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  The Wonders of College, Part I:
By Darra Clark
iHigh.com College Correspondent

News Story 34388 Image I suppose it's customary to begin with an introduction... My name's Darra Lynn Clark, and I'm a sophomore English/Religion/Southeast Asian Studies major at Arizona State University (go Sun Devils!) I'm originally from Lexington, Ky., and having written for iHigh over the summer as an intern, I suppose it won't hurt me TOO badly to write something that's not a poetry explication. What else? Things about college that I love: my boyfriend, my roommate, my American Lit. class, my Hinduism class, Arizona weather, the freedom. Things about college that I hate: the showers (which refuse to stay at one consistent temperature EVER), homework, trying to make everything fit into my ridiculously crowded little life.

Well, now that we all have a vague idea as to who I am, I guess I can tell everyone a little bit about my life 2000 miles from home. Because, obviously, everyone's out to learn from my oh-so-huge 18 years of acquiring wisdom. Let's see what I've learned thus far:

Lesson 1). If you get the chance to talk for two hours after class to your professor, take advantage of it. I've learned all kinds of things this way, things that will probably stick with me a lot longer than the things I picked up in lecture.

Lesson 2). Never turn down food. EVER. Food is our friend. Food is also, it turns out, expensive. The first two weeks of college consists of a mad rush of people offering you food at orientation-type things, followed by the sporadic "Honors College Dinner with the Dean" or "Welcoming Jonathan Weiner Hors D'Oeuvres at the Volleyball Court" or "Our organization will give you pizza to look at our table." EAT all the food that comes your way. The freshman 15 is attractive...

Lesson 3). TIME MANAGEMENT! This should probably be lessons 1-50. Only by carefully cramming everything into my little life did I pull off 18 hours of credits with a decent GPA last semester. By carefully not planning time to take care of my work this semester, I am succeeding in sending said GPA down the toilet. Time management can be your greatest friend...or your worst nightmare.

Lesson 4). Money is Satan.

Lesson 5). Explanation of Lesson 4: You will never have as much money as you need/want. Therefore, you must be somewhat practical with what money you do have, else the oh-so-friendly Student Services people will beat you down searching for your housing payment.

Lesson 6). Be nice/respectful/etc. to your professors. Because sometime around spring, you'll start to realize that you want to apply for departmental scholarships, internships and all sorts of other college-only goodies. And guess what everyone wants with your application? Recommendation letters. Hence, it is a very good idea (A VERY GOOD IDEA, in fact) to talk to your profs during office hours, speak out in class, pay attention, do your reading, work on your papers...make sure, basically, that your profs know who you are (in a good way. It defeats the purpose if they know you because you're the one who keyed their car).

Lesson 7). Don't be stupid. Things that fall under the category of "being stupid" (these have all happened in my dorm this year): Stealing construction vehicles. Smoking in the building, in front of the hall director. Getting so drunk that you pee on someone else's computer. Taking so many vitamins that you have to call Poison Control. Putting off paper writing to play Diablo II. I repeat, these are what's known as BAD IDEAS. We DON'T do these things, because their consequences are unpleasant.

Lesson 8). Remember to have fun. College is big, serious, work-intensive stuff. But it's also supposed to be fun. When else are you EVER going to get away with the stuff you can get away with in college? ĪTil next we meet!

Article provided by iHigh.com

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