What is a Fruitful College Experience?

This is my 8th college semester, with one more to go (hopefully) due to being a transfer student. This is also the only semester in college where I’ve truly had a great college experience.

In my past semesters I always allowed my introversion to get in the way of being spontaneous and making friends. I normally stayed in my room doing work, reading, watching Netflix, or whatever I felt like. I had almost no extracurricular activities whatsoever. And the worst part is I felt like doing that (and by “doing that” I mean “doing nothing”) was part of a great college experience. I see now that it wasn’t anything close.

I now believe my past semesters to have been terrible, because this semester, one of my last, has been incredibly fulfilling. This semester, instead of staying in the dorm and being introverted, I’ve let my extroverted side out and began to hang out with friends more. I’ve begun to take part in more extracurricular activities, like Ratio Christi, The Theatrical Society, teaching youth at a local church, and of course The Talon. No doubt I’m very busy with all these and my schoolwork, but I think it’s the busyness that’s added much of the fulfillment. It turns out that being extremely introverted takes away from your college experience.

Here’s a list of conditions that I think are necessary for having a fruitful college experience. Of course I’ve only had about half a semester of experience and thus am an amateur, but I believe these points hold:

1). Even if you’re an introvert, make time for social events, time with friends, etc.

2). Be a part of ongoing extracurricular activities. There are many clubs, sports, and everything else on campus. If you’re an introvert, continue doing it anyway if at first you hate it. I haven’t regretted it.

3). Shift around your schedule every once in a while. Be spontaneous. Doing the same thing every day and every week can get boring fast.

4). Do things you never thought you would do, whether it be getting up in front of a group of people and speaking, trying out for a chapel music team, etc.

I’ve followed 1-4 this semester and have no doubt that it has enhanced my college experience. I only wished that I had begun sooner.