Now that spring is here and it's finally warming up, I pass by more and more campus tour groups on my way to classes. Every time I see them, I scan the fresh faces of those high schoolers accompanied by their parents and I want to yell, "NO! DON'T DO IT! IT'S A TRAP! IT MAY LOOK BIG AND PRETTY AND EXCITING BUT IT'S A TRAP! DO SOMETHING MEANINGFUL AND FULFILLING WITH YOUR YOUTH WHILE YOU STILL CAN!"
But then I think, who am I to disturb the hopes of those kids like that? When I was in their position three or four years ago, I was in excited awe when I first visited campus. I had all these fantasies and ideas about what being in college would be like. There were so many possibilities! I felt like a new life awaited me here. And then I got here... and I was disappointed in a number of aspects. But even though these haven't been "the best years of my life" like people always said they would be, I have grown so much as a person that I hardly even recognize my highschool self when I think about her. Yeah, the disappoints and frustrations came, but they came to me in my own time. Those were my own experiences that I needed to have. And these kids need to have their own too.
So welcome, high schoolers. Prospective freshmen. Maybe I will see you around next year. Just know that if you ever feel disillusioned, angry, or afraid because college isn't what you'd hoped it would be, know that there are literally thousands of us around you on this campus who have felt the same way.