What College Means to Me by Sabrina Van Zuiden

What College Means to Me

Before this summer, the word college made my stomach churn. It was a word I associated with application deadlines, fees, and the fast approaching end to my youth. I mean, I knew everyone said they were going to be the best years of my life, but how could I really believe them? Why should I believe them?

But of course time doesn’t stop to give you an extra chance to gather your thoughts and feelings, so I went through the process of an overnight stay program, my student orientation, setting my schedule, etc. And the more I get ready for it, the more excited I get. I may not have experienced true college life yet, and I know that there will be difficulties as I make that transition this fall, but I’m starting to see it. I can see it taking shape in front of me- this abstract idea that I had once detested is now turning into a tangible concept and I can see why I should believe all of these people around me claiming the best of college.

To me, college once meant that I was about to jump off the cliff of my comfort zone into the churning, terrifying water of the unknown. Now college means that I’ll have a place to explore the interests that were just budding in high school. College means that I can enjoy education in a way that I never have before; I love my fall schedule so much I do a happy dance in my head every time I think about it. But perhaps the part I’m truly excited about is the opportunity to meet people that I can have stimulating conversation with. In a short conversation at my student orientation I went from talking to someone about the World Cup to debating the institution of sweatshops to discussing the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana. I heard opinions in that one conversation that I never would have considered on my own.

Now, that is what I think of when someone mentions college. It is my opportunity to grow and learn and discover. I might still be making a leap off the cliff of my comfort zone, but the water below isn’t looking as bad as it used to.Screen Shot 2014-09-09 at 6.07.12 PM

Sabrina served this summer as in intern with the PLNU Center for Justice & Reconciliation. She recently began her college experience as a freshman at U.C. Berkeley. We are proud to know Sabrina and can’t wait to see how she changes the world.

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