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Thursday, September 28, 2023


Dear class of 2024: an open letter to college freshmen

Chris Charleston/ The Cougar

Fall 2020 will be an unusual semester for the incoming freshmen class, however, college is still a great time to build relationships and grow. | Chris Charleston/ The Cougar

Dear Class of 2024, 

I will make it short and sweet, much like your time at college. 

You might think that four years is a very long time and after I graduated high school, I felt the same way, but when I tell you that time will fly by, I mean it. You will be walking across that stage before you know it, so make the most out of the time you have at UH. 

As I begin my last year of college and look back on my time at UH, I dwell on the fact that I didn’t have the college experience I always wanted. I am graduating early and although from the beginning I kind of knew that a shorter academic journey was a possibility, I never really took the time to enjoy my college years. 

Learn from my mistakes and enjoy your time as a college student. As cheesy as it may sound, push yourself to get out of your comfort zone and grow as much as you can. This is the best time to make mistakes so don’t be scared to try new things. 

UH is an enormous campus and it can be easy to feel lost and alone, but a great thing about having a massive student body is that you are bound to find people who share your interests. The odds are literally in your favor, you just have to play the game and put yourself out there. 

This pandemic has taken us all by surprise; I never would have thought that my last year of college would look like this and I am sure you didn’t envision your first year of college like this either, but here we are. 

You never know what life will throw at you, so chase after you want and work towards your goals with everything you have. Yes, you should definitely be working hard for your future, but you are also young and deserve to enjoy these few years. 

The best advice I could give you is to talk to the people in your classes. It’s going to be different than what you are used to since most of us won’t be physically on campus, but this generation is tech-savvy, and GroupMe and Zoom will help you make friends. 

Although it can be scary to approach someone and start a conversation, you never know where it could lead; you could be meeting your future best friend, spouse, co-worker or make a career advancing connection. 

I can almost guarantee that the other person is just as scared as you to start this new chapter of their lives, so just be friendly and kind. 

It is also completely OK to not find your group your first semester, or even year, but don’t let it discourage you from trying; the next person you meet might just be the right one.

Go after your dreams. Go the extra mile. Go out of your comfort zone. And go Cougars!

Gina Medina is a journalism senior who can be reached at [email protected]

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