February 27, 2016

Late. This post was supposed to be published on Saturday but I was thrust into a busy weekend. On Saturday I spent the day in Turlock, California to watch a few old teammates play a tennis match against Stanislaus State.  It was so great being able to visit with old friends, some of whom I haven’t seen since May.  I miss being on a tennis team, but I still stand by the decision I made to transfer to Fresno Pacific.  

I wanted to go to FPU because I felt like I wasn’t getting the most out of my college experience.  I wanted a job, an internship, or some type of experience that would help towards a future career and I felt like tennis wasn’t doing that for me.  So here I am, juggling a few different responsibilities.  My old teammates said to me “Oh, you must have so much free time now!” All I could do in response was laugh.

This week midterm exams are coming up, and to be honest I’m very stressed.  I really don’t even have too many tough midterms which is nice because last semester was brutal when it came to midterms. I genuinely think that the reason why I am not stressing about midterms is because I am stressing about other things.  

Lately the subject of finding a job I actually enjoy has been on my mind.  I am just so afraid that I won’t find something that I particularly like because I haven’t found a specific career goal yet.  I decided that I will go to the Fresno State (nearby university) Career Fair on Tuesday and I am just going to keep an open mind and put myself out there.  Maybe I’ll express interest in jobs I hadn’t before, maybe I’ll be exposed to some I didn’t know about.  I’m just really hoping that this career fair will be helpful because I don’t feel like time is on my side at the moment.

Job hunting is tough, I am not really enjoying the process so far.


February 24, 2016

For the past couple of days my thoughts have been focused on not my issues, but my sister’s.  My sister goes to a JC (junior college) and has plans to transfer to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.  If you know my sister, you know that going to Cal Poly is all that she’s ever wanted.  I hate to brag, but she is an EXCELLENT student, always getting good grades.

The other day she received an email that said she had gotten accepted to Cal Poly!! Here’s the thing, last semester she got a D in trigonometry.  This was huge because she had all A’s and struggled with trig, but worked really hard.  She had a C up until the final, which brought her grade down.  The Cal Poly acceptance email reminded students that they had to get a C or better in all courses, so naturally she freaked out.

Fast forward a few days and she made an appointment with the department she wants to go into at Cal Poly. She explained her situation and asked if she could get more specific information on whether or not she would eventually be accepted despite the D. No answers.  Then she made an appointment with the dean of mathematics at her JC, and explained her situation again.  He told her that he would gladly change her grade, but he can’t because he leaves that responsibility to the instructors.  This particular instructor was not too kind when it came to Emily’s situation.

And so now, due to all of the confusion, my sister is having a rough time. She won’t find out if she is officially into Cal Poly until after the semester is over, but she has to commit to a school by May 1st which doesn’t make any sense in my mind.  College is an opportunity to learn, so why are universities making it so hard to get there in the first place? Watching this whole situation unfold has really disappointed me.  I was a big fan of Cal Poly before, but now that I’ve seen the way they treat and handle transfer students, I have lost some respect for them.

Hopefully, for my sister’s sake, this mess gets cleared up.

February 20, 2016

This week was a roller coaster of emotions, and I mean that in a completely non-cliche type of way.

As I expressed in my last blog post, I was pretty stressed out.  I felt overwhelmed and had a lot on my plate, which didn’t help my mood.  On Thursday, I got an email saying that I basically needed to take 5 classes to graduate.  As a last semester senior, this email gave me quite the heart attack.  I spent the rest of the day scrambling, trying to get things straightened out while at the same time keeping the rest of my responsibilities in check.  Finally, at the end of the day, I got another email explaining that there were a few mistakes and that everything was straightened out.  I was cleared for graduation.

Thank God!

That moment put everything into perspective and I finally realized that very soon, my college experience would be over.  I don’t have immediate plans to go to grad school, so at the moment this is it.  College is coming to an end.  I thought back to all of the times I struggled with required classes.  I transferred twice (crazy, I know) so I almost got used to the constant battle of trying to get my existing classes to count towards graduation.  As of now, I don’t have to do that anymore.  Such a relief, all transfer students can relate!!

As a little celebration, I chose to spend the weekend at home being lazy and relaxing.  I didn’t let myself get caught up in the stress of everything because pretty soon this college experience will be over.

I’ve heard a lot of crazy, stressful transfer student stories, and I honestly think that transfers have it harder than traditional undergrads. Who else thinks so?

If you have a personal story from your experience as a transfer student, let me know in the comments!

February 17, 2016: First Post

Today was a particularly stressful day, so this blog entry may reflect the dreary weather that is gracing Fresno, California.

I woke up this morning feeling extremely stressed out.  I got plenty of sleep last night (10 hours!!!!) which is actually very rare for me, and I have stayed on top of my homework, but something just felt off today.  We all have those days.

At the moment, my brain is this box with holes in it.  I keep trying to cram thoughts, responsibilities, and activities into the box.  For the most part, everything stays in the box. But some things slip through the holes and are forgotten, only to return back into my memory when it is either crucial or too late. I honestly don’t know what I would do without my calendar.

I describe my daily schedule as busy. 7 classes, 2 internships, one part time job, and one weekly volunteering gig.  Some days, I feel oddly free with minimal responsibilities which only makes my mentality anxious.  Other days I am completely swamped all at once and I just want the day to be over. I LIVE for the weekends.

The last semester of college is full of uncertainty. I find myself describing this time in my life as a themed period of doubt and confusion.  Here’s the thing though, everyone is feeling it.  When I am sitting in class, there is a very good chance that others are in my same exact position. I recently read an article on common words of advice for college seniors, and it was littered with phrases like “Stay busy” and “Prepare for the job market early”.  The article had good intentions, but it left me with a blank stare and the urge to yell “Well, duh!” at my laptop. I know that I should stay busy, that’s why I’m doing it; I know that I should be preparing for the job market, that’s why I spend my weekends trolling my own LinkedIn account.  

I’m looking for answers.  I want some kind of validation that once this semester is over, I will be content or at least accepting of the direction that I am going in.

The day’s dreariness was felt all over campus today.  Classroom doors are already plastered with fliers about midterm study sessions and one of my professors even made note of my class’ uncharacteristically low exam scores. It’s slump season and I know I’m not the only one feeling it.

Welcome to The Senior Experience

Hey, I’m Allie.

I am a senior at Fresno Pacific University enduring my last undergraduate semester of college.

The last semester of college is a big one for any student. There is the looming excitement of graduation, the rat race to find a job, and an overwhelming amount of unsolicited questions that are almost impossible to accurately answer.

I have always had a love for writing and the amazing act of sharing lived experience, it gives everyone an opportunity to learn from each other.

That’s where this blog comes in.

I am opening up a space for dialogue, and by sharing my experiences I hope that other college seniors will know that they are not alone in this crazy experience.

Every week I will be posting on Wednesdays and Saturdays to document what I am experiencing through the semester.  All of the ups, downs, and everything in between.

But The Senior Experience won’t be complete without dialogue, which is why I am inviting every reader to chime in! There are no imitations, no requirements, only participation while I go through this experience.

Maybe we can all gain something from this!

So, welcome to The Senior Experience.