Reflecting on First Semester

As exams wind down, it’s finally occurred to me that my first semester of college is over. While I rejoice at the opportunities to see family, sleep in, and relax over winter break, knowing I am halfway done with freshman year is bittersweet. Retracing to the beginning of the school year, I’ll admit the first few weeks or so were intimidating. I remember calling my mom and confessing how much I missed her, my family, and my friends back home. I was worried about acing classes, making friends, and feeling “at home” in a new environment. How would I find my place at such a huge university?

Gradually, I found myself feeling more comfortable calling U of M my home. In fact, thanks to wonderful friends, great professors, and some spontaneous decision making, it didn’t take long for me to love life at Michigan (I also want to give a shout out to the Residential College for giving me a community to belong to). I tried different activities, both familiar and new, to further build connections and find interests. By stepping out of my comfort zone, I ended up forming some great friendships that made everyday life both manageable and enjoyable. Additionally, football games and arts events (which were/are sometimes free for students) were opportune moments to take a break from schoolwork and make memories.

Until now, I didn’t think anything would go by as fast as senior year of high school. This semester went by insanely quickly, and it’s almost frightening. While I still don’t know what I’m doing with my life, this semester has been incredible, and I hope to take advantage of the rest of my time here at U of M. Here are some things I’ve learned:

  1. College goes by really fast
  2. Call your family members, they miss you and are there for you
  3. Late nights are a given
  4. Naps are essential
  5. It’s okay to get out of your comfort zone
  6. ^^ You can do this by talking to people, taking a class you normally wouldn’t, or even going to events by yourself once in awhile
  7. Even though I truly enjoyed high school, college is so much better (albeit harder)
  8. There are a ton of great study spots around the libraries
  9. One way to hang out with friends during the week is by studying together in the dorm lounges (though be aware you might get distracted)
  10. Convincing yourself to go to the gym, even if it’s just ten minutes away, is difficult
  11. Eating healthily is fairly attainable with a dining meal plan… then again, it’s also easy to eat ice cream every day
  12. Ann Arbor has plenty of great restaurants for when you get tired of said dining meal plan
  13. Ann Arbor is a pretty cool place to explore in general

Elizabeth Schriner

Hello! I'm a sophomore who enjoys writing about drama, creative fiction, and arts events happening in Ann Arbor. I also enjoy writing about topics related to culture and current events. Enjoy!

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2 Comments on "Reflecting on First Semester"

1 year 4 months ago

So happy to hear you found your place on campus!