Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Five Valuable Lessons I Learned in College
Do you ever wake up in the morning and wonder "what's the point of going to class?" A lot of people will remind you by pulling out a horrifying figure breaking down the cost of college into cost-per-class, but I say-- well, I still say that's a lot of money and you probably shouldn't waste itgotoclassnow. But there are some things I've learned while in college that I didn't get from a lecture.
1. How to Text Using T9
During "Week One," Clark's orientation, a girl I hung out with at the time found out I still used ABC to text. She was obviously horrified and immediately took it upon herself to teach me the ever-dreaded T9/Word for all my texting purposes (you know, the one where it fills in the word for you-- like magic!). I haven't gone back. This is a skill I use every day, people.
2. The Value of Moving On
When I started college, I was planning on waiting for a guy who was clearly no good for me (an ex-boyfriend, my first boyfriend) to get home from Marine Corps. boot camp. While I got perspective-giving space from him, I found out my roommate had a really cute friend. We hit it off almost right away. Relentless flirting commenced-- but I was still unsure for awhile whether I wanted to forget my ex-boyfriend for someone I barely knew. I did, and hear I am, over two-and-a-half years later writing this with him sleeping next to me.
3. How to Play Video Games
I'll put it this way: before college, I could count the times I'd played a video game on one hand. Now I fantasize about becoming a game journalist so I can get tickets to E3. That aside-- valuable? Games, to me, are like interactive movies, a source of inspiration and wonder and new worlds. Some really make you think. Most of them give you a way to interact with your friends that's just really fun. Sad or not, it's something I do now on a near-daily basis-- my brain hasn't rotted, either, thank you.
4. How to Live Without TV
My junior year roommate wasn't a big TV-watcher. That isn't exactly true: she watched plenty of The Office on her laptop, but I digress. I used to need the television on almost all the time (I hated silent rooms), and my previous roommate had been pretty much the same. Once I got used to not turning something on just for the sake of it, I really liked the peace and quiet. I didn't watch as much trashy VH1 programming, and I loved how much energy I was saving. I probably got more homework done, too.
5. Not to "Categorize" People
Clark's orientation week involves watching a whole bunch of skits about how to live at college, one of which is based around our unofficial motto: "categorizing is not something we do here." Clark prides itself on having a diverse campus, which was something really new for me-- I come from a town that's 97% White, if you check the statistics. A lot of Clarkies joke about "categorizing" due to the campy performances we had to sit through about it, and because it seems so hyper-P.C., but one of the best parts of college for me was meeting new people from all different cultures and learning that you really can't judge a book by its cover. Whenever I make a snap judgment about someone I don't know well, I try to think of this to remember I shouldn't be so quick to judge.
What lessons did you learn in college, or high school, outside of class?