After only a year at The Ohio State University, I am proud to say that I am no longer the student I was in high school. Though some things have dropped, I am confident that the path I am on now will prove to be most rewarding for me in the future.
I was stereotypically recognizable as a geek in high school. I only ever thought about my grades, and most of the time I spent Saturday nights at home contemplating doing my homework. My world consisted of school in the most literal sense; extracurricular activities and volunteer work served only to pad my resume. I thought that focusing on my attention on studying (or at least thinking about studying) was the only way to succeed in college.
It has come to my attention that my high-school experiences did not really prepare me for life at OSU. As much as I would like to bury my nose in a textbook like old times, I simply am too preoccupied to spend all my time worrying about grades. Though I did not intend to work, I someone found myself applying for student opportunities that I found interesting. My intention to only focus on class turned to getting involved with not one, but several clubs on campus. I don’t know if I recognize the new me, but it is a welcomed improvement.
For one, I now see how truly unfulfilling my life was in high-school. There was little to no variety, and nothing to look forward to. Holding a job on campus gives me a sense of accomplishment and knowledge that I am gaining real-world experience. Some concepts cannot be taught in classrooms; they can only be learned through trial-and-error in the professional world.
I love the feeling of waking up not knowing what the day will bring. I also love the fact that good grades are no longer the only things associated with my name. Now, did my grades suffer due to my newfound involvement? It is true that they are no longer perfect (as in 100s), but the dip is not so great as to make me regret the decisions I have made this semester. Not only have I grown as a student, but also as a member of society. I like knowing that what I do makes a difference (albeit small) in the world.