Advice for College

On too many occasions, before I started my freshman year of college, I would ask any and every college student what their advice for college would be. I often would be told some variation of, “I wish I got involved sooner”. I took that to heart–I didn’t want to waste a year, a month, or any amount of time when college is so short to begin with.

So, I headed into my freshman year and promptly signed up and applied to nearly everything. I got rejected from a ton of things, I joined things then quit, and I found my niches. But basically it was all thanks to the word:

“yes”

I said yes to everything. And I made sure I got it done. I was often busy and running around all day from meeting to meeting but I truly felt as if I was thriving. ((But, just as important saying yes is, it is also important to make sure you have down-time and alone-time.)) Additionally, I also felt that through major trial and error and throwing things at the wall and seeing what sticks, I found where I belonged. The following is a short list of the things that I accomplished, failed at, got rejected from, and didn’t do at all!!

What I accomplished:

  • I was a Compass Fellow (freshman year)
    • and then a Compass Mentor (sophomore year)
    • and then NYC regional director  (junior year-senior year)
  • I was a part of entrepreneurship society (freshman year)
    • and then I’ve on the e-board (sophomore year-senior year)
  • I got confirmed at the University Church, Spring 2014 (freshman year)
  • I ran the 2016 NYC marathon (senior year)
    • and I also ran 9 races including my first few 13.1s (sophomore-junior year)
  • I planned 5(?) conferences (freshman year-senior year)
  • I was a research assistant (freshman year)
  • I’ve been a part of the Social Innovation Collaboratory (junior year-senior year)
  • I went abroad to Granada, Spain (junior year)
  • I went on four retreats (freshman year-senior year)
  • I’ve had 5-6 random jobs (freshman year-senior year)
  • I’ve also kept the same IT job since Sep 2014 (sophomore-senior year)
  • Consistently got 8hrs of sleep (freshman year-senior year)
  • Had a lot of fun! Made a lot of friends! (freshman year-senior year)
  • Went to multiple entrepreneurial conferences (freshman year-senior year)
  • Was an Urban Plunge Assistant for the past 3 Urban Plunges (sophomore-senior year)
  • Was also a Social Justice Leader with DDCSJ (freshman-senior year)
    • a program which is unfortunately being discontinued next year
  • Got an offer for a full-time position before my senior year started (before senior year)
  • Got my major in IS and my minor in Spanish (which required multiple extra classes!!)
    • Can comfortably speak Spanish !! (junior year)
  • Volunteered for various organizations (freshman-senior year)
  • Learned how to code! (freshman-senior year)
  • Found a passion for social justice! (freshman-senior year)
  • Gave tours for the Rose Hill Society (freshman-senior year)
  • Had multiple awesome internships where I worked professionally and learned a lot (freshman-senior year)
  • Took several summer classes while working two-part time jobs (sophomore-junior year)
  • Can now handle myself in the service, customer service, and IT industries. (freshman-senior year)
  • Started this blog (senior year)
  • Started some facebook groups (senior year)
  • Took seven classes one semester–and it ended up being my best academic semester (senior year)
  • .
  • … Graduated College (to be determined)

What I joined and eventually quit

  • I was the freshman liaison for the College Democrats (freshman year)
  • Fair Trade Club (freshman year)
    • Study trip to India definitely didn’t pane out
  • I was a barista at Rodrigues student-run coffee shop (freshman year)
  • I was on the club rugby team for a practice (freshman year)
  • I was on the club swimming team for three practices (freshman year)
  • I was a consultant with the Concourse Group (freshman year)
  • Was on the budget committee for two meetings then quit (sophomore year)
  • Helped out with initiatives with It’s On Us, didn’t end up continuing throughout the year (senior year)

 

What I got rejected from / failed at:

  • CAB (freshman year)
  • Dean’s Council (freshman year)
  • Student Worker for Campus Ministry (freshman year)
  • My business ethics case competition was not selected to present (senior year)
  • I did not advance in the Fordham Foundry pitch competition (senior year)
  • A lot of different internships and jobs (freshman-junior year)
    • most notably, Square…definitely choked on that phone interview (sophomore year)
  • Got FUEMED (freshman year)

What I didn’t manage to do:

  • GO !
  • Dean’s List
  • Didn’t manage to start any initiative to help out with the Humanitarian Crisis in Venezuela

 

Alright, this can definitely seem like a bragging list. And to a degree, it is. But, I am doing this because I know that I often fail to pause and acknowledge and uplift my accomplishments.

Ultimately, my major point is–I’ve tried it all and I succeeded but also failed gloriously and I learned much more than anything I did in the classroom. The takeaway I’m trying to leave you with is–don’t be afraid to say yes and do it. Put yourself out there, get out of your comfort zone, meet new and different people, and take advantage of all the amazing opportunities being in college gives you. Don’t give yourself any opportunity to regret anything but as they also often say–college goes by so quickly.

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