Things I Wish I Knew When I Was Applying to College
T'is the season of college open houses and campus tours! Honestly this is my favorite time of year. I love sitting on the 9th floor of the UMass library watching all the massive tour groups wander around like lost kids on a field trip while I cry over massive amounts of homework and test prep.
When I was in high school, I thought I knew it all. I thought I was gonna go to NYU and take over the big apple. I thought I didn't need a 'real' college campus, and that things like athletics and campus activities really weren't important to me. All I cared about was being in New York.
I've found a home where I am now, in the beautiful western hills of Massachusetts that is UMass Amherst, but I let my vision of what I thought I wanted college to be cloud what I actually needed in a college.
| That I Don't Learn So Well In A Lecture Based Class |
I thought going into college that lectures were the norm everywhere, especially since I knew I didn't want to be at a small school (2000 people or less). I had no idea that not all schools are like that and that most medium sized schools actually teach in normal classrooms or smaller scale lecture halls that almost resemble classrooms.
Look at how you like to learn. If you're constantly raising you're hand and starting class discussions in high school then lecture based learning probably isn't for you either.
| Student:Faculty Ratios Do Not Mean That They Don't Have Mostly Lecture Based Classes |
UMass Amherst has an 18:1 Student:Faculty ratio. this means nothing for actual in class experience. All it means is that if you need to reach a faculty member (usually in the undergraduate resource department) you can. But usually very class you take as a freshman and sophomore will be a lecture between 100-400 students per class with maybe 1-5 Teachers Assistants hosting discussion sections for the class.
| That I Wanted to Join a Sorority |
When my friends from high school said they were gonna rush in the fall of their freshman year I think I actually scoffed. I didn't see the point, or understand why. When recruitment came and went during the fall of my freshman year I started wishing I had gone through it. Then sophomore year I did it! I tried going through, but didn't find my home because of my own ridiculously high expectations, but don't worry guys - something super fun is happening in the fall and I can't wait to tell everyone about it!
If I had known that this was something I wanted to do before college, I would have looked at schools with a larger greek life, and schools with more of a close-knit campus feel.
| That I Actually Liked Going to Sports Games in High School |
I couldn't wait to be done with high school to be done with going to stupid games that I didn't care about. I was psyched to go to a school that equally cared as little about there sports teams as I did, until we actually didn't go to the game.
It was so sad! I missed getting ready and pretending I knew what was going on while my boyfriend heart-idly explained it to me.
| That I Actually Love UMass |
UMass was my safety school, and I wasn't excited to go here, but overtime it's become my home. I was so focused on NYU that I didn't see what was right in front of me. Don't disregard the state school in your state just because it wasn't your first choice. It may be your home too.