One more semester starts at Utah State University Eastern and this time residence life has its biggest number of on-campus students since Director of Housing, Jeff Spears, got the position. The constant advertisement, recruitment and efforts from the institution to keep as many upper-division students as possible ended up raising the number on the student body at USU Eastern in Price, compared to last year. With the new soccer field finally inaugurated, new majors incorporated and three new health professions program added (medical laboratory technician, pharmacy technician and surgery technician), USUE keeps growing at an amazing rate, providing more educational options for Carbon County and surrounding areas.
As a junior, I did not notice how the beginning of fall 2018 is similar to any other in the past. New people arrive, old people come back and the environment on campus creates more joy, life and sometimes frenzy. Freshmen, especially those not used to college, tend to start either extremely focused on what is now a new stage of their academic life or, on the other extreme, tremendously excited for the parties to come, the people to meet and the adventures to live. As a student that has been part of athletics, leadership and employment within the university, I have felt both extremes. Allow me to talk a little bit about it.
For me, spring was usually the time to be excited for a good time rather than hours of study in the library. I always tried to set aside some time for my classes; after all, that’s why we are all here. However, hanging out with friends, driving up north for events or just attending parties were usually priorities. As I see it, it is completely normal for any college student as long as they are responsible and are aware of the consequences of any decision they make. That was my thinking, at least.
I did have fun and I did well in classes, just not as well as I could have. In my perspective that was important though, because college is definitely a place to not only grow academically, but also as a person, including character and social skills. And both of these were mainly acquired by me outside of the classroom.
On the other hand, after a few semesters I felt more like setting my classes as priorities. The fun side of college was still there, just not as present. And what I realize is that balance, as obvious as it might sound, is the key for a worthwhile experience. There are even a few classes that try to teach us how to get the most out your time. And from my experience, after four semesters at USUE, balancing your academic life with fun and joy in college is key to grow and graduate college prepared for life.
Regardless, if one is a freshman, sophomore or otherwise, one should still remember to go out, have fun and meet new people. Getting the most out of college means growing up to be a responsible adult, but also creating memories and starting to build a life that one will be proud of when looking back on the experience. After all, once we graduate, who knows how life is going to be? Enjoy it now, but responsibly.