student in cap and gown
Stanley Morales | Pexels
College taught me a lot.

As I leave CSU, I wish you all the best on your journey

The most valuable lessons I learned as an undergrad have helped me become the woman I am today. These lessons were key to my success in completing my 4-year journey. 

As a college student coming into a university, one of the first thing a student automatically thinks of is graduating. Some students go off to a university, while others go to a community college for their first two years. Either way, college is an experience you can’t find anywhere else. 

My college experience was filled with so many different emotions. When I first entered college I was terrified of not making friends and afraid of the course work, but my experience was everything opposite of what I thought it would be.

During my freshman and sophomore years, I went to Lakeland Community College and obtained my associate’s degree. I then went to Kent State University for two semesters and ended up leaving because of the commute to and from school. I then transferred to Cleveland State University to finish my undergraduate education. 

I thought when I got to college I would keep the same major throughout my years, but that was not the case.

It is OK to change your major throughout college, especially since you’re figuring out who you are. I didn’t know what I wanted to do until my junior year. I was very indecisive about my major, but I eventually figured it out. My senior year is when I knew what I wanted to do with my degree.

College to me is a learning process and once you finish, take what you learned and apply it to your life. I am filled with so much gratitude as my time at CSU comes to an end. I learned a lot about myself and I am happy with my journey. I would like to offer some tips that may be helpful to students that helped me along the way. Here are five things I learned during my time at Lakeland, Kent State and finally Cleveland State.

1) Don’t procrastinate

Procrastination robs us of our time and energy. In college, I would procrastinate to get work done. It was the biggest mistake because I would get behind on assignments. Sometimes we put things off and never get back to them, until we absolutely have to. If you can get your school work done on time, do that. In fact, if you can work ahead, work ahead. It is better to be ahead than to be behind. 

2) Get tutoring

Taking several classes can be stressful so I highly recommend reaching out to a tutor for any assignments that may be unclear. It is good to get tutoring in the beginning of the semester, that way you have time to work the assignments and not get behind. Going to tutoring helped me get a better understanding of classes that I was behind on and it allowed me to get caught up.

3) Go to class 

Going to class might seem like a no-brainer. But too often we don't do the most obvious thing for academic success. The key when going to class is to pay attention to what is being taught. Take good notes while in class, ask valuable questions and be prepared to answer questions. Not going to class will cause you to get behind on class assignments and also miss out on important information. 

4) Build relationships with your professors

Having a good relationship with your professors is another key component to having a successful semester. Visiting them during office hours and getting to know them as people as well as teachers is a way to build a relationship with your professors. Fostering a sense of mentorship is a beneficial way to ensure great student success. Great relationships can secure you a letter of recommendation. 

5) Believe In yourself

This final step is the most important step. Believe in yourself! Believing in yourself can make all the difference in how you work in the classroom and how well you perform outside of the classroom. Having confidence in the work you do will ultimately put you in a better position to succeed. College is not easy, but with hard work and confidence, I believe any student can succeed. Believe that you can do any presentation, group project, homework or in-class assignment. The four years are going to go fast so you want to make sure you make the most of it. 

The best take away from this is to go for it and be confident of the work you do in your undergrad career. Don’t be hard yourself and know when to take a break and have “me time.” Stay focused on your journey and your reason. College can and will get overwhelming at times, but don’t get discouraged. There is nothing you can’t do.

As my journey as an undergrad comes to an end, I wish you the best of luck on your journey.