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On College Career Students prior to joining the first year of college have formed expectations about their future lives in college. For some students, the expectation of uncontrolled freedom is prevalent and therefore they are very eager to be part of college life. For other students, there is the fear of what might happen once they join campus, as well as the challenges that they may encounter while trying to adjust to the new environment. These fears are quite natural but at the same time, they are draining since they compel someone to question their decision to pursue further studies.
This can be a cause of turmoil to one’s peace of mind. About one year ago, while I was in high school, I was aggressive and focused on passing in my majors so that I could qualify for university.
I set a minimum target grade of B for each subject, under which I would still feel that I needed to improve.
I sat for my final exams and I got my longtime desired A-grade, which meant I could now pursue my dream career. However, I have been in a state of self-doubt regarding whether the campus will be a smooth ride for me because I am a very shy person. At this point, I have clarity about the relationship between mindset and achievement according to Carol S. Dweck’s theory of biology. Carol’s theory classifies students into two: those with a positive mindset, and those with a negative mindset.
Students with a positive mindset are comfortable and persistent in their learning despite the difficulties that they may be facing, while those with a negative mindset shy away from facing their problems and in the process call it quits.
Susan David, on the other hand, talks about the gift and power of emotional courage, where she highlights that in this current world that is filled with emotional rigidity, one needs high levels of emotional agility to thrive successfully. My fixed mindset will play a huge role in influencing my college life. As a new Santa Monica College student, I expect to face a number of challenges such as debt management, time management, depression, failure, stretching too thin, transitioning and adapting to a new environment and making new friendships. Time management is the greatest challenge I’m expecting as I join Santa Monica College. The numbers of classes are few than those in high school, but they are more intense with a lot of content. This is attributable to the option to take up more units and to balance school work with social life.
To overcome this challenge, I plan on being patient with myself and choosing a few subjects per semester that are easy to comprehend even when revising for the exams. Debt and financial management are imperative since there has been an increase in tuition fees in addition to the numerous expenses while studying. These additional costs include food, transportation, costs of buying books and printing assignments, as well as recreational costs so to get rid of the fear of missing out. These additional costs are the reason behind student loans being so common especially during the first year of college. However, most students are prone to taking more loans than they can manage to pay once they are out of campus, the result of which is being in debt for most of their working years. To get rid of this challenge, I plan to only take a student loan as a last resort.
Meanwhile, so as to get extra cash, I plan on opening up a new on-campus job. If this is a success, there will totally be no need of taking a student loan to sustain me in my years of campus. Also, if the business is not a success and I’m left with only the option of taking up a student loan, I plan on first estimating the minimum salary I’m likely to receive once I’m out of campus, and then make sure the student loan that I take is less than the estimated salary amount. Spreading myself too thin is yet another challenge I expect to face as I join campus. This challenge goes hand in hand with that of trying to solve my financial issues. Most students try to combine school with working, relationships as well as with extracurricular activities with the main aim of getting extra money to sustain them while they are on campus.
For some, it is a success but for most students, it is quite a big hustle that most times leads to low grades at school. To overcome this challenge, I plan on prioritizing on what is most important at the moment and then rescheduling for other activities during my extra time. If I must get a job while on campus, I plan on requesting my employer to adjust the working schedules so that I can fit classes in between. More often than not, it is possible to doubt whether you will be up to the tasks handed to you. This is a natural feeling especially when a person is subjected to a new environment with a different set of conditions (David). I may have been performing well in high school but the fear of failing in this new college environment is a big obstacle to success. To deal with this challenge, I plan on trying in my best of capabilities to use the school resources provided to see to it that I don’t fail in my exams.
From going to the library for research, asking my fellow students and even communicating with my lecturers, all these are steps that I plan on taking to see to it that I don’t fail in class. A strong network of students and professors will most likely lead to good performance in class. Another challenge that I expect to come up with as I join Santa Monica College is that of depression. The occurrence of the above named expected challenges could lead to depression. Depression has become the biggest bug among young people on campus, especially when they feel like they are not enough. According to the psychologist’s, Susan David’s TED talk, depression is the main cause of disability in all institutions and it has even outstripped heart disease and cancer (David).
It is because of depression that most students resort to the use of drugs as well as an addiction of the same. Susan David advises that people have emotional agility so that instead of suppressing their emotions, they be allowed to speak out about exactly how they feel. Depression comes as a result of negative emotions and thoughts being suppressed over time. Depression has been named in 2018 to be the main reason behind the number of suicides and suicidal attempts among both the young and old people. Depression is a very big class distraction and it leads to poor performance in class inevitably. To deal with the challenge of depression, I plan to visit the counseling center offered by the campus so that I can talk to a professional about issues troubling me. Opening up to someone helps ease the tension in a person’s mind and is the best way of dealing with depression.
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