Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

My Attachment to Academic Success and Being a Student

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Mass Amherst chapter.

Because I’ll be going abroad next semester, the end of this semester feels more like the end of junior year to me. This might simply be because I won’t physically be on campus next semester and I am looking forward to taking lots of fun electives. Anyways, this feels like my last semester before senior year, and after senior year comes life after college.

For as long as I can remember, I have done well in school. I have been praised for it all my life and I think it’s become something so attached to my identity that the thought of this part of my life ending soon is actually terrifying. Aside from other factors, I think this might have something to do with the fact that I was in an academically rigorous environment for my most formative years. I would get so worked up about my grades and I remember my mom telling me to try to relax a bit, but by that point, I didn’t even know how I could possibly do that when it came to school. 

Not only does it feel like I am losing a part of myself, but I am also scared of going into the “real world.” I’ve talked about this with some of my friends and I think it’s safe to say this experience of mine is not unique. For those of us who have always set such high expectations of ourselves — sometimes in ways that may not have been healthy — when it comes to school, the thought of not being a student anymore is incomprehensible. At this point in my life, I have definitely gotten a better understanding of what my limits are and how far I should push myself, but sometimes, I find myself falling back into my old habits.

I think a lot of these feelings for me are especially heightened after going through quarantine and living during this current pandemic. After taking time to reflect a lot more on what I want to do with my life and how I want to spend it in a worthwhile way, I realized I am just not ready for the 9-5 life. I know a lot of people say that the 9-5 life is not the only path, but if we are being honest, when having a stable income is an end goal and you don’t have wealth to fall back on from family, the 9-5 life is the most stable path. 

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about how time seems to pass by so quickly. I feel like the older I get, the more I want it all to slow down. It’s funny though because I remember being 12 years old looking forward to being 18. I really used to think being 18 was so old and mature. Now, I am 20 and still feel like I’m 17 sometimes. How does that work? 

I think the only thing left for me to do at this point is to learn how to worry less about the future and check in with myself more often to make sure that I am going down the path that makes me the happiest. At the end of the day (and as corny as it may sound),I truly want the most out of everything!

Can’t get enough of HC UMass Amherst? Be sure to follow us on Instagram, listen to us on Spotify, like us on Facebook, and read our latest Tweets!

Genesis Medina

U Mass Amherst '23

Genesis Medina is a junior double majoring in Public Health Sciences and Psychology. She likes to read, watch movies, and spend time with her friends and family.