College experiences build character

In-Focus Editor and In-Focus Editor

In case you haven’t noticed, these sections have been awfully selfish for me to write, because every issue has dealt with something I deeply care about.

This is because I feel like an average guy. I feel confident that my experiences with these issues can connect with you all.

This column is no exception, because I can see graduation on the horizon, and I am sure a quarter of this population is thinking about the same things I am.

College is the most intense emotional roller coaster ride I have ever taken, and I am thankful for all of it.

No one is a fan of writing papers and taking tests, but I have to admit that even my most dreadful classes have given me something.

A good amount of life involves dealing with unpleasant situations, so even if you didn’t learn any useful facts, you certainly built character.

Even more, I feel a sense of accomplishment. Although I may not feel like I learned a lot of actual facts from papers, the all-night effort to get the grade reflects perseverance I never knew I had.

That’s how I look at college in the grand scheme of things. Even if you decide to try something unrelated to your degree after college, your degree will reflect to your employer that you are willing to complete a task like four years of college.

As a journalism major, I am asked all the time if newspapers are a dying field and whether or not I have a job.

The answer to both is no, and I am not worried.

First, journalistic skills can be applied to a broad set of jobs. It taught me how to approach new people, interview them and sharpen my writing skills in the process.

As a sociable person who can work diligently behind a keyboard as well, I would say I’m marketable.

And as someone who can still be pretty shy, I would say these assignments forced me to grow a bit (and I am still growing, admittedly).

We can’t forget about extracurriculars, either. Working at this newspaper has allowed me not only to meet people, but also to learn how to balance school with real-world experience, which isn’t always easy.

Sometimes, it hasn’t always worked. I am not the best at dealing with failure, but putting myself into higher stakes situations allow me to face failure head-on and toughen up.

Or better yet, I can succeed and make the risk worthwhile.

In addition to developing skills, extracurriculars are useful because they provide chances to experiment in ways that you may not have time for in the real world. If you make the most of your college career and take advantage of your resources, it may well be worth staying an extra semester or two.

However, I would say I’m ready to graduate. I always enjoy a good ceremony that celebrates our accomplishments.

Not to mention I get to sit on the basketball court in the Stroh Center, where the games provided me with some of my best college memories.

That’s a great way to tie together great memories from the past as I look forward to my future.