Where am I going to study? Should I take notes on my computer? Which desk drawer should I put my highlighters in? Do I workout in the morning or at night? OH GOSH, WHICH SEAT DO I WANT?
It didn’t occur to me when I decided to go to ICO last fall that I would have to “get the hang of it.” When uprooting your life to come live in a new city, take new classes at a new school with new professors, there is certainly a lot to think about. From the second I moved into the Residential Complex last week, I have been making mini decisions that will effect the next year of my life.
Home Sweet Home. I am definitely a nester by nature. I unpacked and set up my room as quickly as I could because I couldn’t wait for it to feel more homey. While unpacking I had to think about things like finding a place for school supplies, underwear, extra towels and picture frames. It’s not like there’s a lack of storage space in the RC, I just had to ask myself, “Am I sure this is where I want to put this for the next nine months?” I mean, I know I can always change it’s spot, but I guess I like being dramatic.
Seat Envy. Speaking of dramatic, is there a harder decision than picking out your lecture seat? There are pros and cons to being upfront and way back in the back. I felt like the seat you pick on the first day says something about you, both to your fellow classmates and to your professor. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to say yet, so I chose a seat in the middle. (Close enough to pay attention but far enough away that I can still text…)
Here’s my experience with financial aid thus far: you click a few buttons, give a little personal information and voila…they give you money. Easiest $55k anyone has ever made. However, as the saying goes, if it’s too good to be true, it probably is.
I’m maybe the dumbest person I know financially. I didn’t understand interest until the age of 20, and I’m still shaky on what the term “tax deductible” means. The most experience I have with bills is setting up an automatic online payment for my apartment rent. In college, I lost my debit card probably five times and often got letters from the bank that did not say “Great job with your spending this month!” In fact, usually just the opposite.
So, the question is, why on earth would the government give any amount of money to a person like me? The answer is kind of flattering. They think I’m an investment! Having more eye docs all over the country is worth it to them to give serious coin to a bunch of 20-somethings. If our education is a new house, FAFSA is our mortgage.
The details of federal aid are much more daunting. Maybe not to everyone, but certainly to me. I’ve vowed to be done burying my head in the sand; from here on out I’m going to TRY to understand my financial aid better because I don’t want trouble down the road. The other day my mom was helping me break down the components of my reward and I could not understand the concept of work study. A solid twenty minutes and a lame metaphor later, I finally got it. (Turns out it’s not money in your pocket for shopping, as I had originally thought.)
It was a mere three weeks ago that I donned a black cap and gown and walked across the stage to receive my bachelor’s degree in health science from Purdue University. After the ceremony, unlike most of my friends who were going off to work salaried jobs in various parts of the country, I didn’t have those post-grad blues. While my degree represented everything I had worked for as an undergrad, I knew it also represented the new journey I’m starting as part of ICO’s class of 2018!
I think I speak for everyone in my entering class when I say IS IT AUGUST 6 YET?! I don’t mean to sound ungrateful for summer. I know I really should relish in these rare three months of free time with no classes and no responsibility, but I can’t help but look ahead to this fall when all the madness begins. No, I’m obviously not PUMPED to stay up until 3 a.m. cramming exam material or waking up early for lectures or being forever lost in biochemistry (again), but think of all the stuff there is to be excited about: meeting new people, the RC, being in clinic, THE CITY.
But okay. I can’t get ahead of myself. It’s only the beginning of the summer. I’m lucky enough to be incredibly free this summer (minus the few shifts a week I picked up at my old retail job), so that raises the question: What am I going to do fill the remaining two months until I move in?
To my fellow classmates who are also wondering this, here are my tips on how to fill your summer with worthwhile activities while anxiously awaiting the next 4 years of your life.