Adulthood ... What a Hassle!

What a Hassle!

By Ana Quintana

Why can't we get out in two years? That is a very good question with many answers.

I believe one of the hardest things for college students is adjusting to the responsibilities of adulthood. That in itself is a dramatic change. All of your life you have been used to being taken care of--the rent was paid for, as were the food, utilities, your clothes, books, etc. You name it, mom and dad were there for you. At least for most of you.

The new responsibilities and adjustments are enormous for young adults. In addition to being responsible for paying your bills, you have to assume the responsibility for your own discipline, making sure you don't overwork or overparty yourself.

Paul Partida claims, "It is really hard to tell yourself `It's time to go home; I have class tomorrow.' You're out there and assume you have no one to answer to."

Out on your own, you have major responsibilities to deal with. Let's begin with getting a full time job, barely being able to survive on minimum wage. You can't cut it if you are completely out on your own, and expect to attend college full time and survive at the same time. That's where a part time job on top of your full time job becomes necessary. At least this is the reality many students must face, according to Partida.

For those of you still at home and who don't really have to work, it might be a bit difficult to understand. But those who do maintain a couple of jobs and try to be full time students (with hopes of transferring in about two years), understand it is not impossible, but difficult. "I'm still pushing it and hoping that I'll be out in a year and a half. That'll be a total of six semesters," says Cristina Cordova, full-time student with two jobs.

This is where overloading yourself might come in. You can't over do it, because there is always the chance of burning out. You can only handle so much pressure and responsibility all at once. I've had my share of semesters where I've burned out and got bad grades. This is one of the reasons I'm still here on my fourth semester, with lots of hope that I'll be out by the fall of 1996. That'll be my wish come true.

A few students I spoke with, who live out on their own, work full time, attend college full time, and yes, are trying to survive full time,have multiple adjustments to get used to. Right when you think you've adjusted, you feel you're burning out and need a small break. So you take less units, and it takes you longer than two years to transfer. Then there's the other side to it. You get so eager to transfer that you overload on units and bomb on most of your classes because you can't handle the overload.

What should we do? Well, many have learned the hard way--who cares if it takes you over two years to transfer? Time is only time! Be relieved of the pressures (for those of you that have more than one job, you know what I'm talking about) and tell yourself how proud you are; that you are trying to overcome the adjustments in your life, and when you complete your education (whether it be four, five, or even nine years from now), you'll be proud of your determination and will take advantage of the many learning experiences.

How corny this must sound, but in the long run it is true. I'll have that to say when I'm a lawyer at 29.

Send EMail to El Vaquero

Return to El Vaquero Home Page.