College issue

What Outgoing Seniors Are Afraid Of

By Ava DePersio

   College can be exciting, but it can also make many incoming college students have fears about what to expect. Incoming college students have to adjust to a new environment and there may be several unknowns before going to college. “[My fear is that] I will not have any friends… I am concerned because I do not know anyone going to my college, so If I get there and do not have friends it will be sad,” said a Ponte Vedra High School (PVHS) senior. Several other PVHS seniors said that their biggest college fear is not making any friends. This may be because they do not know anyone going to their university. Not knowing how to make friends in a big atmosphere like college may also be a reason they are worried. A current college freshman at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) Belle Benson was also afraid of making friends since she was going to a college out of state, and she did not know many people going to her school. Benson realized once she got to college that she did not need to worry about not making any friends and explained how she got over her fear. “Talk to everyone, [everyone] is all in the same type of situation… [try] to get involved, and put yourself out there.” 

   Having a roommate and living in a new environment is part of the college experience, and having a roommate that a person does not know may make some afraid. A PVHS senior explained, “I am afraid of living with strangers, and not fitting in [with my roommate and their personality.]” Another PVHS senior stated, “I am worried I will get a roommate that I do not like.” That may be a fear for several incoming college students because they will have to live with their roommate for several months, and living with someone that they do not like would cause there to be severe tension between them. Living in a new environment such as a dorm may also cause worry. “I am afraid I will get locked out of my dorm room… [ I do not know] what I would do then,” said a PVHS senior. 

“I am afraid of living with strangers, and not fitting in [with my roommate and their personality.]”

   Some have formed specific fears about college life. “[I am fearful] of having there be a real fire, and thinking that it is fake and not do anything,” said a PVHS senior. Some may be fearful about their health, since they will be surrounded by several other people. A PVHS senior said, “I am scared that I will get sick…I am a big germaphobe and there will be thousands of people there.” Questionable college dining hall food may also make some fearful. PVHS senior Brenda Rizzuto explained, “[I am afraid of] having a really bad dining hall, and [spending money on] a big dining hall meal plan and [the food] being disgusting.” Doing daily tasks in a new environment may scare incoming college students, because they may not be comfortable doing their daily tasks in that environment with several people around. “What if I [am doing my laundry] and [drop] my laundry on the floor… that is terrifying,” stated a PVHS senior. Benson was worried about, “Water pressure in the shower… that it would be bad and have to wait forever for [the] …conditioner to wash out”

   College is where incoming students go to learn and explore their various interests. Keeping up with college studies may be stressful. “I am worried that it will be super challenging… I am scared of failing,” explained a PVHS senior. Karly Mindnich graduated from college at the University of South Florida (USF), and was also worried about being able to keep up with her studies when she first started school. Mindnich first went to Georgetown College in Kentucky on a lacrosse scholarship, and explained that being a college athlete while also being a full-time student was difficult. “I was worried if I would get into nursing school while also being a college athlete… balancing being in a sorority, academics and sports… [I was] scared it would not work out.” Mindnich’s advice would be to, “Never compare experiences to anyone else’s…try to see the best in every situation… do not be afraid of the unknown, and [know that] everything happens for a reason.” 

   Benson and Mindnich both explained that once they got to college and got involved through various clubs and other events, they realized that their fears were not worth worrying about. Many have fears about college, but once they experience college, it could allow them to face their fears and not be as afraid. 

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