People truly do not realize how much college changes them. I never thought I would ever go away to school and I honestly thought if I did that I would not have a good experience and I was terrified of losing my friends. I am here to say that I have lost some but others are still near and dear to my heart.
Going away to school was of course nerve-wracking at first. I did not know what to expect at all and I knew no one here in Charleston. I soon made friends very quickly and I changed into a whole new person. I have a whole new outlook on life.
The first weekend I returned back home, I was ready to go back to Eastern that night. I realized how small-minded people were back home and I was able to see through people.
One thing I have noticed about college changing me is that I have become much more independent. I do not rely on anyone hardly any more to do anything for me. I have learned to take care of myself and be an adult.
I also realize that people here at college do not judge like others do back home. They are supportive and welcoming of everyone here and you can fit in with anyone.
When I return home to visit family and friends, I am reminded of how different people are. They are very cold, judgmental and downright rude. It makes me want to come back to school because I can be myself here and I do not have to put up with other people criticizing me for being who I am and for living my life the way I want to.
I want people to realize that although college can be terrifying at first, especially if you know no one there in the beginning, but you will very quickly make friends and it will become home here.
I consider Eastern to be more home to me than I do my own hometown. That may sound bad to say but I just feel much more comfortable here.
College is not for everyone but I can assure you that you do not have to reconsider it just because of the fear of not knowing anyone. You will eventually fit in, everything will be OK and you will soon realize faster than anything else that there is a whole other world out there besides the small hometowns we come from.
Andrew Paisley is a junior journalism major. He can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]