My name is Catherine Brackett. I am a freshman Journalism major and Business and Fashion double minor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I’m from the small town of Blair, NE and have never lived outside of Nebraska. I aspire to write for a magazine and live in New York one day
There is nothing else in my life that I can compare the start of my college career to. Starting this new chapter in my life was the most exhilarating, stressful and fulfilling experience I’ve ever had. Though there may seem like there are countless things to do in so little time, I guarantee everything will fall right into place more perfectly than you would’ve expected. Here are some things I wish I had been more aware of when I began college this last year.
Don’t expect you know everything about yourself just yet. I am appalled at how far I’ve come and how much I’ve grown as a person since coming to UNL. You are never aware of change until you reflect on the person you once were, and it’s an eerie realization. All of your experiences and the people you meet will force you to change into a different version of yourself. Personally, I’m content with the person I’ve transformed into. I’m not necessarily a different person; I’m just a better version of myself. I’m hopeful that I will continue to grow and mature as I continue throughout college.
Be open to everything. All of this positive change within yourself cannot take place unless you open yourself up to it. By “it” I mean people, ideals, beliefs, experiences and whatever else you can think of. You’ll meet an array of people throughout your years at college, and they will have so much to share with you. I love to hear people’s stories and to hear their interesting perspectives. Anything anyone wants to share with you may change your perspective of things, which will help continue your growth as a person.
Your relationship with your parents will change. I never thought in a million years my relationship with my parents would be as intense as it is at this very moment. And I especially didn’t expect them to miss me as much as they do. It’s surprising how much independence you gain when you fly from the nest, even if it is just for a short nine months at a time. When I was at home, I couldn’t wait to leave. However, my first semester of transitioning, I didn’t mind going home every weekend. I’m lucky enough that home for me is just a short, hour and a half drive from campus. I do appreciate the free will I have at campus and will probably miss that the most when I go home for the summer.
Campus will become your home away from home. Here you’ll build relationships that will last the rest of your life. You’ll learn more about yourself in a short amount of time than you ever anticipated. You’ll always have people to turn to, inspire you and challenge you. You will always find new, interesting things to do; you will never be bored.
This year has been nothing less than an extraordinary journey for me. If I could go back and change anything, I wouldn’t. There are so many opportunities that have been thrown my way, and there will be so many more. College isn’t for everyone, but I encourage everyone to give it a try.