How I’ve learned to survive college

How+I%27ve+learned+to+survive+college

Amanda Perelli

As I’m reaching the end of my second year of college, I’ve taken a lot of time lately to reflect.

I’m halfway done with my college career and somedays I feel like I only just got here.

I don’t care what your friend, sister, parent or aunt tells you. If you’re doing it right, college isn’t easy, and it shouldn’t be. Maybe these will be the best four-plus years of your life and maybe you’ll make friendships that’ll last forever. However. you’ll also shed a few tears and get a little homesick sometimes. It’s a package deal.

I’m not saying college is scary, I’m saying life is scary. In these four years, we are going to navigate the maps inside our minds and get to know ourselves like we never have before.

I’ve learned that I’m better in the mornings with caffeine, I like having alone time and I’ll do whatever it takes to avoid (what I believe to be) pointless drama.

Having classes all day long, homework and meetings to follow, or living with people I barely know has taught me to learn what works best (and what doesn’t work at all) for me as a person.

I know I’ll learn even more in my next two years here, but I’ve also learned deeper things, like how I have a hard time making friends, I put my heart and soul into everything I do and that sometimes all I need to do is relax.

I would have never learned these things about myself if I hadn’t had the chance to live with six other students, but it also took me two very difficult years to figure them out.

As college students, we tend to say that we are “surviving college” as if it’s a disease we have just been plagued with. What we’re really referring to is surviving this strange transition happening inside us.

Many of us are learning how to live again, but this time on our own. With this, and so many other responsibilities, a majority of us have never been as stressed out as we are as students.

We are stressed because of school work and striving to get the best grades possible, but we’re also stressed about things we have never had to think about in the past.

Yes, there are the obvious stressors like not being able to do your own laundry and turning all your whites pink, but there are also bigger ones like financial obligations and learning how to live on your own.

Americans are more burdened by student loan debt than ever, according to studies done by studentloanhero.com. I won’t worry you with the numbers, but it’s clear many people enter college with more responsibility in every aspect of their lives. 

We are loaded with these obligations, strange living situations and classwork, all while trying to figure out what any of this means and sometimes it affects us negatively.

More than 11 percent of college students have been diagnosed or treated for anxiety in the past year, and more than 10 percent reported being diagnosed or treated for depression, according Chadron State College.

If Quinnipiac University has an enrollment of about 8,000 students then that would mean that about 800 of them suffer from anxiety, depression or both. That’s a shocking number and shows that as students we need to learn to take care of ourselves when we come into contact with these new responsibilities.

As author and YouTuber John Green said, “Every year, many, many stupid people graduate from college, and if they can do it, so can you.”

If you learn how to take control of it, a little stress isn’t a bad thing because it motivates you to do your best. 

Throughout all of this, the most important thing we’ll learn is who we are, how to take care of ourselves and what hurdles we’ll need to overcome for adulthood.