Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at West Chester chapter.

It’s my sophomore year of college. I live in the same incredibly old dorm I did last year (sorry Killinger!) and I have the same friends I go to the dining hall every night with. It should feel the same, yet this year while walking to class, I can’t find any of my campus celebrities. Instead, I see people who are so obviously freshmen just looking at them makes me feel like I need a hat to hide my gray hairs. I had no idea that freshman year glow was a real thing, but looking at their faces is like being smacked in the face by a bright beam of light. You just can’t miss it.

There’s this kind of invincibility that comes with being a freshman. Staying out till two am every night as soon as Thursday hits is so easy that you kinda have to do it every single weekend. Not even the cold can stop a girl who just started college from making her way to some gross and oddly wet basement. Coming to college for the first time is just so many things. It’s scary and you will definitely cry for the whole first week and yes, communal bathrooms are kinda really awful. But then there’s the part where you don’t have to beg your dad to let you out of the house once it gets dark or wear a hoodie over what is most definitely a top that would make your mother scream and you spend hours doing god knows what with people who make you feel like failing an exam really isn’t that bad….the world is suddenly so bright and you can’t help but feel like you’re glowing with it. There’s this new world that’s yours, it’s yours to take and fill and be a part of. And now that I see all these girls, who are glowing so bright I feel like it might burn me, I can’t help but feel the lack of my own. 

Since arriving at my very own personal shoe box, I keep having to remind myself “It’s real!” College is a real thing that I’m actually in. It isn’t just a nine month sleepover with my best friend. It’s this place where you actually grow and change and, if I’m honest, go to be reborn. I know that sounds cliche, but I can actually feel the difference in who I was when I started college last fall, compared to me now, who already knows which buildings my classes are in. 

Sophomore year is already so different from freshman year. I don’t understand how I can feel so confident yet so lost at the same time. I know to never ever let my back touch the communal shower wall while I’m washing my hair and I know what frats to stay far far far away from. Yet I have no idea what I’m doing with my life. Last year, I was an 18 year old girl turning 19 and now I’m turning 20 in two months. I can’t even fathom not being a teenage girl. I love doing something I know I shouldn’t and then telling my friends that I can’t help it, “I’m just a teenage girl!”

 “Of course I had to see my ex, I’m just a teenage girl!” “Of course I had to have a sweet treat after dinner, I’m just a teenage girl!” “Of course I barely passed chemistry, I’m just a teenage girl!”

Being a teenage girl is the best thing ever. I’m really scared to not be able to fall back on that very real and very valid excuse. I’m scared how fast college is going by, and I’m so unbelievably scared for what life looks like after this giant sleepover that I can’t imagine ever ending. But what I’m not scared about is meeting the girl I become after these four years, not just a teenage girl, but a woman who isn’t constantly looking for reassurance from others. The kind of woman who’s able to love herself enough to know that she is capable and deserving of love, even if it doesn’t always seem like it. And hopefully that woman will be able to drive…hopefully! 

It’s only been one year since I’ve started college, but I’m in love with this person I’m becoming, the person that I still have time to become. And I think that’s forever going to be the best part of college. I’m allowed to make mistakes and completely change my mind about things that yesterday I swore up and down were forever. I change my outfit three times a day now. I can do that here!

Last year I was a biology major and now I’m an English major. And while I’m definitely nervous about what that means for me specifically, I know that’s the whole point. To figure out what you love to do, even if it takes you falling apart a couple times. College is a place that is going to make you cry and scream but it’s also somewhere you’ll go and meet the literal other half of your soul (yes, I love my best friend a lot.) You’ll realize how amazing growing up can be, even when the idea of turning 20 makes you want to crawl under your twin xl sheets and never come out again. No matter how old I get, checking my horoscope will always be ritualistic, crying over stupid cute girls will forever be inevitable, and blasting music in my headphones while painting my nails a bright pink color are things that will never change. Growing doesn’t mean having to let go of the things you love, the things that make getting up for an eight am class a little easier. Even though this year I’ll be blowing out 20 candles and saying goodbye to 19 year old me, I know I have my whole life ahead of me to cry and laugh and feel. Feel anything and everything. Getting older doesn’t stop that. No longer being a freshman doesn’t stop that. So while I may not have the invincible force field around me that is the ever so bright freshman year glow, I think maybe my sophomore year one will be even better. 

Somara Grewal

West Chester '26

Hi! My name is Somara! I'm currently a sophomore and I just changed my major to english this semester. A fun fact about me is I love the dork diary books, especially when I'm sad. My favorite book is Sixteenth summer, I'm just a teenage girl leave me alone! And I unironically really love love love the chocolate croissant from starbucks.