High school felt easy to me. All throughout high school, I was a three-sport athlete and maintained a 4.3 weighted grade point average, leaving me with the sense that I would not only adjust well to college but excel. However, there were also activities and routines in and outside of high school that made the transition to college difficult.
The sports and extracurriculars I was involved me helped me establish my time management skills. In addition to playing three sports, I was also a part of a club soccer team all throughout my high school career, which was separate from school. My junior year was extra busy as I had a job after school.
So, my days consisted of waking up, going to school, going to my sports practices, attending my club sport or work, doing homework, and finally going to sleep. My weekends consisted of family events, soccer tournaments, and more homework. Maintaining a busy schedule in high school has helped me stay on top of my schoolwork in college. Time management is essential to doing well in college, regardless of your major.
I also felt academically prepared for college as I was well-acquainted with the demands of honors and AP-level classes. Moreover, followed a semester-calendar schedule, similar to college. This schedule prepared me to work at a much faster pace, learning everything in half the time you would normally have. This, along with the amount of work I had, prepared me the most for college. Although the workload in high school is a lot less, I still feel like I went into college prepared for the work
Despite my sport and academic background, I don’t feel like I was entirely prepared for college. I’m only saying this because there is so much more that goes on in college that someone wouldn’t experience in high school. For instance, college is extremely expensive, and high school doesn’t teach you how to save. There is no class dedicated to learning how to budget to pay bills while still having money to go out with friends. High school doesn’t even teach us how to apply for a loan. This is something I feel that would have been beneficial to me before going into higher education.
Most traditional high schools don’t prepare you for having to live in close quarters with someone you barely know. Dorm life is hard; students face roommate drama, in addition to learning how to adjust to living with someone other than family.
Finally, I believe that high school did not prepare me for the mental toughness that you need in college. If you go to a school far away, you are faced with missing home a lot of the time. This feeling can get hard to deal with sometimes. Moreover, if you don’t like your school, it is often even harder to stay focused. For me these things were especially hard. I was extremely homesick and did not like my old school as much as I do now since transferring to Monmouth. I wish high school had taught me that it’s okay to hate where you are at and leave to be somewhere where you are happier.
College involves a lot of life lessons you don’t normally face in high school; however, there are things high school could incorporate to better prepare students.