Monthly Archives: October 2012

Hey, girl I don’t know~

When I finally started my first semester at South Alabama, I had enough credits to count as a junior.  Thus, I was finally at the point in my college career where I had to start making decisions about what I would be doing after college.  Would I start thinking about graduate school, or would I start preparing for the job search?  Really, you should already be thinking about both before now and getting ready through jobs, community service, and other organizations.  However, it probably isn’t until your junior or senior year that it really hits you that life is about to change for you soon and you need to be ready for it.

The first place I turned to for help was my college adviser.  I had decided based on research, that really getting a higher level degree in English would probably be a waste of time, unless I wanted to become a college professor.  Most jobs that I was interested in are based upon experience, so after graduation I wanted to get an entry level job and start building up from there.  However, I didn’t know what the process I needed to take to really get prepared for the job search; I had only had part-time/seasonal and tutoring jobs up to that point and didn’t know what I would need to do for a career.  Unfortunately for me, my adviser couldn’t really help since she had taken the graduate school route.  I soon found my other English professors I turned to for help also couldn’t help for a similar reason; they didn’t have much experience outside of academia.  All they could really do was act as a reference for me and give suggestions about graduate school (pretty much all of my professors, English or otherwise, pressured me into going that route.  Honestly, now that I’ve had some time out of college, I’m seriously reconsidering it).

But, at the time, I was burnt out from school and thought going for the job was the better option, so I really felt frustrated that I wasn’t finding help in the English department.  Since then, I’ve learned that a great place to turn to for help is the career center; the career center for your school has advisers that can give you specific job seeking help and will have conferences and workshops that provide resume help and networking opportunities.  The place I turned to, however, wound up being the communication department, and that will be the topic of my next post.

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Nothing’s over, nothing’s over~

So, after the awful year that was 2009, things started to work out for me again.  Thanks to the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008, my dad was able to use his GI Bill to help cover the cost of my education (it only works for a state school that considers you in-State), and I was finally able to receive Federal student loans to cover the rest of the costs.

I wound up transferring from the community college to a school just up the street from SHC – South Alabama.  I had only been to the campus once while going to Spring Hill (my freshman class went to a play that was held at South), so I didn’t really know what to expect.  I wanted to stay in Mobile though, since I had such a great experience there so far and still had friends at SHC.  Also, South counted Gulf Coast residents as in-State, which was a plus.  Unfortunately, since most of my credits transferred over from another four year school, I was unable to receive any sort of scholarship; really, your best bet on getting a good scholarship seems to be when you first apply for a four year college or university as a freshman, or if you are transferring in from a community college.  They don’t seem to want to help you out if you didn’t pick them first.  Luckily, though, all of my credits transferred, which means I wasn’t held back too much from my year outside of regular school.  In fact, I wound up only graduating a semester late in the end.

Since I transferred in the middle of the school year, I was also worried over whether or not I would get a dorm.  Luckily, when I went to the transfer orientation, when we checked with housing there was a spot available from a student who had transferred out that semester.  It was also in the dorm type I wanted to get into – Beta.  Beta dorms were set up basically like apartments and had their own kitchen, which was awesome because at the time juniors and seniors at South didn’t have to have a meal plan!  They were also cheaper because four people shared the dorm instead of the usual one or two…although, at the same time, that was also kind of a downside.  I was a bit anxious about transferring in to a dorm with three strangers who had already gotten used to living with one another for half a year, but I wound up lucking out since all three were really great.

The other thing I was worried about was adjusting to the new school, finding my way around campus, and whether or not the classes would be as great as they were at SHC.  I had such a wonderful experience at Spring Hill that I was afraid my time at South would pale in comparison.  I also had to make entirely new friends and adjust to a bigger campus with more students.  However, even though the campus was larger, it did not take me very long to adjust and learn to find my way around.  I also wound up with great professors that led interesting classes that taught me a lot, and had many interesting discussions in and out of class.    Overall, I had such a great experience at South that I’m glad I wound up there and that it’s now my alma mater.  I think I experienced a lot of growth at South, and while I will never regret my experience at Spring Hill (other than the crippling students loans that I’m currently struggling to pay), I definitely am not disappointed that I finished school at South.

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Never giving up all my life~

When life doesn’t go the way you want it to, it really sucks.  And it can be really hard to recover from it.  I’ve had many things in my life now that have caused me great stress and/or disappointment.  Each time, at first I get upset and wonder why, even with all my hard work and responsible nature, I have to go through it.  However, at the same time, now I appreciate the fact I have gone through such difficult times and struggles.  I think as a result I am better equipped to deal with the hard times than people who haven’t gone through the experience.  I also think I am a better person as a result and can better help others when they go through similar situations.

Now when I get stuck with a difficult situation, I give myself a day or so to feel upset.  Then, I start figuring out what I need to do to move past it.  I start looking for new options or figure out a solution to whatever problem it is instead of sitting around and feeling sorry for myself.  I also don’t get quite as upset as I did in the past and come back from the disappointment faster.  I think overall my attitude toward life’s problems tends to be more positive, and that’s a good thing.

I’m actually writing through this as I’m going through another one of life’s struggles (I may write about it in a later post once I get to post-graduate life and my personal experience with the job search), and although I’ve had a pretty terrible day I feel a lot more calm than I have in past tough situations.  This post ends the series of “Keep Your Head Down” posts and provides my viewpoint of what I’ve gained through the struggles I went through for that year and a half.  I guess the take away point matches the title, “Never giving up all my life” – a random English line from Tohoshinki’s song “Android.”  Although I, or you, will go through many struggles in life, you keep rolling with the punches and deal with it.  Dwelling on how you wish things could have been will not get you past the situation; the most you can do is figure out a new solution of how to reach your goals.

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Filed under Sophomore year