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College has been nothing but a rollercoaster for me. I took a huge leap of faith in 2019 when I committed to UNH because I am from the west coast. Now, I am officially graduated. Over the past two years, I have learned so much about the world and myself. College has been full of good times and bad, but I have chosen to reflect on everything in a positive light. Everything is a learning moment in my mind.

One of the most valuable lessons I have learned is that no one should ever settle. I changed who I was and settled with being unhappy with the people I surrounded myself with for an entire year. It took drastic change for me to realize that I was the worst version of myself. This year I did not settle. I found new people that value who I really am and have created lifelong friendships that I wouldn’t trade the world for. I have found that settling leads to a lot of regret and stress for me, and I don’t want my life to be full of either of those traits. No one should ever settle for less than they truly deserve.

Growing up, the adults around me always told me I could be anything I wanted to be in life, but there always felt like there was a little hidden message. Everyone pictured me as a doctor, lawyer, engineer, etc. because I had a knack for those things. When I told my extended family that I was going to school for Human Development and Family Studies, they were skeptical. They made me question what I really wanted for my future. Never let anyone choose your path for you. Only you know what your path looks like. For me, there is nothing more gratifying than helping people become the best versions of who they want to be.

The last thing I learned is to never take advantage of the time you have in college. It has taken me two years to graduate with my bachelor’s, and I had to say a lot of tough goodbyes because I am moving back to the west coast for now. While all my friends are coming back for another couple years, I am leaving. I spent an entire year being unhappy and stressed out to the point where I barely enjoyed my first year of college. Never take the time you have for granted because it will fly by before you even know it.

College will not always be easy, but it is so incredibly worth it. I have made some of my best friends here. I found my path in life and what I want to spend my life doing. Nothing lasts forever, and you always have the power to make a change. There will always be good times and bad, just remember that.

I’m a Junior at UNH. My major is Human Development and Family Studies with a focus on family support.
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