October 18, 2014

College Myths: Fact or Fiction

There are many things that I was told college would be or that I would discover college to be, but I find that not everything you're told is true, or more accurately, that not everything applies to you. Let's debunk some common college myths, shall we?

+ The week of midterms is beyond stressful. You will be studying at the library until two AM and take the test on only three hours of sleep. 
Fiction— Ok. This is completely and entirely dependent on the individual. If you are great at managing your time, you will have no issues preparing for and taking your exams. I've always been able to manage my time pretty well, and I've never been a huge studier. For college midterms, my system is to outline my responses a week or so prior to the test (one benefit of college exams, for me at least, is that you almost always get the prompt/question in advance), review the material a little bit at a time over the course of that week, and review again briefly the night before the test. This is just what works for me. I have never stayed up until the early morning hours to make sure I've mastered fusion of powers versus separation of powers or in what way Plato portrays the life of Socrates through the Gorgias.

+ You could gain anywhere from five to 15 pounds once you're on a meal plan.
Fiction— Also depends on the individual, though. Definitely not true for me. I've actually lost weight. Granted, I am certainly eating less than I should be, but honestly, unless you're consuming pizza by the box every night to offset the after-effects of all that beer you downed at the frat party (alcohol = weight gain), chances are that you won't pack on the pounds. That being said, loading up on macaroni and cheese, French fries, and hot wings in the dining hall is not that healthy.

+ College is nothing like high school.
Fact— College. Is. Nothing. Like. High. School. In high school, your teachers, parents, and older friends all tell you that college is going to be so different, that you have so much more freedom at university. "So much more freedom." Well, that is the most vague description ever. I'm not even sure how to describe the college experience, actually. The academics are obviously different, though I wouldn't say the difficulty level is that much greater, rather than just the workload is that much greater. Again, if you don't manage your time well, you are going to have problems keeping your assignments and personal affairs in order. 

+ There are so many different types of people in college.
Fact— My school is probably one of the most diverse in the world, being that the university itself is in the middle of one of the most diverse cities in the world. We have every ethnic background, every race, every culture, every sexuality represented in our classes and lecture halls. It was almost culture shock moving up here, even though I didn't leave the country, because the differences between my homogenous home city and this melting pot that is New York, New York are so many. 

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