College might be overwhelming, but you will be alright

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courtesy of Brynn Kan

Kan (pictured on the bottom right) is posing with a group of friends at UC Davis.

Brynn Kan, Staff Writer

Congratulations to the Class of 2020! You might not be able to walk across the stage in front of your loved ones and shake hands with the principal, but you do get advice from a former Cal High student.

Although my first year at UC Davis has been cut short, I can undoubtedly say that this past year has already been better than my entire four years in high school. 

There is so much I could say. I could talk about the importance of time management and give tips for studying, but everyone has heard this advice since middle school. So if there’s one piece of wisdom I can offer you, it’s to remember one word – persist.    

College will be very overwhelming at the beginning. At orientation you will be bombarded with information regarding your major and all the classes you have to take. You will be in classes full of hundreds of strangers. Your grades will be based solely on a couple of exams. You will have to poop with other people in the bathroom.    

But you just have to persist. And I can assure you that you will be OK. 

You will come to learn that your professors are extremely approachable, helpful and kind even when outside of class, so if you need help, you should go to office hours. Professors are not very serious. In fact they’re actually very laid back. 

And if you don’t believe me, in my psychology class, there were 500 students and my professor had me speak into the microphone so I could talk about how the song lyric “she’s got electric boots” can be misheard as “she’s got electric boobs.” 

Besides classes and professors, you will also have to deal with making new friends and sharing bathrooms. It may take you a bit to start making friends, I know I spent a couple of weeks feeling lonely. 

But things turned out OKy. I asked the girl in the dorm next to me if she wanted to eat dinner together. I found out I had a class with someone on the floor so we sat together for our 8 a.m. and then ate breakfast together. 

They became my closest friends at Davis. Except it was only after I endured painfully awkward meals with them. The people on your floor, and your whole building in general, will begin to feel like a family. By the end of fall quarter, I was taking naps on the ground in the common room. 

Everyone is just as eager to make friends, so don’t be afraid to make the first move. You just have to give it some time and persist. 

Trust me. I wouldn’t have become close to one of my friends if I stopped talking to him after our awkward breakfast. We both had a little bit of milk left in our bowl but felt too awkward to lift it up and drink from the bowl, so we sat there in silence. 

The same goes for the bathroom. I know it sounds funny talking about it, but it really does stress people out. So don’t worry about pooping. People watch videos while they’re in the bathroom and no one really cares. 

But please don’t be one of those people who leave their bits of food in the sink! Everyone thinks it’s disgusting and WILL write aggressive comments about it on the white board in the common room. 

Of course this may all seem like minor worries and you might be disappointed that I didn’t give more practical advice, but I just hope you remember that college is more than just grades. 

College is a new beginning. So I encourage you to have fun, take classes for subjects you’ve never heard of, let your family visit you (they miss you), and lay in the hallway with your next door neighbor. 

So start packing your bags, Class of 2020! I believe in you. 

Brynn Kan was a staff writer for The Californian and graduated in 2019. She attends UC Davis.