View Full Version : the University Experience.. opinions please

03-01-2003, 02:00 AM
I was just wondering what people thought of their univ experience or someone they know or just thoughts on the whole thing. I'm graduating in April, and looking back, the past four years have been such a waste. I've been unhappy the ENTIRE time. It's been boring and mind numbing, and also very lonely. I don't live "on campus" so I've only made 2 friends that I still talk to, and that's only online, only every couple of months.

I also feel like I've lost all my creativity. I used to write poetry and short stories all the time, and I was really proud of them. I loved to write, and I even won some school and district contests in high school. But at univ, where I'm always writing an essay that has the same formula, I have the hardest time writing even a descriptive paragraph. It's all about expository prose. I tired to write a poem the other night, and I got all caught up in the punctuation.. good grief!! There is a creative writing program at the school, but I don't like the faculty or their beliefs about writing. It's all "post-modern" and nothing else flies. Which I totally disagree with.. I think writing is an expression of oneself that shouldn't really have any "rules" but whatever.. I'm not the head of the department.

Anyway, I was wondering if anyone else hated univeristy? I feel like I've wasted the last four years of my life and a LOT of money on a degree that's pretty much usless to me.. when I could have gone directly into something else, graduated in a year and had a sucessful career by now.

Any thoughts?

03-01-2003, 06:04 AM
I was in college in 1980 to 1984 (actually, 1983. graduated 1/2 semester early), so trying to remember might put a strain on the brain.;) But mostly I liked it. But I always liked school. I was always a loner (so not making a whole lot of friends does not come as a surprise). I will say that it has not done a thing for me. I was unable to find a job to put my B.S. to use even though I graduated with honors.
So the point is 1) everyone is different. and 2) I am truely sorry it was unpleasant for you.

03-01-2003, 06:53 AM
Dear Naomi , you seem like you need a good break from university ..! As soo as yoy have that degree , put it away safely , and do something completely different ; maybe some travelling would be a great idea too ! It doesn't have to be a fancy trip ; a bag-pack-trip is wonderful for anyone who needs a good "blow-through" ! Anyway , whatever you do , try to get away from your books as far as possible !
I hope you find something !!!!
ps. and hey , if you need a place to stay in Belgium , you are ALWAYS welcome here !!http://www.thecatarena.com/forum/html/emoticons/3swim.gif

03-01-2003, 07:40 AM
I didn't live on campus either so I had no friends. I just went to school, did my thing, and went to work and then home and did the same thing over again the next day.
I graduated with honors and have not used my degree. But that's ok cause I'm working with animals and I love my job.
I wouldn't say that college was pointless. I'm glad I went. I just wish I could have participated in activities. I'm just too shy and no one wants to come near me:(
Be glad you are getting a college degree. Remember no one can ever take that away from you!!

03-01-2003, 08:13 AM
Naomi, I had the same experience. I also lived off campus, and it seemed that all the other kids were there just to party at night and sleep during class. :rolleyes: I also agree that college classes tend to sap the creativity out. I took an art class and it was just like being in kindergarten...you had to do just exactly as the teacher did. I also took a creative writing class, and we had to follow "the form" or else we didn't get an A. Maybe I just wasn't ready for college then.

Since then I have taken some courses at a technical community college and learned so much, and really enjoyed them. The atmosphere is totally different, and it seems like the kids were there to learn instead of there to goof off.

03-01-2003, 09:37 AM
I hated college. The first week I was there, I couldn't stand it--all I could think was "is this how I have to live for the next 4 years?" (dorms, showers I had to wear shoes in, dinner in cafeterias). I transferred after 2 years, and lived off campus, but a year later, I took my time off--I hated it so much. I hated the classes, the teachers, the whole idea of it. I still haven't gone back, and sometimes I want to (just to say that I did).
For me, it wasn't the right fit--but I felt like I had to go after high school, so I did.

03-01-2003, 11:59 AM
my first go round at college was fall 1975 to winter 1978 (aLOOOONG time ago), and i lived on campus the first year, then off the next 2. educationally, it was just ok. i was a history/pol sci major, i didn't, in hindsight get what would have been useful educational mentoring. i did meet my first long relationship (12 years)and i have good memories of that. my technical community college years, 1884-1987, got me a education in radiography(x-ray technologist) which did move me into being able to support myself and my animals. but, that education made my partner so uncomfortable with my new skills and life possibilities, that we wound up splitting up just as the financial pay-off years started.
i've found more outlets for creative expression at community art centers and bookgroups, and local classes.
i'm planning on restarting at a local college again in the fall, to move the 2 associates and 3/4 of a history degree into a bachelors, mainly for the B.A. on my name tag at work.
go do other things for a year, then when the curiosity moves you, restart classes, of some sort

03-01-2003, 02:46 PM
Thanks for the replies. I find it interesting that so many others didn't like it either. At least I feel better about hating it now too! :D

03-01-2003, 06:27 PM
I don't think I ever hated it, but I did get tired of the whole thing, especially towards the end.

But there is no way I would ever choose to not do it again. Quite honestly, I have not had an experience that has shaped me quite so much as university. There are professors I still talk to, friends that I met there that I can't imagine life without, and so much information I was exposed to that has changed my views on life and totally turned what I thought I knew upside down.

03-01-2003, 08:18 PM
If I could go back, I wouldn't go again. I would have gotten the degree I'm working on now in college and went to University to specialise later. The atmosphere is totally different, and it's less money.

And, like I said before, I haven't formed any lasting relationships with anyone at Univeristy. It's hard to make friends at a place like that when you don't think getting drunk is fun or you aren't a professional protester (meaning protest EVERYTHING)

03-01-2003, 10:45 PM
ahhh, i wouldn’t know what to do about college but, I think you need an creative break!! I get mental blocks when I write little stories or poems, so i go in my room, unplug all the electronics, close all the windows, and ask a question then try to come up with as answers as possible. like here’s some examples of some brain exercises-

How many different ways can you use a rubber band???
e.x. To flick across the room for the cat to chase

Hello (pick any short word)
e.x. Henry Eats Leftover Limes Occasionally

How many keys are one a keyboard?
(self explanatory)

Make a paragraph using as many c's as possible

I hope some of these make up for my lack of college knowledge!! Hey that kind of rymthes! :rolleyes: My brain tends to stop so i use these often.

03-01-2003, 10:48 PM
I think it may depend on your major and when you go. I think that if you go when you are serious about your future goals (career) you would enjoy it better. I'm still going (taking forever while working full-time) and I can't wait to get to the classes that are of my major...I'm really excited.

03-02-2003, 03:17 AM
For me, university wasn't only about a career. I wasn't there JUST to get a degree that would lead to a certain profession. I was there to get told things I hadn't heard before and to expand my mind. Perhaps you'd enjoy it more if you broadened your purpose in being there?

03-06-2003, 04:13 AM
When I decided to go into University, I expected it to be so much more than a path to a career. I couldn't wait to meet people who were interested in the same things as me, were as passionate as I was about our work, etc etc etc. However, none of those expectations came true. I realised very quickly it was still all about who got the best grades. Sure, looks didn't matter as much anymore, but getting a B always got the response, "Oh. Well, that's not bad.. we all have times where we wished we had studied more" *insert sympathetic smile and 'I got better than you' eyes* If I had only wanted a job I would have gone to a community college or something, not spent four years at a place where I really haven't learned anything practical. And besides that, it's still playing into the system. If I want an A in a class, I know I have to argue a point that happens to be on the teacher's "ok" list or, better yet, has been published in their name. It's all a huge game.

Anyway, I'm just a little bitter about the whole thing. It just really seems like the whole "higher learning" is a sham.. at least at my school.

03-06-2003, 04:51 AM
I can agree to what Lut said -to have a break.

After university I was very glad to get away from it and I definitely felt like doing other things seeing how different things are when you're at work.
I have been studying physics which is absolutely not what I am doing now. But it gave me certain way of thinking, a way of never believing "I am too stupid for something" and for the rest of my life the information that I can start something AND finish it.
I do not live anymore in this city and as I was at university between 1972 and 1979 I do not have too many friends from that area but I had lots when I was there.

So I hope after a certain time you will find out what this period of your live meant for you and to check that I also would recommend travelling!
And if you want to go from Belgium to Munich you could stay here too. (Selfish thinking -I LOVE Vancouver Island).

Edwina's Secretary
03-06-2003, 06:46 AM
I was fortunate that my parents never asked me IF I wanted to go to college, but WHERE I was going to go. I anounced I was going half way across the country. Never even saw the university until I started classes.

I don't know that I learned alot academically but I learned much about myself, etc. Among the things I learned that I especially value is the ability to think through thing critically and solve problems.

After a year I decided that I was tired of school so I accelerated and finished my degree in three years. THAT I regret. I was just short of my 21st birthday. I wish I had stayed in college longer and played more and taken classes that weren't absolutely required. I had no margin of error. Until very recently I had a reoccurring dream that I had to go back and finish!

I had lots of friends in college but it is the one phase of my life from which I don't stay in touch with anyone.

Nonetheless, my education has done me well and I am grateful my parents never gave me a choice!

03-06-2003, 08:03 AM
It's been a while since I was in college (1980-1984), but I enjoyed it. I lived on campus and was involved in a lot of things there that I enjoyed. But I do remember that I was so ready to get out when it was time to graduate. I think burn out happens easily after so many years of hard study. I would love to go back now for post graduate work, but time doesn't allow it. Maybe one day.

My work has nothing to do with my degree and hasn't since the first year I got out, but I have to admit that just having that diploma, regardless of what I studied, has opened a lot of doors for me that would not have been opened otherwise. For me, it was definitely worth it.

You'll be done soon and you can relax and perhaps get back to doing some of the things you enjoy. I hope so! :)

03-06-2003, 11:49 AM
I went to college right out of high school, and while I didn't hate it, I didn't 'love' it either. I think I was too impatient, and just wanted to get on with my life- what I thought at the time was the better, more interesting part. Like Ms. Edwina's mom, I wish I would have taken more time to detour. But, I wouldn't say it was a waste of my time. I, too, never was questioned about college..it was just expected of me. I think that, on whole, it was a better thing for me that I went.

My college, which in an incredibly small private college, had a pretty large international consistency. Also, I was a poli sci major, and taught largely by non-American born profs. That was hugely broadening. College taught me more about the functional part of life then it did about the education. Sure, I learned alot, but, it was the 'how to learn'/ critical thinking that I grew from. I don't know if you had asked me in my last semester, or immediately out of college what I felt , if my answer would have been different. I suspect it might have.

I went on to law school 8 years later. That was truly an educational experience, and certainly more challenging than my 4 years of undergrad. I wouldn't trade that experince for all the cats in the world (well, maybe I would ), even if I decided to leave the practice of law.

I think you should look at your years at university as part of the whole process that helps to shape you as a person. AND, be sure to post a picture of you with the square hat on your head!!

03-06-2003, 12:05 PM
I never went to university but here's a story about my neice, Stephanie. She went through 2 years of University right after high school and at the end of that time I think she felt the same way. She took a year off and is now in Switzerland as an Au Pier (don't know how to spell it??). She is having a great time and lives with a wonderful family and looking after the children. She meets tons of people, learning new languages and she tells us that the experience has enriched her life tremendously. And she's able to travel on her days off. I'm sure when she returns she will have a new outlook.......

I wish I'd had that opportunity!