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:
- College goes by really fast
- Call your family members, they miss you and are there for you
- Late nights are a given
- Naps are essential
- It’s okay to get out of your comfort zone
- ^^ 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
- Even though I truly enjoyed high school, college is so much better (albeit harder)
- There are a ton of great study spots around the libraries
- 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)
- Convincing yourself to go to the gym, even if it’s just ten minutes away, is difficult
- Eating healthily is fairly attainable with a dining meal plan… then again, it’s also easy to eat ice cream every day
- Ann Arbor has plenty of great restaurants for when you get tired of said dining meal plan
- Ann Arbor is a pretty cool place to explore in general