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Things I, a Young Woman, Wished She Learned in School

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at CNU chapter.

            I’ve been in college for about 6 months now, and I’m starting to realize all these adult tasks I was never prepared for are beginning to pop up. Of course, I could go running straight to my parents and they’d be there to help me, but what I don’t understand is why I wasn’t prepared by anyone for things like filing taxes, opening an insurance policy, or putting the title of a car in my name. There are so many things from high school that I haven’t used for years, so why can’t those spaces in the curriculum be filled with more useful things?

            With tax season upon us and quickly waning, I’ve been asking myself “Do I need to pay taxes?”. Sure, I’ve been working on campus occasionally, but I’ve probably made less than a few hundred dollars. So, does that really count when it comes to filing taxes? These are things I have absolutely no idea about, as they weren’t touched on during my public-school education or even by my parents. Because for some reason no one saw it as important enough task to teach a young woman about to enter and navigate the real world on her own. So here I am, left scouring the internet and asking random friends and family members what I’m supposed to do, with very little luck so far.

            Next on my long list of adult problems, I have no idea how to put the title of a car into my name. Over winter break my maternal grandparents moved into assisted living and my Nana gifted me her car, with only 30,000 miles on it. So now I’m responsible for the title, registration, and insurance of an 18-year-old car. While I’m extremely grateful for this car as I could have never afforded it on my own, I’m a bit lost on the upkeep of it. From what I read online at the DMV, I need to have car insurance on my car to be able to switch the title into my name. But the insurance company is telling me I need to have the title in my name before I can open a policy. So here I am stuck in some endless loop with no idea where to go from here.

            Lastly, I’m left with the issue of actually understanding an insurance policy for a car. For the past 19 years of my life, I’ve been car-less and had all my insurance related issues sorted out by my Mom. Now, I need to open a car insurance policy and pay for it. And while I could have been taught this instead of sitting through Pre-Calc Trig in high school, I’m left here trying to make sense of deductibles, premiums, and liabilities.

While this is basically an article that consists of me complaining about the things I don’t understand, the main point behind this is to point out the things my public school education lacks. I know that realistically, public schools will never be able to prepare us for everything important in life, but as someone who hasn’t exercised her knowledge about the area of a triangle since the ninth grade, I’d like to see more important concepts incorporated into our K-12 education.

Allison is a Junior at Christopher Newport University, studying Psychology and Leadership Studies. She enjoys reading, writing poetry, and listening to Alt Rock music. Find her on insta @allibryan