Remember your high school experience? Try and think about how many teachers, coaches, and parents have told you that high school will prepare you for college. Too many to think about, right? Well here’s a little slap in their faces: high school does NOT prepare students for college. Don’t get me wrong, education is important but college is about more than learning. Here are several things I realized about my high school experience once I got to college.
1. AP classes are a Waste of Time
AP classes, or advanced placement classes, are meant to give students college-like work to prepare for what college classes will be like. Reality: AP classes are a way for students to boost their GPA while continually stressing themselves out to possibly get college credit that may or may not transfer over. Instead, take dual enrollment classes are your local community college if your high school offers them…that way you are guaranteed college credit for passing!
2. No One is Going to Baby You
Once you go off to college, you lose all of the sheltering that you have had throughout high school. In high school, you missed the due date for your algebra homework because you had a football game? Just turn it in tomorrow and we’ll let it slide. In college, if you miss the due date, you miss the due date or your grade will suffer significantly. No one is there to hold your hand in college.
3. Dress Code Doesn’t Exist
You realize that wearing leggings to class is not going to be the end-all-be-all for male students. Were leggings that big of a distraction in high school or was it just another rule for the school to enforce? This is just one of the many benefits to college and your new freedom.
4. Learning can be… Fun
High school teachers taught for one reason: to cover all of the material they were told to cover. Students are learning to pass, not learning to learn. In college, students have the opportunity to take classes that they find interesting. Professors in college enjoy the subjects they teach and are not forced to cover every page word-for-word. College is about finding yourself so take that art class you’ve always wanted to…you may end up loving it.
5. High School is Only a Small Part of Your Life
So what you lose the championship game for your team? It’s only high school. So what your teacher gives you a grade you didn’t deserve because they don’t like you? It’s only high school. So what your boyfriend breaks up with you after four years? It’s only high school.
6. Your Friends Will Change and That’s Okay
Once you get to college you are going to make new friends. You will keep in touch with your friends from high school but it will never be the same. Going to college changes you and the kind of people you want to be surrounded with.
7. A Perfect GPA and Perfect Grades Don’t Define You
Sure straight A’s all four years of high school is wonderful but the day you graduate, you restart. Did you really learn anything in that AP class or did you only take it to graduate in the top 20 of your class? Your probably not going to get straight A’s all four years in college so don’t put so much pressure on yourself!
8. Every Minute of Class Time is Not Necessary
In high school teachers walk in as soon as the bell rings and say, “No talking because we must use every minute to learn.” Let me tell you, that is a LIE. The amount of times professors cut class early because they don’t want to get ahead on material or cancel class comes as somewhat of a shock to freshmen in college. Forcing information down students throats is not going to help them learn, sorry high school teachers.
9. You Have to Spend Time Actually Studying
In high school your grade was divided in so many ways that failing one test wouldn’t mean you had to drop the class. You could study for a test in 30 minutes to an hour and be good to go. In college, studying has to be part of your day-to-day routine. There is not homework every night to give you that extra little push. Studying can make or break your grades in college. Find a quizlet (they’re out there) and get to it.
10. We are NOT Prepared for the Real World
What are taxes? How do I make a job resume? How do bills work? Should I take out a loan? Why is voting important? How do healthcare plans work? Students are taught loads of things in high school that they may never use again. However, students are never taught life skills that are extremely vital to their life as an adult.
High school is only a stepping stone to get to college. You probably won’t use the quadratic formula like every high school math teacher told you if you aren’t going to be a math major. High school does not prepare you for college. Your first semester of college will prepare you for college so take your high school experience for what it is.