Stephanie Navarrete is a recent graduate from Syracuse University with a B.S in Health and Exercise Science. Originally from Washington D.C, she is back home for a year, applying to Doctorate of Physical Therapy programs. While at SU, she was very involved on campus, in such organizations as: Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc, University 100, Sex S.Y.M.B.A.L.S, and Multiracial Experience. Throughout college, she worked at the campus Starbucks while juggling her academics and social life. Stephanie truly enjoyed her undergraduate career and would love to give back by encouraging other young people to do the same.
Once you get into the swing of things in college, life can get extremely busy. Between classes, studying, socializing, and campus involvement, it can be hard to maintain communication with all the important people in your life. I remember purposely not answering my mother’s phone calls because I did not want to hear what she made for dinner, I had chemistry homework to attend to. A lot of college students sometimes lose touch with their families, but family understands that you are focused and having fun as well. College students commonly forget about the others who helped them get to college: the guidance counselors, mentors, teachers, neighbors, or new connections they make throughout their undergraduate career.
If I could go back and do something better about my college career, it would be keeping in constant contact with those who wanted to be involved in helping me succeed in college and even afterwards.
I was blessed to have 3 teachers who truly helped push me into college and assisted me along the entire college application process. They helped me with financial aid since my parents did not know how to fill out the FAFSA forms and gave me advice as to where to go when I gained acceptance to various schools. These teachers came to my high school graduation even though they had been my middle school teachers. As time progressed within my college career, I forgot how much they had helped me get to where I was and lost touch with them.
Throughout my college career, I also was able to meet various people within my field of study and I was handed many business cards. I would eagerly follow-up with them after their presentations or upon meeting them, but after 1-2 email exchanges, I would forget to email them. When I did remember to email them back weeks or months later, I would feel too embarrassed to contact them after much time had passed.
Thankfully, I received a speech from my mentor about keeping all your contacts because you never know when you’re going to need them. I started reaching out again to people who had helped me previously, had the potential to help me later, and whom I genuinely wanted to be close to for career advice. Everyone was happy I had reached out again and when my college graduation came, everyone wanted to come and flowered me with graduation gifts.
You should not just maintain people in your life for what they can do for you. Sometimes, you just genuinely connect with people and you can give something to them and that is why keeping in touch with others is essential. Nowadays, it is simple to keep in contact with someone. There is email, phone calls, texting, and all sorts of social media applications to update people on your life and goals. Especially people within your career field, keep them close. In this ever changing work force, it’s not so much what you know or who you know, it’s who knows you. Also, keep in close contact with your parents, you do not want them worrying too much and calling campus security to check on you. Personal story, my parents really did that!