WHS Graduates Share Their First Impressions of Their College Experiences

by Regan Farr

Seniors are always so excited to graduate and move onto college, meet new people and experience bigger, better things. Many students rush their last year of high school because of this so called “senioritis.” Is college everything it is expected to be?

A graduate from the 2016 class Regan Bernardoni is attending Mississippi State University this fall. She was ecstatic when she received her acceptance letter to her dream school her senior year. “Mississippi State has been anything and everything I could have ever dreamed of. College has provided me countless opportunities to get involved in and around the community and it is amazing to be surrounded by individuals with the same drive to succeed,” Bernardoni said.  

Many college students claim college classes are a huge step from high school. The classes can be more enjoyable or less depending on a person’s work habits and motivation. “Classes are challenging because there is no one consistently reminding you to take your education seriously. The professors are involved in their own studies and teaching is just another aspect of what they are here at the University to accomplish. They care about the success of students, obviously, but they are not going to invest anymore time than you are willing to invest. It was really hard for to make the adjustment of 30 plus kids, which seems overwhelming in a high school classroom setting to a college lecture hall of 200 to 300 students. Honestly I miss high school because tests were scattered and the teachers typically scheduled lessons based on other teachers’ schedules, but at the University level you are expected to handle the workload of 16+ credit hours with a grace that is quite difficult to find,” Bernardoni explained.

Another 2016 graduate TJ Metcalfe plans on attending Penn State University next fall. Metcalf is enjoying college as well. “College, in my opinion, is a lot better than high school. You have so much more freedom to do what you want with your time. There is a lot more work but most of the time it doesn’t bother me because it directly affects my future. I miss how close everyone was in high school but in college there is still a sense of community. College is definitely a great place to find who you are and shape your life into what you want it to be,” he stated.

A 2016 graduate Emma Jozwiak is attending Towson University this fall. Jozwiak claims, “College is fun, but not what I expected.” Unlike Bernardoni whose experience has so far been fulfilling, Jozwiak has a hard time adjusting to such a different sense of community. “It’s weird going from a small town and knowing everyone to a city and pretty much not knowing anyone. I also miss football games and being able to play a high school sport, but I’m ready for a new adventure at Towson,” she explained.

“If you are given the opportunity to continue your education, take it. The number of things I have learned about the culture of the South and the Country as a whole has been one of my most treasured experiences. You are constantly around people who are apparently similar, but vividly different and those differences are so inspiring. It is overwhelming to have such much freedom because honestly, the world is yours,” said Bernardoni.