Remember Aprill? She was featured as our first blogger a few weeks ago when we first started blogging. Now that she’s been at UMD for a little while, she wanted to talk about the end of her journey here at UMD as she is now in her second to last semester before she graduates. Enjoy!
It’s hard to believe it’s already the fifth week of the semester. I shouldn’t be surprised because the year always flies by like this, and yet I always wonder where the time goes. It’s my third year at UMD and I’m doing more now than I ever thought I would.
I had high aspirations for myself entering the university. I promised myself that I’d make the investment worth it, that I wouldn’t say no to things, and that I’d always remind myself of how privileged I am to be here. That’s often easier said than done.
Sometimes it feels as though I say “yes” to more things than I can keep track of (and my epic pen collection for color-coding can show this), but like many college students, I worry I’m still not doing enough. I may be doing XYZ, but the student walking past me in the hall is working on VWXYZ and looks good doing it. It’s likely all in my head – and often the people walking past me aren’t interested in the career path I am – but I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels this way.
However, I am coming at it from the fairly unique perspective of being a transfer student. I thought I’d have to work twice as hard as a transfer student to make friends and join clubs, but that’s never been the case. (That doesn’t mean I feel relaxed enough to slow down, though. The irony of college.)
One thing I’ve noticed is that it’s almost too easy to get involved at UMD, and it’s because so few people do. The opportunities practically fall in the laps of students who express even a slight interest in the experience – and that usually turns into a leadership position a semester or two down the road. On the one hand, I’m glad that I benefited from this system. On the other hand, I wish more people were involved. I wish I knew I was succeeding based on merit, not on an underrepresented system. (And yes, I realize how ridiculous it is to complain about this, so I’d like to set the record straight that I’m not complaining, I’m just observing.)
It tough to see people spend large sums of money to go here while trying to spend as little time on campus. It just doesn’t make sense to me. I know some people who see college as the time to live it up and party, but I’d rather do that when I’m done with college and not paying thousands of dollars in tuition.
It may be a factor of being a first generation college student, but I can’t help but feel like my experience as a transfer student causes me to approach my education with more intention. I’ve seen what it is like at other colleges and know how lucky I am to have access to the resources UMD provides. Sure, people can point out things that are lacking – and there are certainly critical issues to examine – but that’s true for any college. I’m glad I chose this one.
This is my last year on campus – and a year longer than I thought I’d be here – but I’m happy to know that I’ll leave with the education and experience I always wanted.