The Transition from High School

My name is Cherith McKinney. I am from Memphis, TN. I am currently a Management Information System major and sophomore at University of Tennessee at Martin. I see writing as an escape that to get away from everyday life. Writing has always been a joy and i’m glad I get to share my thoughts and ideas with others. I hope that the advice I give helps anybody that is trying to handle the ups and downs of the college experience and I hope you enjoy reading my work

So it’s finally graduation day; you have waited and dreamt about this day since the 9th grade. You’re proud of all your accomplishments, there is excitement in the air, and you can’t wait to step onto a college campus. You’re nervous about having to walk across stage in front of everyone and you pray that you don’t trip and fall. Finally, you hear your name being called and you walk across the stage with your head high and your chest out. At that moment, everything changes.
As exciting as the day is, you have to remember that is it also the ending of one chapter and the beginning of a new one. And where there is a new beginning, there are also new responsibilities and obligations. For instance, let’s say you have 15 great friends. You all hung out every day, thick as thieves. You ate together, spent most weekends together, and you tried to make sure that you took the same classes. Now the sad reality is, out of those 15, you may only keep in contact with 5 of them. You may be thinking, “How is that possible? I will never loose contact with my friends.” Well, I can personally tell you it is very probable. These kinds of things happen, not because you guys stop being friends, but simply because you grow up, move away, and everybody has a new set of situations to deal with and being on the phone isn’t going to solve anything. The biggest and most important issue in college is time management.
The life of a college student has some glorious days, but it’s all about how much work you really put forth. The biggest difference between high school and college is the amount of work you do, the type of work, and mindset that you have. In high school, you could kind of get away with not studying, but in college, you will probably be studying most of the time. If you’re smart, you will come up with some type of system, so that you can get the weekends to yourself. For instance, the way I set my schedule up, I had one class on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Friday that way I could study all day and do any homework. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I had enough time in between classes to get any homework done for the classes that I didn’t do on Monday or Wednesday. Of course, everyone isn’t so lucky when it comes to making schedules, so you really have to figure out how to study and how to make it effective.
The major thing about graduating and moving on to college life is your mindset or thinking process and self-control. College is a totally different animal that you have to tame and in order to do so you must think with more logic. For example, if there is going to be a party on Thursday (we party on Thursdays at my school because it’s like a ghost town on the weekends) and you want to go, you should plan ahead during the week. Now if you haven’t done enough studying for a test you have in the morning, you may consider going to the party, staying a couple of hours, and coming back and finish studying, but you end up participating in the party more than you intended, you don’t leave until 3 a.m., and you immediately go to sleep when you get back to your room. How well do you think you will do on your test? This situation could have played out differently if you had of thought this through. You could have gone to the party if you didn’t wait until the last minute to study. See, the thinking process must be different. If you are in high school, your parent(s) wouldn’t have let you go out on a school night and if they did your curfew was probably 10 or 11 p.m. So, if you did go, you probably would have had some time to do some more studying when you got back.
You have to think before you act. Self-control and logic are two major factors that some college students fail to grasp until it’s too late in the game. The point is understand that you are growing up and that means changes are about to happen. Learn to manage your time and think through situations, ask for advice if you have to before you act on impulse. Understanding those concepts will help you tremendously as you transition from high school into college

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