Teenage Author stuck in Reality... Well, I probably learned more than ten things but they have escaped my eighteen year old memory at time of posting so therefore we will leave it at ten! :P
Number 1: You will need to take out a loan...for just your books alone.
First semester, I spent over three hundred dollars on my textbooks that I mostly purchased from my campus bookstore, who claim that they will buyback your books for 50% purchasing price. LIES, I tell you. The fine print on that claim says the following: IF WE DECIDE WE ARE GETTING NEW EDITIONS, THEN YOU CANNOT SELL BACK YOUR BOOKS TO US. Therfore, second semester I smartened up and took advantage of a life-saving site called Chegg.com I saved about two hundred plus dollars and for every dollar spent renting books on Chegg, they plant a tree wherever you choose. Plus, shipping the books back to them is absolutely free. :D
Number 2: Shower Shoes are a MUST.
You would think living in the same building with other girls and ruling boys out would mean a clean facility. You would be wrong. Most girls that I lived with were in fact slobs. I won't mention what most of them left in the shower. It's too gross to speak of.
Number 3: Take advantage of your Unlimited meal plan.
First semester, I cashed many bonds just to pay for my groceries and most of the things I bought were snacks to have in my room because munchies hit at anytime when your in college. I mean, it could it be 3 am and you suddenly want a Subway footlong( I mainly mention it because I am craving one now). So, second semester, I saved lots of money by hoarding cookies from the cafeteria when I went to lunch and saving them for late at night. When you're in college, saving money means so much more to you!
Number 4: Dorm decor can and will get expensive.
Especially when you suddenly have a whole dorm room to yourself, which was what happened in my case. I had wanted to cover both of the prison-like walls with posters and was going to spend fifty plus dollars on posters of celebrities who aren't gonna help me get through college at all. So, then I had a revelation. I could blow up pictures of my favorite skater or my family aka the people who support me and my college journey and hang them up. Photo posters at my local Wal-mart only cost 7.50* a piece. *price includes tax. On those long nights when I felt like quitting, I just looked up to see Geniveve's beautiful face or into the eyes of my hero and friend, Ryan Sheckler and knew they wouldn't want me to give up. Surround yourself with positive and that is what your life will become. :)
Number 5: Take advantage of work on campus like Work Study.
I found the perfect job on campus, but not until the last month of school. I work at my campus library. I found out why they call it work study too. I was getting paid to work for the library, and in the process I was studying and doing homework. It seriously is the perfect job and I am so blessed to have gotten it.
Number 6: Use the library
Instead of investing in a wireless printer, take advantage of the library. Printing is free and they have coffee plus the walk to the library will get you out of your dorm and give you a little exercise and fresh air, both of which are beneficial to a hard-working college student. :)
Number 7: Make friends with a car.
No, no. What I meant was make friends with someone who has a car. Now, I know you're thinking you mean use them for their car. Wrong. Actually, make friends with someone and then two weeks into the friendship they may mention they have a working vehicle, at which time you should set out to make them your best friend. Haha. No. Make friends for them and see their car as an added friendship bonus. :)
Number 8: If you don't understand the material, get help.
You would think since I decided to attend Saint Leo I would have taken advantage of the fact that professors are open to helping you get better grades. No, I did not. Nor did I take advantage of the free tutoring in the LRC or Learning Resource Center. It will be one of my main goals this fall and next spring, for sure. :) I really want to make the dean's list.
Number 9: People are fickle
Going to college, I was convinced that people would act mature and the guys would be grown up and ready to act like men. I was completely wrong. Most of the girls I met were catty and easily jealous, and just like in high school were bftf(best friends to face). It was very upsetting and I was deep in prayer most of first semester because I was convinced Saint Leo was the devil's melting pot. I am still pretty sure it is, but God prevailed and second semester, I was blessed with true friends that supported me as a writer and with the guys I liked. Oh, speaking of guys. The guys at Saint Leo are Dateable. Meaning you are able to date them once and then that's it. Most of them still act like little boys( meaning the L word is death to them and such) so they are not yet able to have a committed relationship. Your best way to succeed in college is to look but don't touch. Getting that diploma and establishing yourself in your career is more important because once you do that, love will follow. Now I'm not saying you can't find love in college, some people do. Love will find you when your time is right, but sometimes it needs a little push or an address to get to where you are. :)
Number Ten: Study!
I didn't study for a lot of my tests and it showed in the grades I got. I didn't study because like a typical freshman, I saw college as a new social experience first then an academic experience. Flip those around and you will surely succeed in college!
I wish all incoming college freshman the best of luck whether you attend Saint Leo or what have you. :)
Lastly, I have a note for Saint Leo:
Dear Saint Leo,
I miss you dearly(mostly for your fortune cookie fortunes) but you will never compete with my mother's cooking.
Your loyal student,
Love Times Infinity,
May God Bless You!
~Just Keep Swimming~