As a young girl, I always knew I would attend college regardless of what it took. I dreamed and planned for the day since I was seven years old. In late 2014, my dream came true. I was starting my freshman year at Monroe College in New Rochelle, NY, with one of my closest friends, Pam. Words couldn’t express how excited I was to start college finally. I wanted the full college experience like they showed on TV. However, I didn’t realize how unprepared I was to become independent in the college atmosphere. College can be a struggle academically, and the financial burden that comes with it adds to the madness. So here I am, overwhelmed, away from home, living on campus with no job and ordinary expenses that I had to keep up with (phone bill, grocery shopping, emergency money, etc).
I knew that my time at Monroe would be over after my freshmen year because it was too expensive to stay up there. In 2015, I transferred to NJCU, the university in my hometown. Coming home was supposed to be cheaper and more manageable, but it was the opposite. My bills doubled, and I had more responsibilities back home. Working little jobs to get by was over; I had to get a full-time job, which meant giving up some studying time & basketball.
While working full-time, I struggled with keeping my grades up and finding time to study. My time management was terrible, and I didn’t learn how to manage it until my LAST college semester, which was my best academically. Before my last semester, I was constantly struggling with being on time for class, starting assignments at a reasonable time, and just being able to give my education my all and undivided attention. I was always tired and trying to keep up with a day’s work and schooling, only on a few hours of sleep. If I knew the importance of time management early on, I would’ve had a better outcome and probably graduated at the top of my class.
Although I finished my bachelor’s degree, I did not get the full college experience I longed for! I missed many social outings, networking, and adolescent/early adulthood fun.
If you have any questions on how I did it or need advice on time management, please don’t hesitate to comment below and ask!