Pretty soon you and your friends will be packing up and shipping off to college. This is an excellent and exciting time in your life, ripe with opportunities for education, friendship and garnering life experience. In American culture, college is a right of passage from teen-ism to adulthood. If you are one of the millions of teens who have to live on campus, you will be faced with unique challenges and opportunities. Living on your own, or rather, without the protective roof of your parents’ home over your head can be both exhilarating and frightening at the same time. In most dorms there is an overseeing body and a sort of unspoken buddy system but you’re still in charge of yourself. You can come and go based on the more lax curfews that are afforded to you, you are in charge of your diet, health and exercise, and you have full control over who your friends are and what you do with them. College is a learning space for more than just academics but also for life. There is no rule book to prepare you for life and certainly if there was one to prepare you for college there would never be any incidents of things gone awry. You have to wing it, use what you know, use what you learn, add some common sense and try to survive like everyone else around you.
Self-Development and Exploration in College
It’s about discovering what excites and where your passions lie. It’s about removing yourself from your comfort zone and entering into the unknown. College is where we get to be who we want. For those who are just going to be entering in soon, there are things you need to be aware of so you don’t make stupid and detrimental mistakes. Like a caged bird freshly freed, we often lose ourselves in the ability to do whatever we want with veritably no adult supervision. Keep in mind however that in college, there are adult rules, with an expectancy of adult behaviors and they come with their own unique adult consequences. There are some things your parents can’t protect you from and when you’re 18, the law can either be your friend or your worst nightmare. Specifically to the young women entering college this year – please be careful with what you photograph or document on film. Without being lewd, understand that we get what it’s like to have urges and want to explore each others’…territories…but films and videos have a way of sticking around long after the moment has passed and you don’t want to be judged or ostracized for something playful you did way back when. If you feel you’ve been the victim of online slander or that your image or personal information may have been gotten through a less than consensual manner, you can go to sites that offer online reputation management services and begin reclaiming you property and identity before it is too late.
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