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How different is real life from college?

Does college prepare you tot take care of yourself in the 'real world'? Are the skills I learn here pertinent to life after and if not what resources can I pursue to help me in life? college-advice college graduation young-adults life-skills life-transitions

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Brian’s Answer


The college experience is different for everyone. If you do the typical four year college and live in a dorm, it offers the least relevant life experience. But there are so many detours on that experience that you have opportunities to change that. The main goal of college is to teach you how to learn and think critically and give you some of the relevant knowledge for your field of study. It's impossible to give you everything you will need to know. Things that you hopefully pick up along the way are how to work in a team, how to manage your time, and how to balance conflicting responsibilities.

As I mentioned, there are ways to expand this experience to better prepare you for life.
- Having an apartment off campus gives you the real life experience of regular bills and dealing with landlords
- Getting an off-campus job further complicates scheduling and priorities, but gives you more of a sense of real world activities
- A co-op or internship gets you more relevant professional work experience

It is true that there are experiences in college that you won't get in the real world like do-overs on work, but there are some cases where the real world is less strict. For instance, getting a failing grade for missing a deadline is less realistic in all but the most extreme work cases. While there are consequences for missing a deadline, the stakes are not always that high.
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Krishna Chaitanya’s Answer

Real life, as the name says is real. College life is more like a laboratory where you can experiment and figure out whats best for you. Real life challenges need correct solutions in the first go. Sometimes you may get a chance to fix if something goes wrong, but most often you wont.

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Pratibha’s Answer

Hey there!

Colleges will not help you in understanding real life, they help you in just achieving a career path(in most cases). I do agree, college is competitive but not as cut throat as the real world. College is still a safe bubble in which we are put in, where we are still dependent on someone else to take care of us. We do not shoulder all of life's responsibilities and all we have to do is gain knowledge and good grades.

Real life is not as rosy as they portray it in the cine world. Real life involves paying bills, taking care ( feeding, clothing, cleaning among many others) of yourself and several others ( family and friends), making sure your refrigerator is well stocked, balancing your time such that you have work-life balance, spending enough money so that you enjoy and not spending extravagantly and save some aside for the future. It totally sucks, but you will love it.

Let me also tell you, it may seem scary, but this transition is a must for everybody. So do not worry about the future, tackle one day at a time. Be brave, fierce and ready to take challenges on your way and you will definitely fit in this world of misfits.

Pratibha recommends the following next steps:

Create a goal plan. Where do you want see yourself and how do you plan on achieving it.
Make sure that you start, even if you start small on that plan.
Ensure you know and master the art of Time Management.
Do not worry much, everybody messes up.
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Jeanine’s Answer

Hi there! College is a stage in life. When I first started college, I was so shy and afraid to branch out and socialize. I soon realized there were a lot of people in the same boat with me. I joined clubs and made friends quickly. I think that the social aspect alone prepared me for adulthood. I never realized how much my parents sacrificed to make sure that I had a good education until I had to go to college. I learned how to really cook healthy meals, do laundry (the right way), and budget my money. Its important to start those good habits as soon as possible, so that you are set up for success later in life! Good luck!

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Krista’s Answer

'Real life' is just a new stage in life. The most important thing in life after college is finding a good life/work balance. You'll be having more responsibilities and a new daily schedule. Make sure to plan things you love to do when you're off from work. The best advice I can give you is to never stop learning. In college you learn how to do work but how to live your life? There are amazing books that can guide you and even online there is so much knowledge available (Tedtalk, Youtube etc) that can help you to find your passion, how to be happy, how to find the job you'll love. All the best!

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Vijay’s Answer

You will not get multiple chances to do something like you got when you failed in some exams in college.

So whatever you do.... do it with full efforts.