For SUNY Oswego students, this week marks the completion of the fifth week of classes. As a Resident Assistant, I’ve always been of the mind set that for new students, if they complete the first six weeks of school without going home, then the rest of their time here will be a piece of cake. Of course there will be challenges, but there’s a dose of pride to be taken in the idea of being in a completely new environment and making it on your own there for a month and a half. That’s the test. Now, this semester has made that hard with so many days off, but the point still stands: if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere (okay, so maybe that’s not entirely true—I hear this thing called the real world is rough at times—but I digress).
For me, these first five weeks have been a whirlwind. Back in May, I didn’t even know if I would be here. I had just graduated from my undergrad experience right here at Oswego and was still up in the air about whether I wanted to continue my studies. I had gotten into my program of choice, Integrated Media and Social Networks—I studied Broadcasting and Mass Communication to get my Bachelor’s—and had already been hired as an RA again in the building where it all started, Cayuga Hall (the best building on campus). The pieces were there, I just had to figure out how I wanted to piece them together.
I had a few options: I could either come back and work towards an Advanced Certificate that would hopefully land me a better job once the year long program is complete. Or, I could stay at home and continue job searching in the hopes that something good (or just anything in general) will arise. After a long summer of contemplating these two options, I finally decided that returning to Oswego would be the best for me, to give me expanded experience within my field.
Looking back at a personal blog post I had written post-graduation, it’s funny to think that I was so torn back then. It now feels like I had never left and coming back to Oswego has felt so natural. Okay, so maybe some backstory might help. When I say “coming back” I don’t just mean coming back after graduating. During my final semester of senior year, I completed an internship in New York City with a film news website called Indiewire. I left a lot behind, including a lot of friends and responsibilities, in order to do this. So for me, the decision to come back to Oswego wasn’t even just about whether I would want to continue my studies or get a job, it was whether I’d want to continue my studies after being out of that mindset for an entire semester.
What’s the point I’m trying to make? For any new students who may be wondering whether they made the right decision or are feeling overwhelmed in these first few weeks, know that in the moment it may be hard, but if you stick with it, you’ll have a lot to look back on. Your future-self will look back on the good, the bad and the ugly, and probably laugh because your future self can’t imagine ever being that indecisive or worried. So know that it gets better and if those feelings ever arise, just ask yourself this: what would future-me think?
I already have four years here at Oswego under my belt and am looking forward to what this year will bring. I wouldn’t trade any of it for anything, even the bad times (there were plenty). It’s all because I don’t want future-me to look back and regret not taking full advantage of this place. For any new students, you’re going make a lot of memories here if you stick with it. A lot of them will be great, some of them will be bad, but all of it will be an experience.