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Sophomore year is weird.  No longer a freshman, but not quite an upperclassman. You’re in an awkward in between stage of being a newbie at school and being the big man (or woman!) on campus. Sophomore year is when things start changing. People go abroad. They choose a major. They switch their major. Then they switch their major again. People find new friends. People transfer. Things change.

By sophomore year people have usually found their place; with their friends, with their surroundings, they’ve figured out why they are where they are. But that might be different from what you thought it would be last year.  Freshman year you’ve found your friends and everything is great and you can’t believe you’re in college. Everyone in your dorm is your best friend and its so great having all of your friends down the hall. And summer rolls around and you can’t wait to come back in August and be with your friends.

But when sophomore year arrives, you all live in different dorms, and everything just seems different. You can’t run down the hall and ask to borrow your friend’s shirt because she lives across campus. You now have one friend in Rome this semester, the other in Ireland, and even a few in Spain! Everyone is in different places, and it just feels different. Because it is different.  Things have changed.

Change is weird. Right when you get used to things, they change. Right when you get your dorm room set up the way you want, its time to pack up for the summer. Right when you’ve found a solid group of friends, its time to leave. Right when you think you’ve finally got this whole college thing figured out, the year is over and everything will be different when you get back.

Sophomore year things might not go as planned. Freshman year you’ve got such high hopes for sophomore year now that you know the “ins and outs” of school and partying and friends and everything that comes with college. But when you actually get to sophomore year, if things aren’t exactly how you thought they would be, it can be discouraging. Freshman year you have no idea what college holds for you, because everything is new. But sophomore year you can plan out, you know what college is like and you know what to expect. So when things aren’t what you thought they’d be, you think sophomore year is out to get you. 

For my friends and me, sophomore year definitely didn’t start off how we wanted. Trouble, stress, and a lot of tears; sophomore year was the farthest thing from what we wanted it to be. After this, everything seemed horrible, leaving us hoping that this semester would be the worst we’d ever experience, because we weren’t sure how things could get any worse. Because things started off on a bad note, we never took notice of all the good things that happened, because the bad things overshadowed them.

Maybe you’re lucky, and this semester was just another one for the books. But for the most part, I think sophomore year is a slump for a lot of college students. Even though majors have been chosen, nobody actually knows what they want to do with those degrees afte college. You’ve learned how to handle this whole college thing, but that doesn’t mean everything is going to go your way. Sophomore year is a year of change. Friends change, majors change, everything changes. But not all of the changes have to be bad. Friends change, and you might have found your absolute best friend without whom you now can’t imagine life. You may have chosen a new major and couldn’t be happier about it. Not all the changes are bad, so keep your head up, we’ll all be out of the slump soon enough.   

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Therese Burke is a Saint Mary’s College Contributor to Her Campus Notre Dame.

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Therese Burke

Saint Mary's

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