Advice from Seniors to First Year Students

By Janezia Ketchel
OP/ED Editor

As graduation approaches and seniors prepare to bid Carroll goodbye, we have asked several seniors for words of advice that they would like to provide to upcoming and current first years.

College, in general, brings a very stereotypical image to the general public’s mind: partying, studying, eating, and making lifelong friends. However, as a college student, you only have so much time, or in other words, not enough time for each of those. “Sleep. Academics. Social life. Pick two. Or one and a half,” stated Sarah May. In my college career, this statement rung extremely true. I always had to choose between going to bed at a decent hour or studying the night away. Of course, sleep won most of the time. It just meant that I needed to manage my time wisely and remember what my priorities were.

Speaking of sleep, I do not know about you, but if I do not receive enough sleep, I am ten times more prone to get a cold. And colds majorly upset my abilities to perform at my best as a student. Morgan Tondrealt agreed with me: “School is important, but you are more important. Your mental health and your happiness should not be put at risk just to get an A on a paper.” Though it may be very tempting to pull an all-nighter working on a paper, do not kill your immune system to do so. Instead, plan accordingly so that you do not need to pull an all-nighter in the first place.

College is a great place to socialize and make life-long friends, and one of the best ways that I have found to do so is to, as Elizabeth Morgensen said, “Join an org! I can’t emphasize that enough. It will help you make friends and look good on resumes.” I did not really think about joining any organizations until my sophomore year, a decision I regret. If I had joined the orgs I became a part of sooner, I could have made close friendships sooner. As a freshmen, I was lonely, surrounded by hundreds of other freshmen wondering how to make new friends. Joining an org bridged the gap between other people and myself, created a foundation where friendships could be made.

Another way to make life-long friendships and better yourself all around is to travel. “If it is at all possible, spend a semester studying abroad. The CCEs are cool, but as someone who did both a CCE and a semester abroad, I gained so much more academically and personally from the semester-long experience. Nothing beats moving to the other side of the world without knowing a single person or understanding the language. It is terrifying, but absolutely worth it,” said  Ellen Coatney. As a student who also studied abroad for a semester, I completely understand what Coatney was saying. I studied abroad in Florence, Italy, which I can say was a highlight of my life. Not only did I make friends and see various parts of the world, I also boosted my self-esteem and my confidence. Even with the language barrier, I still connected with the Italians and their culture, which is completely different from ours. I may have spent all of my savings and cannot remember more than five words in Italian, but I would repeat my experience there in a heartbeat.

Overall, college is a very important portion of your life with a lot shoved into just four years (or five if you stay longer like I did). So what will you do with that limited amount of time?

Look below at the Senior Bucket List complied by the many seniors interviewed!


Author: Janezia Ketchel

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