Letter from the Managing Editor: Grow as you go


CW File

Jeffrey Kelly | @jeffkellyjr, Managing Editor

Before I sat down to write this letter, while on a little walk, I poked at the proverbial bee’s nest of advice I’ve accumulated throughout college. As the swarm of good, bad and unsolicited advice buzzed around my head, I realized that right now, you’re probably getting so much advice about everything, and it all might seem a bit overwhelming. I know it was for me when I first came to college.   

So, first, I must say that no matter how much advice you get, you don’t have to implement it all at once. Take the time out over your first few weeks and self-assess, check in with yourself and make sure you’re okay; because the goal of the piles of advice you’re getting is to make sure you’re okay.     

However, if I must add one more pebble of “wisdom” to the mountain you’re accumulating, I’ve settled on this: Kylie Jenner once said that 2016 was “the year of realizing stuff.” To me, your college years will be your time to “realize stuff.”  

You will be confronted with waves of realizations from the second you step onto campus. Maybe you realize you aren’t as prepared as you thought you were, or the career you thought you wanted isn’t exciting you anymore, or you’ll miss your parents more than you anticipated. No matter what it is, you’ll soon realize that life is full of experiences that will shift your perspective.  

It isn’t these realizations that are most important it’s how you react to them. As you go about your journey, be open to the change these realizations can bring. Stay true to yourself, but understand that the person you were in high school isn’t your permanent self. We’ve all got growing to do. As the great philosopher, Carrie Bradshaw once pondered, “maybe our mistakes are what make our fate. Without them, what would shape our lives?” College is about learning and preparing for a career, but it’s also about expanding on a personal, societal and cultural level.  

As you’re growing, don’t take yourself too seriously. Don’t forget what you’ve come here for, but don’t fall into the habit of stressing over every little thing or not doing something beneficial just because you don’t deem it necessary. Allow yourself to make mistakes, have fun and learn what works for you because that’s what everyone else is doing, even if it doesn’t seem like it.  

Yes, some seem to always have it figured out, but growing at your own pace is okay. Use these next four years to get accustomed to those growing pains. Before you know it, you’ll graduate and join the workforce or start another academic program. Then you’ll realize that you never stop discovering things even out there, and that change is constant — or maybe that’s just what I’ve learned from hours of binging “Sex and the City.”  

As you’re working on figuring it out, don’t be afraid to ask for help when it’s too much, because everything won’t be good all the time; as a wise woman once said, “You don’t need to be good all the time. It’s okay to not be good.”