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Personal story: What to expect in your first year of college


turn2me community member Rebecca has just completed her first year in college and shares her experience so far. 

Feeling anxious

After getting results the suspense isn’t over yet.  Waiting for CAO offers is so exciting but can be a very anxious time for everyone.  When I first thought about college, it made me feel very anxious because it is a new experience.  I had no idea what to expect.  

Fitting in 

A concern that everyone would have is that of making friends, and fitting in.  However, the one thing that never crossed my mind was that everyone in your course has the same interest and is in the same position as you.  Colleges have plenty of clubs and societies, so you should find one that interests you.  One thing I really enjoyed about college is that there are so many different personalities and age groups.  

School work

Another concern I had about college was that it is so different to secondary school, the work is very independent, and you don’t have your teacher pressing you to complete your work, essays or projects.  But the main difference is that you want to learn the subject matter on your course.

The lectures are longer than normal secondary school classes, but you don’t get homework every day.  However, you do get assignments, exams, group projects and presentations, and the lecturers provide you with plenty of reading material.  The learning assessments are very different, but they were definitely more enjoyable than in secondary school.

Worth it!

Something I would have told myself this time last year would be not to worry about college and overthink every little thing.  It will work out in its own time, there are supports available if you need them, the lecturers are on your side – they want you to do well.  It takes practice to get used to the new way of education, and the independence, but you do get there, and it will be worth it.