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college life

It’s that time of year again: spirit week! The Fontbonne Activities Board (FAB) is traditionally the host of fall spirit week, and this year’s theme is “Helium Havoc.” So take flight and get ready to be blown away by all the exciting events we have planned!
• Monday September 15, 7-10 p.m.: Request your favorite songs at Dueling Pianos
• Tuesday September 16, 7:15 p.m.: Show your STL pride at the Cardinals game (purchase tickets for only $15 in the business office)
• Wednesday September 17, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: Take home a souvenir from the balloon artist
• Wednesday September 17, 8:45 p.m.: Ride the bus from Fontbonne to Wild Country and dance the night away (sign up on FAB’s Facebook)
• Thursday September 18, 7 p.m.: Glow with your team of 8 in the Neon Volleyball tournament (sign up on FAB’s Facebook)
• Friday September 19, 7-9 p.m.: Support Griffin Nation at the Fontbonne booth at the Forest Park balloon glow
• Friday September 19, 10 p.m.: Wind down the night by watching Disney/Pixar’s Up in the Golden Meadow
• Saturday September 20, 12-6 p.m.: Watch the annual Balloon Race in Forest Park

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Well, this school year has definitely had its ups and downs. There were so many memorable moments, and I made lots of great friends. However, it was also very stressful moving away from home and keeping up with all my school work. I joined the honors program here, so I’ve had some harder classes, but I have definitely been challenged in a positive way. It was also great living in St. Louis this year – I got to try Ted Drewe’s ice cream, attend a Cardinals’ game, go to concerts, enjoy Forest Park, and do all sorts of fun stuff! There have been many exciting moments, but perhaps the best part of my first year of college was becoming a member of the third floor of St. Joseph’s Hall. Our floor is basically one big group of friends. We always eat lunch together and there is never enough room at the table, but we make room. We share each other’s clothes, food, joys, and troubles. If I’m ever having a bad day, I can always count on a member of the Third Floor Council to cheer me up. Yes, we have a council. I am truly going to miss my friends at Fontbonne over the summer. Three whole months without them?!?! Ah! Whatever will I do? Hopefully we will be able to stay in touch. Anyway, here is my number one piece of advice to any future freshmen: Make friends, and make good ones. No matter where you end up, there will always be people you can count on. Well, unless you move to like the Arctic circle or the outback or something. I’ve also compiled a list of a few other tips for surviving your freshman year:

1. Don’t procrastinate! Deadlines come sooner than you think, and you don’t want to be rushing to finish a paper at 3 in the morning the night before it’s due.

2. Read the syllabus! It is very important to know when your professor’s office hours are. I’m pretty sure I’ve had to schedule meetings with at least half of my professors, if not more. Although it can seem like a hassle, it is always a good idea to meet with them to ask questions about projects or papers. Not only will your assignments turn out better, but you will also rid yourself of additional stress and the professor will know you are a good student. The syllabus is also great for checking due dates. Like I said in #1, don’t procrastinate.

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Top Lessons I Learned in College (And Not from a Textbook)

1.)  You don’t need to transfer schools or move across the country to somewhere more beautiful or exciting in order to be happy. Happiness is right where you are, and finding it is all a matter of changing your perspective on where you’re at.

2.)  You also don’t need to be perfect to be happy or accepted. Your real friends will love you even if you wear five shirts in the winter, prefer running clothes over “normal people” clothes, go to bed without showering after practice (and show up that way the next morning to practice. Yeah…we do this…), and if you talk to yourself while you do your homework. This is true friendship, kids, and it’s a beautiful thing. So don’t even try making your life perfect all the time—it’s a waste of energy (much like showering can be when you’re really, really sleepy.).

3.)  It’s okay to get a C in a hard class that you worked your butt off in. It’s also okay to get a couple of 40% on tests in really hard classes as well. As my dad likes to point out, even when I do this badly, the sun still shines the next day, and my friends still like me (see above) and the teachers of those classes still offer to write me letters of recommendation for grad school anyway. I would rather get a C and learn the material than get an A by memorizing and regurgitating the information. Whether or not you’re able to apply your knowledge is key!

4.)  While you don’t need to be perfect, don’t totally let yourself go. Take care of yourself…whatever that means to you.

5.)  Go with your gut, even if it means going down a path you’re not sure about. Even if it means changing majors late in the game. Even if it means trying something new. Trust me…you won’t regret it!

6.)  Having alone time is vital, yes, but don’t spend your whole life alone in your room with a book. This blog post is proof that the best lessons we learn aren’t the ones in the massive, overpriced books we rent each semester. And also, who makes memories with their textbooks? When was the last time a calculus book made you laugh so hard you said, “Please stop or I’m going to throw up!”? Make it a point to spend as much time as possible with the people you love.  Again, you won’t regret it (unless one of your friends finally does make you laugh so hard you get sick. Then you might a little.)

7.)  Along the lines of regrets: remember that the things we regret most are the things we don’t do. So if you want something…make it happen!

8.)  And finally: you are so much stronger, bolder, tougher, smarter, capable, and awesome than you think you are. Don’t ever doubt it. And if you find yourself with people who make you doubt it…well…they’re probably not worth it.

In true Carly fashion, I will close this last, final blog with a quote, the same one that’s been posted on my door since I got here in August for arguably the most memorable school year of my life:

“But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”

-Jack Kerouac

Thanks for reading.

-Carly

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Working in college is a kind of debated topic. Some people say you should focus on school, that college is a big change in your life and you need to take it one step at a time. Others say you should work as much as you can. I think the answer is somewhere in the middle. When you’re a full time student, it is really hard to keep up your grades and work 30+ hours a week. But there is a lot to be said for working in college. Just be sure to keep it under 20 hours a week so you don’t get overwhelmed! I’ve had a job my entire Freshman year, and I’ve adjusted fine. Not only have I adjusted to both college, living away from home, and working, but I have actual benefitted from these changes. All of these changes, including work, have made me a more mature and confident lady. While all of these things have their benefits, I’m focusing on working today. Maybe I’ll blog about college classes and living on my own later. Anyway, I’ve compiled a list of the perks of working in college below:

It can help you make friends outside of school. Sometimes being around all the same people at school can drive you crazy, and spending time with different people at work allows you to still be social, but is kind of a relief at the same time.

Another perk is the money of course! College students can always use a little extra spending money, and many of us save up for grad school, paying off loans, or travelling abroad. Paying for things on your own gives you a sense of pride and accomplishment and gives you opportunities. Of course, studying or traveling abroad is the biggest opportunity, but you also have opportunities to do little things like go to the movies, go to concerts, or see plays. These things are great stress relievers too! College can be stressful, and while adding work to your endless To Do List may seem like a bad idea, if you work 20 hours or less, you won’t be too overwhelmed and you can actually afford to go places that will relieve the stress of school!

Working also builds up your resume. You can choose to work somewhere related to your major, which will definitely look good to future employers! But even if you work somewhere completely unrelated to your major, it will still look good. Employers are always looking for well-rounded people, and if you’ve worked in a variety of places, then you still make an excellent candidate. So no matter where you work, it looks good :)

You can learn a lot about yourself from working at different places. What you like, what you dislike, how you react to different people and situations. It’s a learning experience in itself!

Welp, that’s all I’ve got for now. If anyone has any other perks they’d like to share, let me know! Comments are always appreciated.

Peace out, Fonties and Future Fonties!

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How to stay healthy while on Campus

by Alumni Posts April 9, 2014

This topic is perfect for me right now. I’ve recently gained so much weight since I moved on campus and let me tell you, it is not pretty at all. My boyfriend kept trying to get me to work out and eat healthy, but it was so hard and I just kept getting bigger and […]

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“Hindsight is Vibrant, Reality: Rarely Lit”

by Alumni Posts February 18, 2014

So maybe you think that since I’m a senior, with almost 4 years of college life behind me, I have it all figured out. Not really. I’m just making it up as I go. But I can offer some advice based on my past experiences, good and bad.  All things considered, looking back now – […]

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Music to My Ears

by Deanna February 6, 2014

I have never met a person who’s just like “You know, I really hate music. Can’t stand listening to it!” Everyone loves some kind of music! For me, music is almost always a constant. At work we have it on in the store, and in the kitchen. I have it on in my car (often […]

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The freshman struggle

by Alumni Posts January 30, 2014

Freshman year. Unknown teachers, book fees, roommate issues, and more. Have you ever written a paper and felt like you got an A but your instructor thought otherwise? This has happened to me plenty of times. The worst part is that the instructor won’t even let you redo the paper even after your countless hours […]

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The Move-In

by Alumni Posts November 25, 2013

I’ve lived here about three weeks now, and I suppose I’ve gotten to know the apartment pretty well at this point. Perks of living in a really old building: -Lots of closet space -Tall ceilings -French details on the walls, trim, doors, framework. -Mosaic tile in the hallways -Hardwood floors Not-so-perky things: -Squeaky EVERYTHING. Floors, […]

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College “Needs”

by Kristen November 14, 2013

As a high school student, I began preparing for my move to college very early. Like, a-year-in-advance-making-grocery-lists kind of early.  Now that I’ve been at school for a few years, I have determined which of my possessions are most vital to my existence as a college student.  If you are reading this post, and you […]

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Students writing for Real Life at Fontbonne are paid a small fee for each post by the university.