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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman


    Reflections of a senior

    Here I am starting my final semester at Stony Brook. In a weird way it feels like I have been here forever, yet at the same time, it feels that my college career has passed me by in the blink of an eye.

    For all of the freshmen just starting out remember that, before you know it college will be over and you will be moving on to the “real world.” For all my fellow seniors, we all know that, despite how we are expected to act and how we are expected to move on in life, we don’t really feel that old or mature just yet.

    Just four years ago we were all in high school, and now we are all expected to behave like full adults. While most of us have figured out where we are headed in life (or at lease have a general direction in mind) one of the most important things I have learned in college is that everyone matures at his/her own pace.

    There may be those students who are seniors whom you cannot tell apart from someone who is 28 years old, and there are those seniors who still retain a lot of the qualities they had when they came into college. Personally I think I fit into the second group.

    I’m not saying that I haven’t grown up. I’ve just realized that there really is no hurry for me to “act my age.” Just like we have all felt the pressure to pick careers and majors, and all of us eventually found our way on our own, we also find our own ways in terms of our personalities.

    I’m going to talk a little bit about how I think it’s best to handle “growing up” in college and how you can come out on the other side of college having matured, yet not having changed who you really are inside.

    We all know those people who have become something that they weren’t when they started college in terms of personality, and that isn’t always a good thing.

    I’ll start with talking about the pressures of picking a career or major. When I first started college, I had an inkling that I may have wanted to do something related to business so I began taking finance-related courses. However I always left space in my schedule for other classes.

    Throughout my time in college, I have taken courses as diverse as art political science and writing. I told myself that, if at anytime my interests change, then I would owe it to myself to change my major and pursue that new field.

    As college went on, however, I found myself drawn more and more to business and to finance in particular, and I became confident that this was the way I wanted to go. I didn’t feel pressure because I told myself that I would take the decision at my own pace and never feel forced to pick a direction until I was sure about it myself.

    I received a million and a half suggestions and huge amounts of advice from people around me telling me what to do and where to go in life, but in the end, what really mattered was picking something that I would be happy doing every day for the rest of my life.

    I took the same path of reasoning when it came to growing as a person. However I can say that this is one journey that I myself have not completed and is actually many more times complicated than picking a major.

    When you get to college, you will be surrounded by many different kinds of people and a million different types of personalities. You will definitely feel pressure to grow up quickly if those around you are doing so. In the process you might lose some of the essential traits and quirks that make you you.

    People think that the social dynamic changes once you get out of high school and that high school is a particularly cliquey and peer pressure-filled time in someone’s life. The only thing that people don’t mention is that college and real life are essentially a giant versions of high shcool.

    People don’t grow up all of a sudden and start acting differently. I can say that I have made mistakes in college  and I don’t feel bad about doing so; you can only learn about  what you are capable of handling until you screw up. We all have to admit that some of our best memories were when we screwed up and learned from it.

    I’ve found that there are some people, however, those that don’t learn. When they do something that just isn’t them, there is that little voice that tells them so. If you keep ignoring that voice over and over again one day you will look back and realize that you just don’t feel like yourself anymore.

    So I’ll leave all freshmen with this advice: take everything at your own pace, never feel bad about making mistakes and make sure that you are the only one that decides what path your life is going to take.

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