My First Year at Columbia

Here’s to celebrating the end of the semester! I just finished up my sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago. I’ve successfully adjusted to living in the city. I definitely like Chicago more than LA – it suits me better. It’s been quite an interesting ride thus far and I’m excited for a fresh start in the Fall 2016 semester. I’ve met so many new and interesting people in my time at Columbia so far. Some have left, some have stayed, but all have made a positive impact on my life as a college student. I’ve had so many great opportunities this year, from working at the Kawaii Cafe for JAM (Japanese Anime and Manga Club), volunteering in the confetti crew for Manifest and collaborating on new marketing projects with my classmates. I also have other exciting news: I have a boyfriend! Luis and I met at the Kawaii Cafe, so anime brought us together. Throughout my college journey at Columbia, I’ve learned some lessons along the way. Here are my thoughts:

  1. Never, ever procrastinate. Get things done ahead of time. It’s better to tackle something unpleasant head on, otherwise you’ll keep ignoring it. Whether it’s homework or calling to make a doctor’s appointment, it’s better to do it sooner rather than later. I promise you’ll thank me for this advice. While my classmates are stuck with loads of homework, I’m off watching Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix. Also, projects take longer than you think they will. Give yourself time to do adequate research and put everything together. This is especially true for my marketing projects.
  2. Go out and explore the city or the area you’re in. Chicago has so much to do, you just have to make the effort to find what you love to do. For me, I found this cool place that has pie and biscuits in Logan Square. I ended up getting cracker jack pie which I’d never had before. There’s always something new waiting outside your door. This is why I like living in such a large city. There are endless possibilities to make your day great!
  3. Don’t rely on one person to create your friend group. Go say hi to people in class or at club meetings. It’s good to meet your “creative crew” based on your own interests. You have to go out and make an effort to establish friendships or relationships. This goes for dating too. Don’t let your friends do the work for you. If you want to meet someone, put yourself out there. You won’t find the right person to date if you never leave your room.
  4. Get to know your roommates! This is so important to do. I had great roommates for my first year at Columbia. I know I can say hi to any of them on campus, anytime, anywhere. It made my living situation more fun and entertaining. You might gain a new friend that also enjoys Netflix or Starbucks. You can simply start by saying hi or asking about their day. Be there for them in good and bad times. Cheer them on! Empowering others will make you feel good about yourself and your friendships. It might be nerve-wracking being in a new living situation, but I promise it will get easier.
  5. If you have RAs, get to know them. My RAs were great and  I really enjoyed talking to them. They’re great if you need advice about classes or stress management. If you have roommate issues, they’re a great resource too. They can be a helpful support system during your time at college. This is true for freshmen especially. Being away from home is a big transition and it’s good to ask for help along the way.
  6. Don’t prioritize dating over your friendships. This is also known as “sisters before misters”. It’s fun to be in a relationship, but make sure to spend time with your friends too. Try going on double dates if you have coupled-up friends. It’s good to be independent because you get to know yourself better. Also, you don’t always want to drag your boyfriend to the next big rom-com or Sephora all the time. It’s okay to take them sometimes but don’t make it a constant thing. Take your bestie instead; you guys will have so much fun gushing over how hot Ryan Gosling and talking about how amazing the new Kat Von D lipstick is.
  7. Have fun and don’t stress about the future! It will come soon enough. We can’t predict everything ahead of time. Enjoy your time in college while it lasts because it goes by so fast. That’s what happened to me at FIDM. I feel like it was just yesterday that I walked into my Fundamentals of Fragrance class. Also, it’s okay if you decide to transfer. That’s what I did after earning my Associate of Arts degree. I felt strongly that Chicago was the place for me. College is the time to figure out what you want to do in life, but it’s okay not to have it all together.
  8. Get off your phone sometimes. It’s good to live in the moment and not worry about taking the perfect picture. You don’t have to post everything on social media. Don’t get caught up in the outer appearance of a situation. Something isn’t always as it may seem. Some of the best moments for me don’t have photographs, but memories instead. I can recall what it was like to truly experience something amazing.



Thanks for reading my post and have a great day! The images are not my own and can be found on Pinterest.

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