First things first, snow. The wet, slippery, sloppy pathways to class are like completely some military mission in Andes Mountains. As you can probably already tell I don’t go to school in California. I go to Knox College in Galesburg Illinois, which is about 3 hours outside of Chicago. The whole point of this post is to let you know how I dealt with the Midwest weather conditions in the winter.

The first day I came back, I spent an extra week in Chicago with one of my close friends before going to school. For that whole week we were in Chicago, there was no snow in sight. But we knew once we got to school the weather would be much more different. So while I was in Chicago, I went out and bought; scarfs, heavy layering clothes, and a parka. All these new pieces of clothing felt so foreign to me. I never thought that just to walk down the street I would need to put 4-5 layers on. The first day back on campus, still no snow. So we just lived our lives without the white stuff on the ground. But the first day of classes in the new term, it started snowing. I never experienced real snow before in my life so everything was so different. At first, I loved the snow, until I had to walk very carefully to class, I could never run late because I physically couldn’t run through the snow.

Winter term, personally was really hard on me emotionally. I’m not sure if it was the snow, or my friends, or stress from school. But it definitely tested me mentally. I often found myself wishing I could be home, with my family and away from Knox. I even found myself wanting to leave school, and I was overall just questioning everything in my life at that time. After the snow started clearing, I noticed myself being a lot more happy, and excited for spring. Me and snow are like frenemies, sometimes I love it, sometimes I hate it.

Parties, Friends, Time Management.

Reflecting back on the first term of my freshman year, leaves me with 3 really important recurrences. The first, parties. Being that my school is made up about 1,400 people, the parties aren’t that big or advertised. But I did go to a lot of parties my first term, and I found myself in a lot of different situations. Partying, and being social is a really big part of college, so my first term, I took it upon myself to make sure I go to a lot of the parties my school had! Parties, also lead to alcohol and drugs, which is something all college students should be aware of. I countlessly saw people being carried out of parties for being too drunk. So in a way its all about knowing your limits.

Secondly, friends is and was a really important factor to me my first term. I became close friends with a lot of the girls I live with. But I also made really good friends with people I don’t live with. Finding the right friends in college hasn’t been extremely hard for me, considering I was a very social person in high school. So my advice to any person starting college is to make friends with people who genuinely care about you and share similar interests with you.

Lastly, time management was huge for me first term. I often found myself reading a head or doing extra homework to get ahead and have enough time for things beside school. Time management was also very crucial for me during finals week, pulling 3
“all-nighters” in order to study for my Africana Studies final paid off entirely, just remember we humans do need sleep and a social life.

A Month In…

College is the time when we young people grow, experience new things, and get a higher education.  I am currently a first year college student here at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. I originally came to Knox with the intended major of International Relations/Global Studies. When I sat down with my Academic Advisor, we talked a lot about the Political Science aspect of IR and I wasn’t really interested. So I started classes that are in a sense random yet beneficial to me.  My favorite class that I’m taking this term would have to be Intro to Africana Studies.  I feel like I’ve already learned so much more about Black History than I have ever before.

I feel like the main thing that has surprised me the most about my college experience is how involved in class discussions I am. Prior to coming to college, I was really nervous about not feeling smart enough to participate in class discussions, but since my classes are so small, each with 10-20 people in them, I feel more confident to let my voice be known.

Another surprising aspect of my college experience is how non-involved in school activities I am. In high school, I was involved in nearly every club on campus, and I was pretty much president of every organization I was in. So, here at Knox, I’ve just been bouncing around from different club meetings and genuinely getting a feel of my academics before I started getting myself into anything I can’t already handle.

So far, I’ve become more familiar with myself personally and emotionally. Since I’ve been at Knox, I’ve only really been homesick about once or twice. I simply try to find the good about every situation I’m faced with.  I’ve also learned who my real friends are here at Knox and at home. A lot of people loose touch once they get to college, but if a relationship is legitimate, both parties will do anything to keep the relationship strong.