s a protest in the Arts Faculty. A film critic? The film society is hosting a screening. Into drama? There’s a street play at the metro station. And this gave me, and every other fresher out there, a chance to try out new things.
College life showed me how it is easy to get caught up in this whirlpool. Easy to get lost in the eye of all this newfound freedom. Easy to forget who I was amidst assignments, projects, new friends, and ‘getting a life’. What they said was that college was about going out of my comfort box, meeting new people and discovering myself. What they didn’t tell me was how college was also five continuous classes a day, piling coursework and sometimes biting off more than I could chew.
But what I’m learning is that college comes with so many firsts. But it also seems like a place that makes things last and I’m just taking my time on my ride!
Featured Image Credits: DU Beat Archives
Comments are closed.