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Some Misconceptions of College

It is easy to idealize college in a way that it will be the best few years of your life. And books, movies, and television shows certainly do not seem to say otherwise, portraying college years as a time full of fun, freedom, and adventure. There are a few misconceptions, however, to be cleared up. 

First and foremost, thanks to Hollywood cinema, it is a common expectation that you instantly find the most perfect group of friends you spend the next four years with. But the reality is that finding those close, long-lasting friendships, especially during freshman year when people are still adjusting, is often a difficult process.  Partying or meeting new people in college may be relatively straightforward, but the process of really connecting with someone beyond simple small talk – beyond “what is your name / where are you from / what is your major” – takes time, patience, and genuine effort.

Another misconception is that everything will be different, better in college. You will be different, better. But the truth is that college cannot make you a different, better version of yourself unless you put in the effort. No matter where you go, if you do not face your problems head-on and try to fix them, those problems will always be with you.

There are the people who love college right off the bat – love the campus, the people, simply everything – and they are lucky. But there are also the people who simply do not – the people who need more time to adjust, who move back home or transfer after a year or two because their dreams are more viable elsewhere – and that is completely okay.

Dede Ahn

UCSB '20

Dede is a first year English major at UCSB. 
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