Take The Edge Off College

A junior’s reflection on leaving her island home for college

Growing up in the islands has given me many experiences that most children and teens around the world don’t necessarily get. That being said, it has also kept me from being exposed to numerous possible circumstances I will be faced with in the future. That’s right, I’m talking about going off to college. While college in itself is an entirely new experience to take on, leaving this small island to go somewhere on a stretch of land ten times as big simply adds to the pressure even more. The transition is similar to that of leaving the safe haven of middle school and going off to an overwhelming high school campus. It’s filled with new opportunities and people who you have no idea how to approach.

While going to school on island is also an option, I feel that most take the journey across the Pacific to scope out these awaiting experiences. It is true, staying in Hawaii would save you from having to throw together your best home-sick remedies, but what about when you’re sick of home? Our island is very family-structured and the aloha spirit is eminent, though it’s easy to look out over the horizon and wonder what’s beyond.

[one_third]The only way for opportunities and relationships to be possible, however, is to approach them with an open mind and to allow yourself to branch out.[/one_third]

[two_third_last]There are bound to be many cultural changes in other states, varying from how far along the compass you go, but it is always important to remember where you came from. These changes are definitely adaptable and will only teach you more and more as you go on. The only way for opportunities and relationships to be possible, however, is to approach them with an open mind and to allow yourself to branch out. I’ve noticed two very distinct groups of college freshmen: the ones who stay with their high school friends and the ones who make new ones.There seems to be no gray area with this, and we’re always told in high school not to stay within our own clique of high school friends. I think getting to know people out of state would present anyone with invaluable experience as they get to know how people work differently throughout the world. Though, it’s important not to forget friends at home. Hopefully, there doesn’t have to be just black and white, and it will be possible to create a gray area instead that balances both friends from home and the new ones along your journey.[/two_third_last]

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