Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Over ten years ago I came to UW-Madison to attend SOAR. Even though it was awhile back, I can still remember the nervousness as well as the excitement.
Now that I'm grown and old, I think back and wonder if I had known then what I know now, would my experience have been a little less nerve-wracking? Maybe. These are three things I wish I would have realized while attending SOAR:
1. You may meet some really great fellow students during SOAR that will be your friends for life. If not, though, that's okay. There are plenty of opportunities to meet more people once you get to campus! I stressed out because I did not become instant best friends with anyone I met at SOAR, when in reality, once I got to campus I was meeting new people every day and SOAR was just a distant memory. Everyone has a different experience and that's okay!
2. It is also okay to not know what all the majors are or what the classes will cover. Ask questions, solicit recommendations and keep an open mind. I signed up for a cultural anthropology class because an advisor recommended it, but had no idea what it really was. I should have asked - it would have saved me a lot of worry over the rest of the summer - but it also turned out to be one of the more interesting classes I took!
3. It's okay to wear flip flops in the residence hall showers. In fact, it is highly recommended. It is also normal to see people wearing bathrobes and bath towels in the hallways. Navigating the norms of down-the-hall showers was a new experience for me - hopefully this helps others know what to expect.
Have an interesting SOAR experience to share? What wisdom can you impart to incoming first-year students? Leave a comment!