5 Cliches About College That Are Actually True

Categories: News, Student Life

There are a lot of cliché sayings you’ll hear about college in the coming months. The reality is, some can be true for one student and completely false for another.

However, I believe that there are a few that are arguably true for everyone. Despite your feelings about them now or how many times you’ve rolled your eyes when you heard it repeated aloud, some of those clichés are fact, not fiction. Take it from me – a senior who’s graduating from UNC Charlotte in a few days!

1 – It is an investment in your future.

Aside from the obvious costs you and your family pay before you even start college – application fees, enrollment deposits, housing deposits, and my personal favorite, dorm decorations, the next four years are going to be a big investment for all the years that follow.

As a freshman, I was concerned with what I was going to do after college. A big decision related to my future was choosing my major accordingly. And while that is clearly a starting place, it’s not half of what this cliché phrase means.

After two years of college and two major changes (shoutout to all the advisors who dealt with me), I was not only investing intellectually for my future in class, but I was excited to invest in my future outside the classroom.

I invested my time in two professional internships that provided me with real experience in the field I was studying. One of which actually led to landing a job post-graduation with one of those organizations!

For you, it might look like an internship too, or growing your networking skills, or maybe getting involved in a student organization that helps you find your passion and develop leadership skills!

2 – It is a time to discover yourself.

Speaking of passion, I’m sure you’ve heard this cliché about how college is a time to discover yourself. I don’t know where that lands with you, but for me as an incoming freshman that sounded slightly confusing and too much like a Hallmark Card.

Not to scare you, but you have a lot of growing up to do these next four years and a lot of challenges to come.

It’s during those challenges that I discovered how I react under pressure, how I should improve my spending, and how I want to better myself to be who I want to be.

Maybe you haven’t had to manage your own money before, but now you have a declining balance meal plan and you need to learn how to make that last all year. Maybe throughout high school, you just did the activity or club your friends did, and now you have the opportunity to pick from hundreds of student organizations that appeal to your own passions. Or maybe you’ll realize time management is where you need to work on yourself and your rhythms in order to be successful.

It will take time and some failures if I am being honest, but you’ll discover not only who you are now, but also who you want to become.

3 – You’ll find a schedule that’s right for you.

I’m sure you are too busy thinking of all the freedoms you’ll get to experience in college to think too long about this cliché whenever someone mentions it. I’d recommend you don’t brush off the encouragement too quickly!

For me, the newfound freedoms of my college schedule were slightly overwhelming at first. While I didn’t always like my schedule being created and managed by the administration in high school, I did enjoy the structure of it.

So, I found myself struggling to manage my time and find that rhythm I mentioned earlier, but I did find it! And– you will too!

8:00 AM classes aren’t for everyone (props to you if that’s you), so maybe try an early morning class and an evening class to see what works for you. Once you figure that out, make your next semester schedule with that in mind. You can and will find the schedule that works best with your study habits and other student activities, just give it time!

4 – You’ll make friendships that last a lifetime.

I grew up in a small town and literally went to school with the majority of the same people from kindergarten to 12th grade, so this cliché did not resonate with me in the beginning.

I also struggled to find a “friend group” when first arriving at college, shoutout to my suitemate for being by my side since actual day one.

With time and my persistence to show up at events and try different organizations, I found not one, but multiple groups of friends. Some shared interests with me and others challenged me to think differently than I commonly had. Some stuck around for a year or so, but others– like the girls featured here– I know will be around forever.

We as friends have been through a lot together in college, aside from exams, Cook Out runs, and Bachelor Mondays– we have shared heartbreaks and victories together. So, it’s not just a cliché, but one of the best gifts college has given to me.

5 – Enjoy it, because it will fly by!

With all of that said and all of the clichés there are, this one hits home a little closer because I’m writing this blog the day before my last day of classes as an undergraduate student at the best university there is.

I won’t lie to you, the days and weeks are long, but the semesters fly by! As I prepare to graduate, I am grieving the end of this time.

It was challenging and stretched me in ways I couldn’t have anticipated.

It was also the most fun and memorable four years of my life to date.

I am not the same student, professional, or person who walked onto campus four years ago and I am grateful for it. For I am better than I was then and I thank every friend, teammate, professor, advisor, mentor, and employer for their part in that. So take it from me, enjoy it! It will fly by!