Disclaimer: This is just a fun reflection post I put up for my birthday. I make no promises to offer and worldly sage advice, just a few more thoughts on senior year and turning 21. Enjoy!
Yes, I know the caption image is from the song “Superpower.” Yes, I am an avid Beyonce fan. No shame.
So I forgot to do a post yesterday – it was a pretty hectic and laid-back weekend at the same time. Today’s my birthday, and I’m finally turning 21 with less than 90 days to graduation. It’s also Dr. Seuss’ birthday, which I’m devastated that no one has mentioned up until this point.
More than anything, it’s nice to have a quiet day where I can reflect on how far I have (or haven’t) come since freshman year. Oddly enough, I can say that I’ve managed to accomplish everything that I wanted to do. And a bit more than that as well. I’ve been a lot of people at Lafayette College who have broadened my perspective on the world and what it means to be a global, engagement, and active citizen, which is more than I really could have hoped for at college. Most importantly, I’ve learned that I’m really never going to stop learning – which seems a bit obvious to most. But for me, I really had hoped to go to college, learn some marketable skills, and graduate. But now, I can sincerely say that I’ve done a significant amount more than that. And that’s really more than I would’ve asked for at college.
I think one of the greatest things about this year is coming to terms with what it means to be a college student, and a member of Lafayette’s community. More than half of the student body is full of over-committed overachievers (myself included), but I think that’s one of the many things liberal arts colleges offer that we can’t quite get anywhere else.
While I think its very useful to be involved in a single activity that they give their heart to. I strongly recommended allowing yourself to try things out. I really didn’t find my niche until junior year, and my that point I was having to deal with the level of social capital – both positive and negative – that I had created at our college. I think that it’s really important to be allowed to explore for a variety of reasons, not even just for the general learning experience.
I don’t think college is really about finding yourself. At all, really.
But I do believe that college gives the chance to discover who you are in relation to the world at large. The activities you take on, the professors you learn from, and the memories you create are all a reflection of the person who you have become in this world. I don’t think this viewpoint is isolated to college, or that college is the only way that you can accomplish these goals, but I think that it’s important to recognize that college may be one of the only places to get a full view of theories and methods behind social, scientific, and general societal concerns. You don’t have to take advantage of everything, but you should definitely refocus your efforts as well as you can.
… and if nothing else, do as much as you can to maximize your tuition dollars.