Today is the last day of classes. Three finals and I’m out of here. Let me take some time to ruminate over my first year at UD.
Did I make the right choice?
As someone who has lived in Delaware her entire life, the only thing I wanted in high school was to get out of this tiny, unknown state with a population of less than 1 million. I wanted to major in Industrial Engineering. And now, I find myself one year later stuck in Delaware majoring in Operations Management and minoring in Math and Asian Studies. Not exactly what I had planned out for my life, but I do believe I made the right choice.
Delaware has had a lot to offer me. Besides amazing in-state tuition and scholarship money, UD has given me a lot of things. The campus is beautiful (when it’s not raining, which it is now) and the school itself gives me the freedom to study what I want. Throughout my childhood and adolescence I’ve wanted to follow many career paths: In the 8th grade I wanted to become an anthropologist, early on in high school, I wanted to be a history or math teacher, I’ve fantasized about becoming a musician or writer, by the end of my high school path, I thought I was destined to becoming an engineer, and now I think being an entrepreneur is what I really want. I have come to realize that what I’m doing at UD lets me do all of these things. My Asian Studies minor allows be to study people and culture like an anthropologist and I get to study both history and math with my minors. My operations management major gets me close to the engineering dream, without all that science, because frankly I don’t even like science that much. And all in between, I can participate in music and write on the side, on this blog. And with all this, I can hopefully own my own business one day, doing what exactly I don’t know, but I’ve always wanted a knitting cafe.
I’ve had a more than satisfactory time in classes. I got to take an English class about music, a course on Japanese history, an entertaining introductory course in psychology, and a colloquium on the pop culture of the 1970s. Being in the Honors program definitely has its perks. I have come to realize that I’m actually a very good writer. I’ve gotten A’s on all of my papers this year (go me!)
I have had an awesome Freshman year and I give all the credit to the UDMB. Ever since I joined the marching band during my Sophomore year of high school, I have vowed to do my best to keep doing marching band. I have met the greatest people through the UD marching band and they have become my closest friends here, despite coming from a school where half of your graduating class goes to the same college.
Something I could do without is the drinking culture. I can honestly say that in my 19+ years of existence I have never had more than a sip of alcohol at my first communion in the 2nd grade. I don’t mind if other people do it, but it’s my personal choice not to drink (and I don’t plan drinking ever, even after I turn 21.) That kind of leaves you out in the cold socially on a campus where it’s all about the parties and how many shots you don’t remember taking last night. But it’s college, and that’s what people want to do when they are finally independent and whatnot, I guess. I just don’t like how people over do it and obnoxiously walk around yelling nonsense in the middle of the night. I want to have fun, but I also want to remember having fun and not regret anything about it later. I want to be able to say that I did something awesome/amazing and it was under my own influence and not some chemicals reacting in my brain.
Living in the dorms is quite an adventure. My room wasn’t tiny, but I’m glad that my room next year is going to have more space. Sharing a bathroom with 20 other girls is definitely a challenge. I hate having to lug around my things when I go take a shower or wash my face. And the bathroom can get really gross sometimes. Actually anything in a dorm can get really gross sometimes. Last week I woke to pretzel crumbs lying all over the floor in the hallway. I will never not wear shoes or socks outside of my room again. I’m I got paired with my roommate, though. She’s not weird, and weird by my standards is really weird. We are different, but we understand each other’s quirks. The rest of my floor has a great dynamic. Everyone’s really close and although I chose to bond with the people I met during band camp before school started, I don’t have trouble integrating with my floor if I feel like it. I can float freely in-between.
I think the main thing I regret is not getting more involved on campus. Sure, I’m in the marching band and I participated in the orchestra pit for a production of Phantom of the Opera, but I wanted to go out and do more. I didn’t really step out of my comfort zone. I wish I had done more community service and had been active in business clubs and culture clubs. I need to connect with other people in my major and want to meet some other Asian students.
I also regret bringing so much stuff to my dorm. I did not need my entire wardrobe with me. I also did not have enough storage to keep all my random items that I occasionally used.
A microscopic part of me regrets missing out on going to at least one “real” college party. I know I wouldn’t like it, but just to say that I went, like prom.
Over the course of this first year, I have determined what works for me and what doesn’t. I will hopefully continue my perfect attendance for the rest of my college career. Going to class is always worth it, even if you don’t always want to be there. I will continue to work hard and not procrastinate. I have yet to pull an all-nighter. I like my sleep too much.
Next semester, my main goal will be to go out for more activities. Being Vice President of the new Knitting and Crochet club will help. I want to get involved in more volunteer work and be a bigger part of the community. And next year, if I don’t decide to study abroad during the summer, I will try out for marching band staff.
I want to land an internship to build my resume and I have a couple interviews once school officially lets out. If I don’t get one, I’ll be applying for some retail positions most likely or maybe working at the library. My family is going on vacation to Cancun for a week in July. It’ll be my first time on an airplane and out of the country! Other than that, I’ll be busy working on my Etsy shop.