I have a small space to sum up my college experience, offer my parting wisdom and bow out of the best four years of my life graciously, so I have to choose what I say with extreme care. Here is my best attempt to squeeze in the most important things I’ve learned:
Being a good student can be satisfying, but it’s mostly overrated. I am that sucker who always goes to class, turns in assignments on time and puts 100 percent effort into my schoolwork. I’ve done the internship thing, and I have been rewarded for my hard work in some ways. When I do well on a big assignment, I feel accomplished and capable. This semester I learned that a professor who thinks highly of you is invaluable.
Honestly, though, the rewards are often outweighed by other factors. I was a good student, but I don’t have a job lined up for after graduation. Students who cheat on assignments get better grades than me if they know how to cover it up. No matter how sick you may get, professors think you are lying about why you can’t finish your assignments. At my internship last year, I sat around and stared. Now that I’m about to graduate, I’m so sick of my major that I’m not sure I still want to be a journalist.
Being a total screw-up isn’t worth it, but don’t think twice about skipping a class here and there. Choose internships wisely, not for the sake of your resume, and don’t be afraid of having an imperfect GPA.
Living in the dorms or off-campus is an invaluable experience. Existing independently of your parents is sweet. It’s taught me how to take care of myself. Living with your peers makes you a more tolerant and open-minded person. I’ve known people who have had awful roommates and it never killed them.
Living with your closest friends after freshman year is challenging, but it makes you even closer to those friends. And, as a side note, leaving your roommates notes on the mirror in your bathroom will make their day.
Facebook is not worth stressing over. I’ve been guilty of getting upset over what someone writes on someone else’s wall or pictures plastered all over my news feed. I pondered deleting my account for a while, but then I realized a Web site isn’t worthy of dictating my moods.
When you’re on a college campus as sizeable as Seton Hall’s, there will be people who don’t like you, people you feel uncomfortable around and situations you wished you never got involved in. It’s not a big deal. If you don’t like certain peoplesomeone, you only have to deal with the possibility of running in to them for a few years. If there is a rumor going around about you, just remember you’re nobody unless you’re talked about.
Sleep is for the dead. Don’t ever stop hanging out with friends to go to bed no matter how late it is or what you have to do the next day. Doing random stuff in the middle of the night with friends created my favorite college memories. If you’re debating whether to go out on a particular night, always go. You only have four years where you will all be in the same place. Squeeze every last bit of fun out of it that you can.
Samantha Bennett is a senior journalism and public relations major from Verona. She is the Features Editor and a four-year member of The Setonian. She can be reached at email@example.com.