Good advice for college students

I am Jordan Facin and I am a sophomore Graphic Design major and Visual Arts minor at Roger Williams University in Bristol, Rhode Island! I am originally from the small town of Killingworth, Connecticut. Even though I attend a college in the smallest state in the country, I love to travel and hope to one day travel the world and experience everything it has to offer!

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

These wise words of Ralph Waldo Emerson have truly spoken to me in the last year and a half of my life. Growing up for myself was a constant struggle; trying to fit in, trying to get people to like me, trying to make myself as if I were someone I wasn’t, there was something always eating me alive. Throughout the first eighteen years of my life growing up in small town U.S.A., I couldn’t help but live with these thoughts in my head. From my awkward middle school phase, to my dreaded high school days, I strived for the day that I finally felt as if the world wasn’t constantly putting me down.
The highly anticipated day finally arose: high school graduation. I was never happier in my entire life than the day I said goodbye to my four years of private high school. And just when I thought all of my built up anxiety and stressing was over, it hit me: college time. I genuinely didn’t know what to expect; would college be better than high school? It had to be. Would I find people who actually like me? I hoped for the best. And so August of 2013 came around; it was off to Roger Williams University. From the moment I stepped on campus, I had this overwhelming feeling that I never truly had before: comfort. As I slowly made my way through the painful process of check in’s and lifting boxes, I finally unpacked into my dorm room and said “peace out” to my family. It was the weirdest thing; typically I find comfort in my family, as do most people; yet, here I was not shedding a single tear. I was happy to be “on my own”, and I knew it had to be a good sign. Up to my dorm room I went, and I slowly introduced myself to the other twenty-four residents on my floor. I found myself on the most awesome floor; students from China, Dominican Republic, even Rwanda were living there. The second I met everyone, it made me realize that no matter what personality I had, these were my people. Everyone was so comfortable together; it’s as if we all knew each other for far longer than a handful of days. We ate together, hanged out with one another, and even began to confide in one another some of our inner most secrets. For the first time in my life, I felt accepted by people my age. For the first few weeks I kept myself reserved; after all, I couldn’t scare my floor mates away just yet. It didn’t take me long to unleash the strange side we all have. For some, finding friendships is a struggle. It can be incredibly hard to read individuals personalities and to relate to them. However, if there is one form of wisdom I have, it’s to be yourself and never let anyone try to change you. Do what you love, and surround yourself with the people you enjoy, because at the end of the day, to be yourself around strangers is one of the bravest things one can do.
My freshman year has began to seem like a foggy moment in history; while I am more than happy to say I’ve found who my true friends are, it’s just strange to think that I rarely see some of these amazing people anymore. One thing my floor mates never truly realized is how much they changed my life. It’s because of them that I feel confident in being myself in front of complete strangers; it has opened new doors for me and has helped me discover some truly amazing friendships. And while freshman year has come and gone, and I have been surrounded by brand new people, I will never forget the memories I made with some of the most great people I’ve had in my life

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