Misconceptions About College

Raise your hand if you are scared of going away to college. This time in your life can be extremely stressful. You are expected to pick a career path at the young age of 18 and then people tell you to decide where you are going to spend the next 4+ years. It’s a lot to process.

I was so worried about college. People put all of these ideas into my head and it freaked me out. I thought that my classes would be unbearable and I had no idea how I was going to make friends. I started college 3 years ago and it has been quite a journey. If you are contemplating whether or not you want to go to college, let me tell you…you need to go. I know that it is expensive and some people might have a plan that doesn’t require college, but it has given me life experiences that I wouldn’t have otherwise.

Professors are unfair…is a major misconception. I’m sure this depends on the university you go to, but a majority of the professors I have had were understanding and willing to help. If you introduce yourself and seem interested in the class, then I am sure you won’t have any serious problems with the professor. If you end up disliking a professor, then remember the importance of course evaluations.

Another misconception I had before attending college was–everyone just wants to party. Do people party in college, of course! Do you have to? No, unless you want to. Some people party, some people don’t. Some people are like me and are able to balance school and a social life. It’s completely up to you.

People are more mature in college…I have matured because of college, but that doesn’t mean everyone matures. Some people bring their high school drama to college. There’s always going to be those mean girls or man children. While this seems like a negative thing, it can also be comforting at times to know that not everyone is turning into a boring adult.

Sororities are full of rich b*tches…Before I went to college, I had this stereotype about sorority women. I thought sororities were about elitist women and I thought sorority “girls” were shallow. I was completely wrong. I joined a sorority and it has been the best experience. I have met some of the strongest women through the Greek community. I have had so many opportunities and I am eternally grateful to be a part of a sisterhood.

Another misconception is it takes only four years. Ideally, an undergraduate degree should only take four years. Because of more rigorous course loads and making the difficult decision of choosing a major, making it out in 4 years has become a challenge. The average length of time for an undergraduate degree is 5-6 years. Everyone has different paths and because of this, it will take longer for some people. You might graduate early, you might graduate late. Don’t worry about it, do what’s best for your education.

You’re on your own. This couldn’t be more wrong. You are absolutely NOT on your own. Your friends will be there for you when you need help. Typically, campuses have various resources ranging from financial to mental health services. There are so many people you can go to for help. Joining organizations is also beneficial. You can turn to your advisors, fellow group members, friends, RAs, etc.

College is a once in a lifetime experience. You truly find yourself. You figure out your passions, you have fun, and you gain a proper education. I know this is an unpopular opinion, but it is not a waste of time nor a waste of money. If you are attending college soon, please don’t worry too much. These years are going to be irreplaceable.

I hope this post was of value to you. This topic also got me thinking about sexual assault on campuses. If you want me to write about that, let me know. Sexual assault and violence against women is a serious issue and it is all too common in college. Thanks for reading!


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12 comments / Add your comment below

  1. All things said about college before I started were false…. I have come to realise that it’s filled with those things but there are also the good sides….. College life is one of my long lasting experience to share with my future kids and generations to come

  2. Hi Kaley. Interesting and reminds me of when I went to college many years ago. But for men it was different or for me it was? Basically in college I learned how to fight and stand up for myself as it was full of big headed bullies and gangs which I did not want to join, so in not joining I had to fight alone. I learned quickly and joined a karate class and sorted them out one by one and later became a 3rd Dan black belt and ran my own club. I had 3 children they all became black belts before college, my eldest daughter is 5th Dan snd has never been bullied by men.

  3. Inherent in your post is the reason I have developed a Gap Year program for my grandchildren approaching college age (after sending 4 children through the experiences you described). College today is insanely expensive (much, much more out of whack with incomes and assets than 20-30 years ago). In fact, college fails any rational cost-benefit analysis for more than 80% of the students attending now.
    Kids are not finishing in 4 years because the coursework is more demanding. Rather, the cynical administrators are scheduling courses in ways that discourage a 4 year completion, OR the colleges aren’t aggressive enough in helping students finalize a major (too many are changing majors 2 or 3 times because they don’t understand what their major really entails.
    That’s the reason I’ve developed a Gap Year program for my grandkids and others. Young people have a chance to breathe, to taste different subject areas & work lives, to travel and adventure while, at the same time, intensively learning some “hard skills” that make money and will backstop any other education choices they may make.
    Rather than 20+ years of student loan enslavement, my grandkids will start their careers with some savings to invest and the motivation to learn how to invest wisely. They are free to choose to be careerist workaholics in an area of their passion or to “work to live” (rather than live to work) in a stable, free, and financially independent life.

    1. Thank you for commenting! It sounds like you really care about your grandchildren’s well being. You hit the nail on the head, so to speak.

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