As I finish my last semester in college, I have begun to reminisce about all the things I have learned and the people I have met over the years. These have been some of the most fulfilling yet hardest years of my life, and I have learned more than I could have ever imagined. I am extremely grateful for all the things I’ve been through, but there are a few things I wish I knew as a freshman.
College can be a huge change in direction for anyone. This is the time when you start making decisions that readily impact your future and how people perceive you. With all of this in mind, I have made it a goal of mine to cherish these few years while also making a noticeable impact on the school and my community, and I believe that you should do the same.
When I first received notice that Texas A&M was going to be closing for two days after spring break, I was excited. I thought “Wow, two extra days of spring break!”. but that all soon began to change. It went from two days to one week to finishing the entire semester online to complete social distancing. Since this was my last semester, my heart completely broke. I did not get to enjoy end-of-the-year banquets with my organizations, my last day as an undergraduate or walking the stage May 9, but when I realized that all of this was for a greater purpose, my thoughts changed. Is staying in my apartment for predominantly most of the day and not being able to regularly see my friends fun? No, but here are a few ways I’ve coped with it.
When I first started college, the transition from high school was very rough for me. Going from a small class size and living at home to being surrounded by thousands of students without any help from my parents was a huge shock. After struggling for multiple semesters, I decided to put myself first. These are a few things I’ve learned on this road to self-discovery.
Throughout high school, I constantly changed my mind on the major I wanted to pursue. I went from wanting to be a pharmacist, to a biomedical engineer, to an environmental engineer, and then a psychiatrist, but one thing led to another and I decided that electrical engineering was the right choice for me.
Representation matters. Here blogger Brittney Nelson shares her personal story and struggles as a minority engineering student, her path to success, and a call for change.
In April 2018, I was given the opportunity to leave my comfort zone and pursue my professional dreams. Everything sounded great, but I would have to leave Texas and move to South Carolina in less than 30 days. Even though I knew no one out there, I decided to pursue this endeavor and take this leap of faith.
Ever since I have started college, the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) has been my safe haven. This organization has given me the opportunity to meet great people, strengthen my leadership skills, and build my future. On the days I wanted to throw in the towel and give up on engineering, NSBE reminded me that where I was, was where I was supposed to be.
During my freshman year, I was a part of the Global Living Learning Center when I lived in Mosher Hall. Since it emphasized cultural inclusion they encouraged us to study abroad in San Miguel de Allende for the upcoming spring break. Before the trip I was a little hesitant to go since I did not know the people I was going with, nor had I been to Mexico, but I decided to follow my gut. Little did I know that this trip would be a memory I’d cherish for a lifetime.