Freshman year is rarely what is imagined. It might seem like a long time ago, but everyone had distinct preconceptions about the way college should be. The differences quickly become clear between what we think and reality.

As students, we all came into college with clear expectations of what it should be. Thinking about it through high school, we get general ideas from teachers, friends, family, and the media.

Melissa Osborne, English freshman, uses the words “brutal and unforgiving” to explain how she felt classes would be. She pictured multiple films full of panic attacks, exams, all night study sessions, and the stress from lack of sleep.

In a similar way, Marie Hart, speech and theater education freshman, felt that college would feel more like the boarding school she came from. She imagined strict, overbearing teachers that would not take any excuses.  

Osborne said, “I thought every waking moment would be in class or studying, but really I don’t do a whole lot of studying and I am doing fine in my classes. The teachers really want to help you succeed.”

Tamika Taylor, elementary education freshman said, “I thought it would be more wild and crazy. Ya know?” Crazy frat boy parties, random drunk people running through the streets and a lot more partying, she said.

Tyler Karnes, marine biology freshman said, “I expected there would be a few people that I didn’t get along with, but there really isn’t.” Many of us, like Karnes, feel that college is a lot more laid back than first imagined.

So senior, junior, sophomore, or freshman, take a minute to think about what we thought of college before coming and how that vision has changed. It may be surprising what we find.

Tysana Speer is a freshman majoring in speech and theater education. You may e-mail her at