Lectures Let Down Expectations: Where I Did My Actual Learning

When I arrived at college I assumed I would spend all my time in the lecture and I would be a model student. That was partially true for a semester or two. But then I felt that I slept more in the lecture than out, and as soon as my professor started talking I would pass out. Not because I wasn’t interested, I just physically couldn’t stay awake. Then I skipped a few lectures. Then I skipped more, and although my grade’s slightly slipped, I felt life getting better.

Instead, I filled the time with more productive things. These things included getting an internship, and joining multiple student organizations. Instead of going to class, I have worked 19 hours per week at my internship since my sophomore year. There I learned much more about my major, Computer Science than I have in any of my classes. It has been great for getting real-world skills and making money during college. The next way I spent my time was getting involved in campus life. I got way more involved with WUD and became an associate director for WUD Cuisine. There I helped put on educational programming about food such as cooking demonstrations and workshops. I then got involved with F.H. King Students for Sustainable Agriculture. There I am a finance director, while also helping out at our student-run farm and with our hydroponics systems. We produce free food for students to help fight food insecurity.

My internship and participation in student life were infinitely more valuable to me than my time spent in the lecture halls during college. I found that many of the things taught in lecture halls are available from other sources or can be self-taught. That is why I tried to free up as much of my time from in-person classes so I can follow my passions, get real-world skills, and lead a more fulfilling life.

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