What college freshmen want graduates to know

Lily Glowzinski, Staff Writer

It’s the final countdown. After a grueling nine months of school, seniors are finally ready to graduate. For the past twelve years, seniors have had everything laid out for them: first elementary school, then middle school and finally high school. Now they have to decide for themselves what’s next. For many seniors, the next step is both an exciting and terrifying concept: college. This leaves seniors asking “What now?”

“It is okay to not have all the answers,” explained Audrey Allen, a Milford High School graduate. Allen, a college freshman, started at Oakland Community College (OCC) and will be transferring to Michigan State University in the fall. Allen was originally hesitant about going to community college due to the stigma that is often associated with it compared to larger universities. “I struggled with the idea that going to community college was going to let my parents down, which is not the case at all,” Allen said. “It was the best decision I could make for myself, and it saved me so much money. I am so satisfied with my choice.” After a successful year at OCC, Allen urges seniors to consider what choices best work for them instead of following what everyone else is doing. “Find what you’re passionate about and go for it in whatever way is best for you,” said Allen.

Once at an institution of higher learning, high school graduates have some other important advice.

A common thread among the advice from college students is to stay up to date on assignments. “All of your due dates are already predetermined,” explained Paige Ducharme, a Hartland High School graduate and current Oakland University student. “There’s not a lot of professors saying, ‘here’s your homework, it’s due tomorrow’ so you have to know your due dates,” Ducharme advised.

Similarly, Taylor Tatum, a Milford High School graduate and current student at Western Michigan University, encouraged future college freshmen to stay on top of deadlines. “Don’t put things off until the last minute,” Tatum advised. “You’ll just be stressed.” Another former Milford High School student, Mathew Kassab, agreed with Tatum. “If you fall behind, it’s a lot harder to catch up than it is in high school,” explained Kassab, a current student at Michigan Tech.

Despite the emphasis on staying on top of assignment deadlines, college students advise high school graduates not to overly stress about college. “Don’t worry too much if you don’t understand a concept in class,” Kassab said. “Give it a bit of time, go over it with a friend, and it’ll be fine.”

Lily Evo, a Powers High School graduate and current student at University of Mississippi, advises graduating seniors to actively engage in activities that their colleges offer. “Get involved in your school. It’s the only way you will meet more people faster,” explained Evo after spending her freshman year on her college’s dance team. Tatum also encourages college freshmen to be more adventurous. “Make new friends and try new things. Don’t stick with what is ‘safe,’” Tatum suggested. “Moving to a new city and not knowing anyone was a lot stranger than I thought it would be, but it was the best year of my life,” Tatum exclaimed.

College is both a scary and exciting topic for many MHS graduates, but college freshmen urge high school graduates to reduce their anxiety about the transition. From joining group activities to time management, college students advise high school graduates to take the time to enjoy college. “Take your time and don’t rush through these next few years in your life,” concluded Allen. “They go by just as fast as high school.”

Lily Evo representing University of Mississippi, referred to as “Ole Miss”.
(Lily Evo)