College Reflections: Advice
May 9, 2011 1 Comment
With the end of my college career approaching, I decided it would be fitting to write a series of posts reflecting on my years in college at John Brown University. The first two posts were about my experiences with School and Church. This final post in the series will contain some advice to those that are currently in college or will beginning that journey soon. Hope you enjoy!
I’d like to wrap up my College Reflections series with some advice that I have learned over the past four years.
- Prioritize: One of the hardest things for college students (and people in general) to do is prioritize things. Freshmen show up at JBU and instantly are presented with a plethora of activities, clubs, and friends to connect with and get involved in. As a result, many fill their schedules with 25 hours of activities in a 24-hour day. In order to really get the most out of the four years in college, it is important for each person to get his or her priorities. Of course, school/homework should come first for all students (if you don’t do well in school, you won’t be at school, and won’t be able to do any of the other stuff). Behind that, each person needs to decide what is most important and what they feel like will be the most fulfilling. For me, the list of priorities was school, church, internship at Harvard Avenue Baptist, internship at the Arkansas World Trade Center, JBUltimate club frisbee team, and everything else. Setting priorities makes it much easier to say “no” to certain things, prevents becoming overcommitted, and makes college even more enjoyable.
- Get involved: While it might seem ironic to prioritize and then recommend getting involved in activities, the two are quite compatible. Part of the college experience (as with any part of life) is what you do with it. The way that you spend your free time can be a great way to contribute to the community of your college, church, and/or city as well as glorify God. Some of my best memories from JBU are related to activities I was involved in: JBUltimate, Harvard Avenue Baptist Church, the JBU Honors Program, Passion Bible Study, etc. When deciding on how and how much to get involved, I suggest finding a few things that you can get deeply involved in and do those. Being involved doesn’t have to mean being a part of every organization on and off campus; it means committing to do things that you enjoy and will make a difference and doing them well.
- Be yourself: I have noticed that a lot of people try to “rebrand” themselves when they arrive at college. While this isn’t a bad thing in itself, it can lead to a loss of identity in order to fit a certain stereotype (ie “granola,” “prep,” “hipster”). Many of the students who thrive in college are those that are comfortable with who they are. So, be genuine; people notice.
Learn It. Love It. Live It.