We Went On-Campus to Find Out First-Hand
By Alex Kantarelis
If you talk to anyone who went to college, I can almost guarantee one thing ~ they all remember their freshman year. Whether it was good, bad, happy, sad, full of studying or full of partying, it always stands apart from the rest of the college years. And that has a lot to do with the fact that it’s as freshmen that most of us experience our first taste of freedom. By sophomore and junior year, we’ve become slightly blasé about what really is quite a bit of freedom ~ and by senior year, we no longer even think twice about it. But to freshman, the liberties and the whole experience is so new and different that it can change lives.
I for one will never forget hearing from my fellow students during senior year in high school that, “In college, we’ll be partying every night, and getting so many girls!” Of course, the teachers had a different take on it, predicting that, “You’ll have too much homework to ever go out and party.” For me, reality turned out to be a little of both, so for this article I spent some time scouring the local college campuses to find some freshmen who could help me answer the question “Is college really what you expected?”
The search itself was an adventure. I went person to person, asking if he/she were a freshman, a question that usually received a dirty look and a rather obnoxious “NO!” In fact, one student was nose-down in a book and refused to even look up. Instead he simply yelled, “READING!” Needless to say, I scampered away slightly shocked. But when I did find the freshmen, I had a lot I wanted to ask. Here, verbatim, are some of the answers I got:
Does college live up to the hype?
When I was in high school, I thought college was like the movie “Van Wilder,” but it’s nothing like that. (Daniel Adeyemi, Shrewsbury – Worcester State)
College is a good time, man, 5 day weekends. Live up to the hype though? I don’t know. The parties haven’t been as crazy as I would have expected. (Mike Lepore, Arlington – Assumption)
You don’t have to report to anyone what you’re doing, nobody asks you questions about where you’re going and who you’re going with. (Meghan Fearon, East Hartford, CT – Clark University)
It kind of lives up to the hype and it kind of doesn’t, because there are a lot more chances for you to get in trouble. (A freshman who declined to give his name and asked to be referred to as “Mr. X” from Assumption)
What are some major differences between living at home with your parents and living in the dorms?
Sharing a room. I have never shared anything. There’s never a point that you can be alone in your room or in your dorm because everyone is always there. (Erin Burns, Plymouth – WPI)
You just do your own thing, you’re more independent than in high school. Study when you want, or party when you want. (Christina Cosenza, Worcester – Worcester State)
I like that there’s always someone around to talk to. (Jacqueline Buco, Methuen, MA – Assumption)
How do college and high school compare?
I have zero time, my schedule is packed. It’s a lot less structured than before, I have to write everything down just to make sure I’m in the right place at the right time. (Lindsay Carpenter, East Hartford, CT – Clark)
If you don’t want to do a report until the day before [it’s due], or if you want to do a report the day you get it, it doesn’t matter, as long as you get it done. (Jonathan Flood, Worcester – Worcester State)
It’s like a constant sleepover, because there are friends constantly around every night. It’s made me more of a slacker. (Elizabeth Demsky, Great Neck, NY – Clark)
What was it like leaving your friends to come to college?
When it was graduation everybody cried but I didn’t cry because it didn’t matter, everybody went their separate ways. The ones that really keep in contact with you are the ones that are true friends. (Julie Nguyen, Worcester – Worcester State)
What’s it like managing your time on your own?
Since I do a sport and I do club soccer and I work, it means that I have to manage my time well, and I do. (Mary Kate Cullen, Long Valley, NJ – Holy Cross)
Do classes stop you from partying too much?
Not for me, not yet at least. I don’t have the best grades in the world though. (Mike Lepore, Arlington – Assumption)
Talk to me about Facebook.
You see people you know on Facebook, but you don’t know if you should bring that up because it’s very sketchy. But you know more people and you feel more comfortable. (Kristen Miller, Lincoln, RI – Assumption)
I’ll see people around and look them up to see where they’re from. (Laurel Holden, Madison, ME – Clark)
It can be scary sometimes. I know lots of information about random strangers. (Bethany Kuhn, Plymouth – WPI)
So, does college seem worth it as an experience so far?
Yea, because I think I’ll come out of here a better person. (Mo Tiscano, Worcester – Assumption)
If I didn’t come here I’d probably be flipping burgers at McDonalds…you have to grow up sometime, and I feel that being here is setting you on the track to become more mature. (Erin Burns, Plymouth – WPI)
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