New opinion editor from freshman year to senior year. Photo courtesy of Katie Baker.
As I enter my senior year, I’ve started reflecting on life lessons I’ve learned throughout the past three years. Before coming to Millersville, I had very little knowledge about what college was like, what I needed in order to be successful, and had no idea what to expect. Listed below are what I believe to be some of the most valuable things I wish I knew before coming to college.
- It’s okay to eat alone – I used to be terrified of eating alone and I would even skip a meal if no one could go to the dining hall with me. I distinctly remember even bribing my friends who had already eaten to take a trip to Upper Deck. Now as a senior, I love taking time to eat by myself. Finding the self-growth to be able to do things on my own without worrying if other people are watching me (and I can promise you, no one is) has been one of the most important life lessons I’ve learned.
- Join clubs and organizations – It might be a little awkward at first, but the people that you meet in these kinds of settings are the friends that you will have for life. Millersville has an endless list of clubs, activities, and organizations on campus that are waiting for you with open arms! Whether it’s an academic related club, intramurals or an organization on campus there are so many different avenues that you can take.
- Bring an umbrella – This sounds silly and you may never even need it, but I can promise you when it’s pouring down rain after class you will be so thankful you had it. I learned this lesson the hard way. Two weeks into my freshman year we had a terrible thunderstorm that swept through Millersville. I had to run with my roommate from Pucillo all the way to South Village in the pouring down rain. It took almost three days for my shoes to dry!
- Rent your textbooks – Amazon and Chegg should be your best friends. Another budget friendly option includes using Facebook to find groups with specific Millersville graduation classes. Before school and towards the end of the semester, students are always looking to sell their new or used textbooks!
- Explore the area – This is something I wish I would have spent more time doing within my first year at Millersville. Lancaster is full of beautiful hiking trails, family owned businesses and really great food. If you aren’t able to drive yourself, Millersville has a bus system that can take you all over the area, stopping at places such as the Park City Mall and downtown Lancaster City.
Looking back on the past three years of college, my biggest takeaway from these experiences is that throughout your time in Millersville you will be constantly challenged to grow and figure out who you are. When you face what you’re afraid of, you find out what you’re made of.