Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Saturday, February 12, 2011
The following is a photo taken in late 2002:
Look at that young man's face! He's thin, he's smiling, his haircut isn't that awful, AND he's having the time of his life.
|I am apparently trying to crush Valerie's shoulder.|
Life as a college freshman was quite an eye opening experience. It was something that transmogrified a bright, painfully shy, somewhat closed minded young man into a bright, slightly less painfully shy, much less closed minded young man. I met some wonderful people. I took a couple of interesting classes. I made lasting friendships. If given the chance to do it all over again, there are very few things I would change.
After my freshman year, I had a decision to make. My academic performance was less than stellar(ha!), and my once large scholarship would be cut in half if I returned for another year. Oh to know then what I know now. Back then I believed that the only way I was going to be successful was to finish college. I was convinced that a college degree would guarantee a great job that was life affirming and lucrative. In my 20 year old mind there was only one option: go back to school in the coming fall and kick ass!
I went back.
I got my ass kicked.
The following photo was taken moments ago:
|I wave because I care.|
I am now 26 and I'm a bit heftier, scruffier, and more knowledgeable. I've learned that not having a college degree won't ruin your life. I've been working for UAMS for five years this coming September and have managed to secure a nice paycheck. Of course, a good chunk of that paycheck goes to student loans(over $500 this month alone) and credit card statements(we won't talk about that one). Had I decided to end my college career after my freshman year, I wouldn't be paying these student loan payments, nor would my credit card bills be at the level they are. Que sara, sara!
It's not that I don't plan to finish college. I do. I just know now that I should have waited on that sophomore year until now. Would I advise high school seniors against going to college right away? Never! Everyone should give freshman year a try and if it works out, keep going. If you come up short, maybe take a semester off, or a year off, or six years off : )
Just keep working.