There are so many things that has happened in my college experience. Unfortunately, I made some bad decisions the first years of college that I am still trying to fix. When I went to college I was not prepared to go. I wish I had took a gap year and got some work experience. I was financially illiterate. I did take a finance course in high school, but I did not work. I had no idea how to understand the topics that were discussed in the class. It took me three years to fully understand basic finance and I am still learning.
- Debt: My first mistake was not understanding loans. I took out loans and used my student account to buy unneeded book supplies. Most of the loans were used for on campus housing. I stayed on campus for three years and accumulated a small portion of debt. During my first year of college, I did not have a job and my parents could not afford to pay for my housing.
- Class: I was always a decent student but when I went to college, I started getting lazy. I started skipping class because I had found a “new sense of freedom”. I wasted my money and other peoples time by not showing up to events or class. I’m a music major so I displayed myself as unprofessional. I feel so bad and I got two semesters behind because I decided to slack and not take it seriously.
- Unneeded items: During my last year of high school my dad had retired, so I got money disbursements from Social Sercurity. I was foolish and spent all my money on useless things. I wished I had saved my money. However, when I got depressed I would shop and buy things. It did not matter what it was. As long as I bought something it would temporarily make me feel good. I do not remember when I developed this habit, but I have resolved the issue. Afterwards, I would get upset and sometimes I would cry. I knew that I did not have money and that made me sad.
- My Gut: I always knew what I wanted to do since I was a teenager. I always wanted to get a license to become an esthetician. While I went to trade school, I would work part time and take core at a community college. Then once I obtained my certificate, I would eventually go to college to pursue music. That did not happen. I was rushed into making my decisions because my parents wanted me to go to college right after high school. I wish I could have explained to them my plans. I went with my parent’s decision because I respect them but following my gut would have saved me from making many financial mistakes.
- Being Social and Confident: I used to daydream about college life. I always thought I would embrace a new identity and finally not be shy. I am an introvert. I like keeping quiet and keeping to myself. I wish I was more social with my peers and took time to get to know them. When you are in a profession of music, it is good to have a few acquaintances. Knowing certain professors could help you get into a grad program or receive a scholarship. There are so many benefits to knowing people in your profession. My relationship with my peers and professors is unstable or not there. I have been a quiet person all my life and I wish that I had confidence to break out of my comfort zone and get to know others. I messed up with not be prompt in my studies and I neglected to know people in my class. It would have been nice to have befriended someone in my first year of college that was in my major.
I have learned to embrace my regrets, learn from them and move on. I cannot change what did or did not happen, but I can have a positive attitude for improvement and change.