So much is going on this year, work, school, volunteering, finding a new house! I feel like most of my time has been taken up by volunteering. I go volunteer at Risen Christ Catholic School three times a week for almost seven hours each day. I used to go to the homeless shelter every Tuesday and Friday. I must say that I feel that I have gotten more out of my experiences at the Catholic school, I am able to interact with the kids more and feel like I am making a little tiny difference by being there. I walk in and all the kids greet me by my name, I help them with their Spanish reading, their letters, their math skills, and their projects that the teacher gives them. I help out the teacher with getting the students agendas ready and also special projects she gives me to do. I enjoy going there, I get such a fun and energetic vibe! At the homeless shelter I help out in two different places. On Tuesdays I help out with taking care of toddlers and on Fridays I help in the pre-kindergarten classroom. The place where I enjoy helping at the homeless shelter is without a doubt with the toddlers, the pre-kindergarten classroom is more difficult for me. When my shift there starts, the kids are on their way to having lunch, later on it is time to put them to sleep. After that everyone waits for them to wake up and then it is time to wrap up the day and go home. Overall, out of both places, I absolutely LOVE volunteering at Risen Christ and I know that a big reason for that is because I feel more support. The teacher I work with connects with me and makes me feel welcome and comfortable to ask her anything should I need any help. On the contrary when I go to the homeless shelter, I like helping but I do not feel comfortable and that is why it has been difficult for. I know in part it is my fault for not speaking up and letting it be known how I feel in that environment. School, I would not say it has been tough, but there is a lot going on. At least that is what it has seemed like. For my elective class, which is a class outside my major (pharmacy class), I am required to post every week three times a week on a discussion board with a group I am in. The final in that class in a grant proposal regarding a health topic. Another class I am taking has sort of the same set up, but there it is a discussion, quiz, or a combination of the two that is to be done every week. I took the midterm for the class and I did not do so great, when taking the exam I was so lost with the way the questions were worded. On the bright side now I know what to expect of the questions asked on the final. In my internship class I am creating an efolio and submitted my first draft of my capstone paper. Graduation is around the corner and I am more afraid than ever of what the future brings after college. It is a bittersweet feeling, I am happy to be done with school but now I find myself asking “Where to next?”
It has been so long. I would like to call February as the month of trial and error. I say that with regards to as where I was going to do my internship. My GLBTQ course had two options for our class project. One was doing 24 community service hours or doing a presentation. Being the shy person that I am I said I would take on 24 more hours in addition to the 180 hours I needed to do for my internship course. After having been approved for doing community service hours I learned my site would be at Minnesota Internship Center High School, a charter school. The school itself helps students that come from low income families and have various barriers in their way to achieving important goals. My role there would be to tutor the students and in addition I was asked if I would become a college & career advisor as well. I said yes to the college & career advisor position because at that point I still had not found a site to do my internship course and the instructor said it was okay to do them there too. Well I got in there and immediately discovered I was not going to be a good fit. I did not know how to get the kids interested in learning in participating in class. It was hard and very intimidating for me. I spoke to the volunteer coordinator about my concern of me not being able to follow through with what was being asked of me. In the end I decided I was not going to be able to do it, the volunteer coordinator understood. So since I backed out of the community service hours option for my class I was now faced with having to do a presentation instead. I was not complaining though, it took of the stress off my back of having to do an additional 24 hours. After being back at square one and not having an internship site once again, I went on volunteermatch.org and frantically began for places where I could do my 180 internship/volunteer hours. Finally my search ended with taking positions at two sites. One is as an Early Childhood Development volunteer at People Serving People, a homeless shelter in downtown Minneapolis, and the other is as a classroom volunteer at Risen Christ Elementary School. So the stress of not having a site to complete my hours at has been solved, and it was just in time. Any longer and I probably would have risked getting an incomplete in my internship course which I definitely did not want! As far as my other courses, they are all coming along fine at the moment. Graduation being around the corner has not set it but that is not anything new.
Hello! & Happy New Year!
It is my final semester of my college career! That is so insane! I cannot believe it! It turns out I did a whole lot better than I expected last semester. Honestly I was expecting the worst of the worst but I am super glad the outcome was not like that. Over winter break I did not do too much but just spend it with my friends and family, and also working as many hours as I could. This semester I ended up only taking four courses which looking at it in the bigger picture does not really seem like much. Well it doesn’t feel like much right now, we’ll see if that thought changes in five weeks (it probably will )! Three out of my four classes are online which means I am only on campus once a week, I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. So far I have enjoyed what they are all about. Two of my classes require that I complete service hours in the community. For one the requirement is 2-3 hours a week, and for the other, my internship class, wants 180 hours before the semester is over! I found a site for my internship at CLUES but I am worried that with the hours I am given a week I still won’t be able to come up with 180 total. So as a precaution I emailed my instructor and asked if it was ever possible to switch sites where I could put in more hours. Fortunately the answer was yes! So now I am on the lookout once more. If I want to successfully complete those hours I need to find something in the next week or so, hopefully somewhere in Minneapolis because the location where I am at right now is really far. In addition to that I have also been looking at job postings in my field to see what is available out there at the moment. At the same time though I kind want to pursue a certificate in something else, just to have a plan b. I know I keep going back and forth about continuing my education after I get my bachelor’s but I just want to be as ready as I can be for whatever comes my way in the future, my life after college.
The semester is pretty much wrapped up. I have been finishing up final papers and assignments for my courses. I have also been preparing for final exams which has not been so much fun! Since registration for spring semester has opened I have been messing around with my schedule for what courses I want to take. It is crazy to see how little I have left to graduate. Just an internship and a few more major courses. I am wishing that next semester will be way better than this one. Honestly this has probably been my most disappointing semester ever in the history of my college career. Things outside of school have drawn my attention away a lot this semester, my motivation also went down. My priorities have been messed up and for that I have no one to blame but myself. And now that all will obviously be reflected in my grades which I am getting scared to see as the end gets near. I had hopes of finishing off my senior year stronger than ever but now (at least for this half of the year) that goal is slipping away a little bit. In a little over a month will be my final semester of my college career at the University of Minnesota, I NEED to get myself back on track and remember why I have come this far in the first place. I NEED to finish strong. Another thing that has been consuming me with great fear is life after college. Stepping out into the real world. All I can keep thinking about are “what if’s”! What if I do not land a job right out of college? What if I do not accomplish my career goals? What if I am not successful? This is pessimistic thinking I know but seeing how many others have gone through college and end up not being able to find a job terrifies me! I do not want to come out of college saying “oh what a waste of my time” because I know it shouldn’t be! But still that thought scares me. I see that this has been one of my problems this whole time, worrying about the future too much. I just want to be prepared for what is to come after college.
October has come and gone very quickly.And it looks like winter is already here! It seems as though I have had to go through a process of trial and error with my courses this semester. Luckily I am finally figuring out how to make things work. My course on research which I would hear so many horror stories about from students who had already taken it has not been so bad. It was made out to seem like this class that was nearly impossible to pass no matter how much you tried, but it is not. Yes it does get a bit confusing at times but all I have needed to do was review, review, review, until the material stuck in my head. I have had four exams in that course already. Two I passed with A’s, one was a passing grade, and one I didn’t do so well on but the teacher is dropping the lowest of the five exams we take which is awesome! My parent-child relationships course also had a rough beginning, I took the first exam and was devastated with the result. But things have been picking up, I just got back my result the last exam and it was an A! J In that course I also completed a group presentation project on bullying. After this presentation and everything else that came before it I feel like a big weight has been lifted off of my shoulders. I was taking an Introduction to Criminal Justice course but I decided to leave it in the end, I just was not feeling it. Speaking of criminal justice, I finally got a word back from the Minneapolis Police Reserve telling me that they wanted to interview me which I am really excited for! This could be my first small taste of what it is like to be behind a police uniform. I planned on using that for my internship experience for my major but I don’t think it will count because classes wouldn’t start until March. So I am still exploring options out there. I am really hoping to find something before the start of spring semester so I have enough time to be able to complete my 180 hours of experience. Which reminds my last spring registration is here, it is a scary thought to me. It will be my last semester at the University of Minnesota. A part of me cannot wait to leave and finally get out there in the real world, and the other part is terrified to finally get into it. Although to be honest it still hasn’t even kicked in that I am a senior, maybe once I walk that stage it hit me.
The semester is off to a bumpy start, sort of. Up until a few days ago I was on top of things and everything was going fine. It’s probably too early for me to be worrying over this but the thought of graduation and finally going out into the real world has me scared to death for what is to come in my future. I am scared that I will not find a job, get a start on my career, and let myself and everyone around me down. I am scared that I will not succeed in accomplishing my goals. Sometimes I just want to throw in the towel and give up on school because I do not feel good enough. But then I think to myself it would be foolish to give up now when I have come so far. My older peers were right when they warned that college only gets harder, it might seem like less work at times, but the effort that has to be put in to get a good grade is so much more! Last spring semester I was finally able to get on the Dean’s List for the first time ever, and I’m really hoping that can repeat itself this semester. Thankfully that goal seems attainable at the moment. All my classes have been going well so far except the exam I took for one yesterday has me a little anxious. It was an exam with the majority of questions being essay ones. Some questions were difficult to answer, they were the type of questions where I needed to organize and see how I was going to put my thoughts down. The time limit of an hour and fifteen minutes was not in my favor because sadly I am not that type of person that gets their thoughts in order quickly. But other than that everything is looking good. I have also begun the search for my internship that I will need as a requirement for my major to graduate. I had sent my police reserve application to the Minneapolis Police Department back in mid-August, but I never got a word back. Now I am exploring other options which Brea is helping me with! There is a government and non-profit job fair coming up at campus in the next few weeks which I also plan on taking advantage of. There is so many things I have to care of this semester in order to be fully prepared for my final semester. Sometimes I do not know where to start…but we’ll see how everything plays out for me.
I have wrapped up my junior year of college and I’m starting to get this scared feeling inside of me. Towards the middle of the semester I started to believe this semester was not going to turn out well. Well I am happy to say it did, it exceeded my expectations actually! I did well on all my final projects and exams. I got my GPA back to where I wanted it and I even got placed on the Dean’s list for the first time in my college career which I was extremely excited about. I hope I can keep this going going into my senior year because it feels great! Going into my senior year I am really starting to freak about life after college. My degree is not a typical one and not many know about the field so I’m scared that finding a job will be that much harder. Once I graduate I plan to continue going to school to get a certificate in Law Enforcement. The program I am looking at is st Metropolitan State University where classes would be held in the evenings and weekend mornings so I could still be able to hold a full time job. After completing that certificate I am then able to take POST licensing exam to get licensed as a peace officer. My goal is to become a police officer and then keep building myself up from there. I’m probably getting ahead of myself with all this planning I am doing but I am someone who likes to have a plan and have an idea of what they are going to do next. Hopefully things turn out how I am planning even though that rarely happens. This summer I plan on working as much as I can to raise money for my possible trip to Puerto Rico during winter break. I am also taking three summer courses. If I get a call back from the Minneapolis Police Reserve I will also focus on that as well. I am so pumped to finally be in my final year and college but like I mentioned before I am also worried and scared about what the future holds in store for me. I’m hoping it’s nothing but positive things! 🙂