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If you could redo college, what would you do differently?


I would have made more effort to create a stronger personal relationship with my professors. I should have pushed myself outside my comfort zone to approach them after class and ask more questions to really benefit from the knowledge they have. Katie Petruzziello

One thing I would likely have done differently is to try more things I'm not great at.... in college I knew I had a knack for certain courses or activities and I dove deeper into those, but college is the time to try something new and maybe be surprised by something :) Katherine Clair-Kulkarni

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268 answers


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Edmond’s Answer

Two things: (1) I would have tried to convince one of my professors to be my mentor; (2) team up with other students for study and homework. It's OK to study on your own but find one or two other students who are better than you are in a given subject and do some of the harder homework together. In that setting where we explain the topic verbally, the brain functions much better.


I agree with the study group comment! I did this only in the very last year of my university career and it made the struggles of nursing school much easier to bear and enhanced my academic record as well. Katherine Deutsch

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Marina’s Answer

Mireia,

Personally, I would be more focused, waste less time and get more sleep. Sometimes in college you become overwhelmed with new found freedom and experiences, that it's easy for your studies to become less of a priority. It's good to be mindful of that and keep a schedule of the work you need to accomplish and stick to it.

Thank you so much for your advice! Mireia R.

You're welcome. Best of luck! Marina Cubias-Castro

STUDY ABROAD!!! Kristen (Field) Manfield

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Kim’s Answer

Well, honestly, I would have enjoyed life more. You have your whole life ahead of you to be saddled with adult responsibilities. I would have gone out more, explored new and different things, and taken the time to be a kid. I was a nerdy, goody two-shoes who never got in trouble. While I do NOT advocate doing anything illegal that will potentially jeopardize your entire future life and career, it is important to learn how to socialize and relax. In fact, socializing is actually a required skill for successful networking and career-advancement. Everything in moderation!

Kim

Thank you so much for your insight! Mireia R.

I couldn't agree more with you Kim. College is the time to not only discover yourself , but make everlasting memories. You have put across the answer beautifully. Kudos. Priyanka Agrawal

Though i agree with your answer, sometimes i feel like i should have utilised it a bit for efficiently. I've spent like 80% of the time making memories and 20% to actually study. Looking back, I feel that i could've probably pushed the needle a little towards studies as well. Not that I'm not happy with where i am but just a thought. Surendra Kanala

Agree!! Take it seriously and get the work done, but this is a time in life where you aren't saddled with too much real life, so enjoy it --- wisely!! Tony Frank

Part of me regrets not exploring the area outside of my college campus, it's easy to get sucked into the college bubble- it's all about finding a balance of having the undergrad experience but still making the most out of where you are studying. Sandra Tichy

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Kaelynn E.’s Answer

My biggest regret from college is not looking into a study abroad program. Projects, homework, taking classes, all of that will continue throughout your career, but traveling is something that will continually give you new perspectives. When you get out into the "real world" you will find your time is much more limited (if you thought that was even possible), so try to make the most of your entire college experience in the most rewarding ways possible.

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Matthew’s Answer

I would have built a broader network. Nowhere else do you have such easy access to people with such different backgrounds, interests and aspirations. One thing I have learned after college is that you have no idea how a relationship or interaction in the past will generate an opportunity in the future. Your life experiences will be more meaningful if you are open to expanding your network and the journey will be infinitely more exciting.

I agree, Matt! Always try to befriend as many people as possible to learn from them and be a helping hand - you never know how you can help each other in the future! Sandra Tichy

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Christina’s Answer

I would have gotten more involved in the school itself- student government, clubs, etc. This would have given me a more well -rounded experience and an opportunity to meet different people. I went to school with a lot of my friends and we had a great time, but meeting other people would have given me an opportunity to get different perspectives. In addition, I would also have connected with more of my professors to gain some professional mentorship. #liveandlearn


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Amanda’s Answer

I would have taken part in more activities and used all the services that were offered. I was too focused on just the work. I think I missed out on a lot.


Thank you for sharing! Mireia R.

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Jenna’s Answer

I would have focused harder on my language classes, I would have studied abroad during the semester, and I would have been more involved- I wish I had participated in more events, organizations or volunteer activities. I really value the friendships I created in college- I would have worked harder to cultivate more of them.

Thank you for your insight! Mireia R.

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Eugene’s Answer

As you progress through your career, we tend to focus on getting jobs done and working to achieve stretch goals. Time to dedicate to Learning becomes harder, so firstly, I would appreciate the time at college.

Secondly, sometimes we are too hard on ourselves on trying to achieve a grade. You only have a certain amount of energy, so be clear on your outcomes ie. Grade can be necessary vs I'm just here to build a skill.

Thirdly, I would not focus on studying something to get the big $$$. This doesnt mean to ignore it but don't forget to feed the soul and explore different subjects. Experiment don't be afraid to fail.

Colleague is great to develop your thinking and build relationships. It takes practice. I wish I had better habits. Read more, write more papers without trying to make it perfect. Journalling is another great too to create clarity of thought. These give you great foundations to build upon and then you spend most of your energy growing, instead of trying to catch up :)

Eugene recommends the following next steps:

journalling

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Manu’s Answer

I will try to develop my inter personal skills/communication/collaborative skills.

Try to invest time in some sports/yoga/dance.

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Lauren’s Answer

What a good question! I loved my experience but I think I would have made an effort to study abroad. I love to travel now, but I think the experience of living somewhere totally different for a while would have been incredibly valuable. I also would have studied a language more seriously (I took one semester of Spanish).

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Lisa’s Answer

1. Have an accountability buddy. Transitioning from high school to college can be tough when skipping a class is now an option (really, it shouldn't be because you fall behind quickly).

2. Use your school resources! Placement tests, checking in with career counselors to ensure you're staying on track. Think about your major, and what type of real life job/career you will be able to find after you earn your degree.

3. Prioritize studying over balancing study with work. Most of us need to balance working while going to school, but the coursework should come first. I'd try to find a job where I could study at work if possible.

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Sandi’s Answer

I would do a few things differently, but most importantly:
1. Study a subject that provides me a hard skill and do supplemental read for the soft skills!
2. Read more books on how to apply the skills I learned in class.
3. Develop organizational habits that will help substantially as I begin my career.

* I wish someone had told me #1!

Agree! I wish I took more college classes where I would apply them to my career and every day life. I understand how colleges require you to take certain courses before you graduate, but I found a couple of them pointless. I wish some college programs offered more flexibility (or at least the college that I went to). Sandra Tichy

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Jasanpreet Kaur’s Answer

Two things:

1. Completion of SHRM and SAP HR certification. This was told to us while we were in the final year but at that time the relevance of these certification was not known to me.
2. Now after having 5+ years I feel like I must have written some papers to publish with the help of professor. I am certain, that would have been a great learning and add on value.


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Nagendra’s Answer

Good Question. Life doesn't give an opportunity to role the time back .

If at all i get an offer to do it , i want to do it from High school level. Since that one particular subject mark pulled me down in getting admission to the college of my wish.


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Emilio’s Answer

Hi there!!

College was a great experience for me, but I wish I took more online classes at community colleges. This would have saved me money and allowed me to focus more on my upper division classes.

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Danielle’s Answer

This is a great question! So many students do not stop to think about the ramifications of the degree they are pursuing or even the college they are attending. I think it is important to think about the big picture when making these decisions. What does the job market look like? What types of jobs will be available to me? I would recommend shadowing someone in the field you're interested in pursuing. Understanding what the day to day responsibilities of a job can be really enlightening and help you to understand what you;re getting into.

Best wishes!

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Lois’s Answer

If I were to redo college, I would have focused on developing more mentors. As a first generation college student, I would have benefited from mentors working in different areas of business and would likely have pursued a Finance major which is my current field. I also worked several part-time jobs at once in order to pay tuition and avoid student loans and would recommend a little more balance between work and school.

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Aaron’s Answer

I would study my personal likes, beliefs, core values, and strengths more. I would then choose a major and target careers that aligns with my highest ideals for fulfillment in life. I would simply answer the question, "what is it that I would do in my career daily that would bring a smile to my face at the end of each day, no matter what the challenge?"

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Dee’s Answer

I wish I would have stayed in college when I first began right out of high school. I dropped out after a year and that put my college career on hold for about 20 years. It's way harder to complete your degree when you have a family, job and other responsibilities. If I had listened to my parents about staying in school it would have been a lot easier to finish and have my degree. I have an amazing job now but possibly could have had this amazing job earlier in life with my degree.

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Rachel’s Answer

I would have gone in with less intention of "what I wanted to be when I grew up". I would have spent more time and energy learning about what I'm good at and what I enjoy doing and figured out how to make a career out of that. I also would have networked more.

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Veena’s Answer

I wish I was less stressed and incorporated exercise, mediation, and yoga into my routine more.

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Tiffany’s Answer

I would have tried to live on campus longer! I moved off campus early to save money but in the end, the costs were pretty similar being on and off campus. Being off campus also made it harder to connect with people, join activities, and get to my job. If your situation allows, being on campus would be more engaging/fun!

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Capria’s Answer

I would do two things differently. First I would live on campus so I could be more involved with activities that would go on outside of school hours. The second is I would look for a semester or year long study abroad as it was one of the most significant learning experiences that I have ever had.

Capria recommends the following next steps:

Be more involved: join a club or start a club
Study Abroad: Don't worry about the costs, the experience is more than worth it!

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Erich’s Answer

Great Question: When starting off in college, pick a useful and well rounded major which may be applied to almost any career; such as Business Administration! Don't choose a specialized or random major unless you have a very specific career your are set on. I personally majored in Recreation Administration because I had no idea at the time what I wanted to do with my life and it seemed like a somewhat interesting and easy degree. It has been embarrassing for me over the years to have that listed on my resume instead of Business Administration. There are a lot of unknowns and uncertainties about the future when in college and many careers end up heading in a direction completely different than where originally planned.

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Alicia’s Answer

If I could redo college, I would get involved with clubs and organizations that interested me sooner. When I first got to college, I made friends with the people in my dorm, but didn't get involved on campus until the end of my sophomore year. I met some of my best friends in clubs that interested me like Habitat for Humanity and Beta Alpha Psi, and these people had a lot more in common with me than people that were assigned to the same dorm as me. College is a time to get outside your comfort zone and meet new people that will be a part of your network for the rest of your life, so definitely jump at the opportunity to try new things and meet new people.

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Darryl’s Answer

If I were able to redo college, I would have joined more on campus clubs and organizations to develop relationships and for networking. Also, would be a plus on your resume. A regret I have is that I didn’t apply for any internships. Once you have an idea about what kind of job/career you are looking for, internships are a great way to get into a company, learn the ropes, and possibly set yourself up for employment after college.

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Zhu’s Answer

My understanding is, you are trying to find some useful advice for your college life right?

In my opinion, no matter what I answer to this question, It always is a supplement for my achievement based on my experience. It's for myself, not others. Thus is not instructive to others. Everyone has his/her own aspiration, you may find the right way to spend your time only based on your own. What do you want to be? Usually, we know what is the right thing to do, but we just cannot control ourselves, we know we should read more books, we should focus on knowledge, we should study harder, don't waste time. But the entertainment is more attractive, those electronic games, those movies and TV series, and we are easily persuaded by ourselves that I can master my life, spend some time to relax will not have any bad impact.

So don't ask others, just ask yourself. what do you want to be? what do you want to get in that period? everyone has a different answer, but the answer is for himself and will help him to know, what he should do.

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Amber’s Answer

If I could do anything all over again, I would not have lived off my student loans. I worked full-time throughout my time in college, but made minimum wage, so it made it difficult to be able to afford everything. My husband & I paid for our own schooling, we didn't have any help from our parents to pay for college, so we took out student loans. We also took out private student loans, on top of what the school offered. If I could do it over again, I wouldn't have taken the private student loans because they have different rules for repayment vs. federal student loans. Private student loans do not allow you to put them into deferment the way that federal student loans allow you to do when you're struggling to repay them.

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Priscilla’s Answer

Hey Mireia,

Great question! I think the three biggest takeaways I had from college were:

1) Study Abroad (if you can)! I know it can be expensive and challenging to coordinate your schedule around an international trip, as well as missing a semester at your actual college, however, my greatest memories were from studying abroad. And, there's not another time in your life where you could really live in another country(ies) while gaining an education.

2) Say Yes to doing everything. My parents gave me this piece of advice when they dropped me off at college, and I said yes to new friends, new adventures, and new opportunities instead of staying in or constantly studying (although, this is important!) and it really made my transition into college seamless.

3) Get a Part-Time Job. This enabled me to build my resume, gain work experience, and create a network prior to stepping into adulthood. This also set me apart during recruitment. I actually had several part-time jobs throughout college and my favorite was working for professors in various departments at my university. The connections I made with them and the work experience I gained still remains with me today in my job at PwC.

Best of luck!

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Karen’s Answer

I would be more curious & open to learning about all the wonderful experiences that are out there. Take the time to experience things that challenge you, really open you up to different ways of thinking & different cultures. That will help you identify the things that motivate you & the things you are good at.

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kevin’s Answer

There are a lot of great ideas here already. A few areas that I would highlight are:
– Connect with job placement resources to start getting experience right away. It almost doesn't matter if it's in your field, you'll learn how to interact as part of a team and build experiences you can speak to in interviews and use to guide your future job searches.
– Study abroad opportunities might take you off the track for a bit, but will broaden your understanding of people and culture while giving you experiences that will last a lifetime.
– Similar to study abroad, explore courses/events outside of your specific field of study. You'll find connections with people you won't run into as your life and work narrow your exposure over time.

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Avi’s Answer

I would have focused my efforts on getting international exposure in addition to my business studies. In the business world, what matters is not just what you know, but also how to put what you have learned into practice.

Different cultures have different ways of practicing business principles. Getting an internship internally or studying a course abroad would have allowed me to gain a higher appreciation of business practices across cultures.

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Ruben’s Answer

Hello Mireia,

To be honest, I would not change a thing. I had the time of my life. I was able to meet lots of new people. I was active with many clubs and organizations. Travelled throughout the US attending conferences and meeting more people. I also worked as an intern for Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) for six months and received school credit. I also played intramural sports on campus. This social aspect of college was possible due to great time management. Time management was key in having time to do all the things I wanted to do and still do good in school. I surrounded myself with good people and always took care of business/school work. I guess one thing I would like to have done would be study abroad in Italy or Spain. Other than that, I would do everything exactly the same all over again. Great times, great memories, and great friends...

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Mike’s Answer

Hello Mireia!

Hindsight is 20/20! If I could re-do college, what would I do differently?

For me, two things -
1) go to a school close(r) to home
2) invest more time talking to school counselors, and seeking job opportunities (in High School, and during College) which align with the field I believe I'd like to get into for a career.

I started my college career at Ohio State University, while my family was stationed at an Air Force base in Hawaii. The separation was difficult, but manageable. Looking back though, I would have optioned to go to a school closer to my family as I missed out on the opportunities to spend holidays and breaks with friends and family.

Finally, I changed majors after my first 3 semesters of school as I found a passion toward sciences and mathematics, and also architectural sketching. I choose an engineering path, but looking back, would have preferred architecture as the end result would be very satisfying to see something you're working toward actually result in a tangible entity people will use, like schools, office buildings, etc.

My best advice is to talk to others about the careers they choose, seek to see if that is something you'd be interested in doing, then find opportunities to immerse yourself (like a summer internship/job) into the opportunity to get a feel for the work, the industry, and culture, and see if this aligns with your interests.

Hope this helps! Best of luck!

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Jaclyn’s Answer

I would have gone abroad or travelled further from school to broaden my perspective


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REED’s Answer

As a full-time student, I didn't dedicate much time to working other than some part time jobs and as a result, I wasn't able to make a dent in my student loans until I started my career with Verizon.

If I had a re-do, I would've began working for a company that has a really good tuition reimbursement program. A lot of big companies have tuition reimbursement as a built in benefit of working for them (like Verizon).

This may have been a bit more difficult managing work/school but in the long run I would've paid much much less for my school out-of-pocket.

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Michele’s Answer

What a great question ... I would definitively invest more time networking, giving back to the community and focusing on self development. There are so many opportunities, you now have time to explore, travel, meet new people and make a difference; take advantage of the time you have and help others. If i could go back i would definitively join the peace corps and travel the world before jumping into corporate America!


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Darrell’s Answer

I would do everything different. I would first make sure I truly understood the opportunity the was in front of me. I would build as many positive relationships as possible for great networking after school. I would focus more on my learning and understanding of my major. But above all not let it stress me out as much and enjoy every moment.

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Denise’s Answer

Hi Mireia! That is definitely a good question. Looking back, I definitely should have stressed less about school and the future - despite how cliche that sounds. I was active in organizations and clubs my freshman and sophmore year but was not as much in my last two years and that was when I felt the most empty. So I would suggest instead of joining many orgs, just narrow it down to one or two that you enjoy (and does not have to be related to your major) and focus on making an impact there! Make friends and welcome in the underclassmen when the time comes. School and career paths will fall into place eventually. Everyone else also does not know exactly what they want. So just enjoy your time there before you move onto your next phase in life! Best of luck!

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Kendrall’s Answer

There isn't much I would change about my college experience except for one thing - I would focus more on getting tangible professional experience. I majored in what I wanted to, and I'm happy with my decision. I created amazing relationships with people I still know and trust today. I did my best to balance fun and work, and I'm happy with the experiences made. The one area I didn't get what I should have was with internships, apprenticeships, etc. Granted - I was a college football player, and we were basically forbidden from having 'real' jobs when I played. That said, if I'd known then, what I know now, I certainly would have used that time to get more experience under my belt.

When you graduate, you'll be asked questions like, "What's your experience with ........" or "Have you ever.........". If you take the time to get some of those experiences (in your field of interest) before you graduate, you'll be much more competitive.

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Patricia’s Answer

Such a FUN question. Ohboy if I could redo college. College is suppose to be a time to meet new friends and have fun. There are sororities to think about, new friends to meet, parties; extra curricular activities - you are able to choose everything and there is a great deal of responsibility and time management. Unfortunately I started later in life and changing career paths. I enrolled in the BSN-RN program and what a program that is. It takes all of your time (and sleep). I didn't have much time for football, tailgating parties and the like due to it was such a rigorous program and consumes all of your free time. I attended college during the summer months too while in the program (year round) and only saw my friends at Christmas. But I wouldn't change anything at this point. I have my BSN-RN degree and that is the door to all possibilities in this life. So sacrificing football games and sororities for my degree is a good thing. Thank you for such a wonderful question and enjoy your education. Choose wisely and don't allow anything to take you from the path of the 'good life'. Surviving college takes a lot of hard work but once you have your degree no one can take it away from you. Cool huh!


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Alex’s Answer

I think I would take advantage of all that a college has to offer. I was so focused on my studies that I missed out on numerous extra-curricular activities. Obviously you need to be focused but setting aside some time for other interests will be beneficial in the end.

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Ed’s Answer

+1 to Edmond's answer - I'd have explored more the students and teachers to get more out of my studies. I'd also have tried to keep in touch with them as this is a strong networking opportunity.

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Tamecheo’s Answer

If I could redo college, I would do the following differently. With that said, my path was my path because it made me the person I am today. Choose your path wisely.
1. I would have taken advantage of my career advisor's office hours during my freshman year to ensure I was on the exact path regarding my major once I selected it as I started "Undecided".
2. I would have researched majors, salaries, and did some job-shadowing to ensure I was on the path which would make me happy and earn a decent starting salary. I did not understand the important of this until I was older as once you’re an adult you will constantly do this. If you get it right in the beginning, you are ahead of the game.
3. I would have studied to retain the information rather than memorize to obtain optimal grades. Looking back, graduating with honors does not have as much meaning as being able to recall what I learned during my 3.5 years of college until graduation.
4. I would have participated in more extracurricular activities as my focus then was work-study, part-time job, study groups, and my boyfriend. Looking back, I missed a lot of my college life experiences. (Moderation in everything is ideal)
5. I would have taken Spanish more aggressively rather than just one summer school course. I would have immersed myself in the language to become bi-lingual.
6. I would have done an internship, but I don't recall even knowing about internships then. Internships allow you to get your foot in the door for a job and even possibly a career after earning your degree. Employers want experienced candidates, not just those with a degree.
7. Listen to those older than you that are doing well for themselves. Be humble to take the advice they are giving as they know what they are talking about because they have been there done that. Learn from their mistakes and do not repeat them. Trust me, you will be them one day speaking to the youth as it's a never-ending cycle.

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Samuel’s Answer

I would become involved in the entrepreneurial community as early as possible and start a business sooner. I didn't get involved in the entrepreneurial community till my senior project, and it was literally life changing in many ways. There's a reason universities are the breeding ground for so many startups - having access to some of the world's best equipment, technology, software, and last but not least, minds, is such a massive opportunity, that if someone is focused and uses the available resources and support, they can truly change their life.

Samuel recommends the following next steps:

Join your entrepreneurial community.
Start a business

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Ryan’s Answer

Hi Mireia, I would definitely be a lot more mindful about organizing my time. You are in charge of how you want your life to be. Be mindful of creating a solid work/life balance. I always find that having a planner was very helpful. I feel that writing everything down makes your goals more tangible.


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María José’s Answer

Hi,
I would be more focused on what i wanted to accomplished. There is time for everything, but if I would have focused more on my objectives, I would have done things in a better way. And sleep is a better way to get those objectives done with a good result... so, i would have slept better and more hours :)
Best regards!

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Wes’s Answer

I love my college years and loved the whole college experience. The one thing that I would is that I was always focused on what it took to get the best grade in a very competitive way. I would have enjoyed the learning process more. I also look back and think that I really did not have context for how I could apply what I was learning or why it was important. I think working first and having a better understanding of business may have allowed me to better apply what I learned earlier in my career.

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rani priya’s Answer

Read many more books from diverse fields. Law, politics, business, self-help, history, economics and whatever one can get his hands on. Developing a stellar reading habit during college days keeps one in good stead throughout his life.

Focus more on skills, and less on jobs and salary figures. College placement continues to be the buzzword among Indian youth. But I sincerely believe that focusing on skills, instead of jobs, is a more worthwhile option in college. If you have the requisite skills, you are bound to be hired.

Create useful networks and safety nets. Networking does not mean fawning up to every senior or alumni from your college. You need to know the contacts who may be helpful and ‘why’ they may be helpful.

Take more free online courses from platforms such as edX. These are potential goldmines of knowledge, which most Indian college goers sadly never make use of. Narrow minded focus on securing a ‘job’ leads to people missing out on exploring such self-education tools.

Not try to fall in ‘love’ just because every one else seems to be in love. In college, most of us are heavily influenced by Hindi cinema and have half-baked knowledge about emotions and relationships. Its advisable to exercise caution before investing too much time, emotion and attention on someone.

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Lizzie’s Answer

I felt like I gave up hobbies, social events, and fun to "do school" like study, homework, lab assignments, and activities I thought would help me get a job post-graduation. I didn't go into the city with friends on some weekends and the big one I regret was that I didn't go to a rally where Hillary Clinton and Obama spoke because I wasn't doing well in 2 classes that semester.

Looking back, my grade would not have changed that much, if at all, had I done those fun things. When you look back at college, you don't really remember so much the assignments or classes or crying in lab (just kidding--I do remember crying in lab at night a little.) You remember the people, you remember the social events, you remember staying up late in someone's room to talk about life or play Just Dance.

So go, have fun. It's all about balance.

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William’s Answer

College is the breeding ground for what doors you will have available to you at the end of the college experience. It sets the stage so it is important to develop and expand your knowledge while figuring out what you would enjoy most to make an imprint. I would use college as a time to dig into further what areas I have an interest in, what are my strengths and all the career paths that would let me leverage those things.

I had an idea what I wanted to do and I knew my strengths and interest. I would have seek more career paths that allowed me to marry my strengths and interest versus focusing on each one individually. From there my best advice is to really spend time to get some experience what you think is a good fit. Try to connect with someone who is in that field and try to explore as many other paths you think would be of interest. From there you will be better prepared to use your time in college to focus on what you want beyond college.

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Marc’s Answer

In one sense, I wouldn't change a thing. I learned to live on my own, received a degree, got a job, and made some life long friendships. The path wasn't a straight line, but the journey was worth every minute.

But in hindsight, a few things I might have done differently...

- researched professions a bit more before starting college. I was definitely naïve on what paths there were. I loved biology in high school, but decided not to pursue simply because I couldn't see making money as a biologist. SMH!

- take more advantage of all the resources and activities offered at a university. Your paying the money, leverage them. There is so much you can do and benefit from.

- and remember it's not all about the academics.

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Abbey’s Answer

If I could do something different in college, I would better balance my time between school work and social experiences. There is pressure to perform well in classes, to get internships, scholarships, and job opportunities, but this does not mean you need to maintain a 4.0 GPA. Of course, prioritize your schoolwork but also carve out time to enjoy hobbies and meet new people. Additionally, I wish I had gotten more involved in campus clubs and activities. Universities offer endless opportunities to get involved, so take time to join a club or team. This is a great way to expand your network and again, make memories. Overall, branch out in college, try new activities, and find a healthy balance between school and fun.

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Wes’s Answer

I loved my college years and loved the whole college experience. The one thing that I would is that I was always focused on what it took to get the best grade in a very competitive way. I would have enjoyed the learning process more. I also look back and think that I really did not have context for how I could apply what I was learning or why it was important. I think working first and having a better understanding of business may have allowed me to better apply what I learned earlier in my career.

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Wenmiao’s Answer

Personally, I would definitely spend more time on traveling and know more new people ! When I was in college , I was always busy with tons of assignments every day, so sad :( ;also I lived at the same city when I was in middle school, high school and college. So I always wanted to travel more cities and know more cultures. It's such a special experience when you go to a city that you know nothing about, you can take time to learn its history and culture. People living there may have a total different daily life from those in your hometown. How amazing it is! Although sometimes it's difficult to keep the balance with studying and entertainment, it's always worthy spending time on traveling and knowing new people:)

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Amber’s Answer

If I could do anything all over again, I would not have lived off my student loans. I worked full-time throughout my time in college, but made minimum wage, so it made it difficult to be able to afford everything. My husband & I paid for our own schooling, we didn't have any help from our parents to pay for college, so we took out student loans. We also took out private student loans, on top of what the school offered. If I could do it over again, I wouldn't have taken the private student loans because they have different rules for repayment vs. federal student loans. Private student loans do not allow you to put them into deferment the way that federal student loans allow you to do when you're struggling to repay them.

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Amy’s Answer

I had a wonderful college experience, but one thing I would change would is I would have studied harder my freshman year. I was 12 hours from home and got involved in a lot of campus activities and should have focused more on academics. I think getting involved in extracurricular activities is important, but there needs to be a balance between those things and the academics portion. I put myself in a little bit of a hole my first semester and it took some time to get that corrected and bring my GPA up.

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Jay’s Answer

If I had the chance to redo college with the wisdom I have now, I would've asked more questions and tried more things. I would've been more involved in clubs, organizations, student body, etc. and raised my hand more in class.

College is that sweet spot between adolescence and adulthood where you can explore and participate without being told what you have to do, but also without any particularly negative outcomes - you might be exhausted from a night of coding, but if it doesn't work the worst thing that happens is that you sleep in until noon and try it again if you want...or don't.

That said, don't miss out on the frivolity too. There aren't many opportunities in life where you get to live with your friends and don't necessarily have to make ends meet.


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Ganesh’s Answer

Honestly, I would love to explore more in learning new technologies, study on how technology can be utilized in solving our day-to-day problems.
Another point is to work closely with teachers in building the content for upcoming students.

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Priscilla’s Answer

Hey Mireia,

Great question! I think the three biggest takeaways I had from college were:

1) Study Abroad (if you can)! I know it can be expensive and challenging to coordinate your schedule around an international trip, as well as missing a semester at your actual college, however, my greatest memories were from studying abroad. And, there's not another time in your life where you could really live in another country(ies) while gaining an education.

2) Say Yes to doing everything. My parents gave me this piece of advice when they dropped me off at college, and I said yes to new friends, new adventures, and new opportunities instead of staying in or constantly studying (although, this is important!) and it really made my transition into college seamless.

3) Get a Part-Time Job. This enabled me to build my resume, gain work experience, and create a network prior to stepping into adulthood. This also set me apart during recruitment. I actually had several part-time jobs throughout college and my favorite was working for professors in various departments at my university. The connections I made with them and the work experience I gained still remains with me today in my job at PwC.

Best of luck!

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Debjeet’s Answer

I would list out what I would like to do differently,if I had to redo college:
1. Be more social and keep networking
2.Learn a lot more on my areas of interest
3.Take part in more student club activities.
4.Keep my lethargy aside and do something productive.

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Rob’s Answer

The answer that is easier said than done is "be yourself." In college, you are/will be pulled in so many different directions. You can belong to different groups, organizations, and teams. Through all of this, it is very easy to forget who you are. You can get swept up in the group identity that surrounds you. So my advice would be two-fold. First, find groups that let you be yourself. In doing so you will not feel pressured to change and instead of being torn down, you are built up in a constructive and healthy direction where you learn and become confident. By being in constructive groups you learn to accept others and almost more importantly, accept yourself. The second piece of this is understanding that even if you surround yourself with the right people that does not mean you won't be challenged somewhere else. So being prepared for anything is also extremely important and ultimately defines you and your character. Holding strong in times of turmoil usually ends up being that moments that define you so weathering the storm is inevitable, but also definitive. In summary, College is hard; surround yourself with people who build you up, but also be ready for challenges and do not shy away. Go towards the fight knowing you will come out stronger. I wish I knew these two things earlier in my college journey.

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Nathan’s Answer

There are a few things I would consider closely when you're in college. It's a big task but it's also a huge piece of your life so have some fun but keep your priorities in line. You're there for an education and that should always remain at the top of the priority list but fun and relationships should be a close second. Relationships should be established with professors as they are the ones at the end of your time there that will likely be writing your recommendation letters. I also changed my major after two years from a biology/chemistry degree to marketing which was a big change and made the last two years stressful in order to graduate in 4 years. I wish I would have taken the time to really assess what I wanted to do and spoke to my adviser more frequently to make sure I was on the right path. Because of that change I didn't have the time to build close relationships with my new professors in the business department and I lost touch with the professors in the science department due to being so busy. So here are a few things I would change.

1. Get involved in your own education, don't prioritize fun over projects and departmental involvement
2. Intentionally develop relationships that will last with your professors, advisers and mentors
3. Use electives to help guide your education path, don't take the easy classes to just get by. An elective course may open your eyes to a whole new field of interest that could change your path

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Richard’s Answer

I would strive for more balance between academic and social life. I was more interested in social aspects than educational so my GPA wasn't a good as it was in High School. Employers for your first job look at academic pursuits, the school and GPA when making their hiring decisions.

Unrelated, but my career started out based on my educational background but took many turns as I grew my networking with people and taking on new assignments.

So, focus on your keeping your GPA up, use the social life to take off the stress of focusing solely on academics and keep in mind what degree you end up with may not be your long term career choices.

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Noorayaz’s Answer

I would do 3 things:

1. Find a counselor or mentor that can help me determine which career paths are best for me to follow. I made some impulsive choices based on no real data. It worked out in the end but I probably delayed my career by almost a decade.
2. I would focus more on grades. I spent more time socializing than studying. The key is treat college like a job. Get up early and start studying, go to class and study in between. Use the evening to relax, just like you would after a day at work. This will condition you to what life after college is like, while ensuring fun and scholastic success
3. I would focus more on staying at campus. I spent 4 days a week at home, rather than on campus. It was fun but I missed out on a lot of experiences because of it.

College can be the best time of your life. Make it that, while setting yourself up for a great life afterwards.

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Lison H’s Answer

For me, It would be staying focused on my class work and not networking with friends. Not saying that networking is not importnat because I have made life-long relationships with alot of friends. I did however, prioritize those relationships over my schiol work during my earlier years. This impacted me in my senior year because I was chasing Cum Laude and was unable to achieve it due to my poor performances in my freshman and sophmore years. THere will be times and places to interact and network but one must stay focused on the task at hand. That level of freedom for a teenager can be very dangerous. Stay focused and always remember why you are there. TO BETTER YOURSELF & YOUR COMMUNITY.

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David’s Answer

Hey Mireia, that's a great question.

If I were to go back to college, I would probably stress less about finding the perfect major/ career early on. I would also make sure I had a better balance between my studies, social life, and get involved in student groups & clubs.

You have your entire adult & professional life ahead of you to figure things out. Too many young students feel pressured to figure out their long term career when they start college. Your career is more of a process than anything, and you might find something that interests you later in your career. Every role you have is going to be a learning experience.

I started school studying to be a Civil Engineer, then switched to Marketing, and now am working in the technology field.

Additionally, college is a place that you have so many opportunities to make lifelong friends and make connections. Taking part in social & academic clubs will also help you make connections to help you find a job after college.

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Gabriel’s Answer

I know this is an older question but in briefly scanning the answers (which are very helpful) I didn't find a scenario that matched my own life.

What would I have done differently? I would not have dropped out/stopped attending/taken a "semester off". I didn't necessarily lack a support system, but I was always kind of independent and my parents kind of let me do my own thing. After three semesters I realized I didn't know what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. It wasn't until many years later that a former high school teacher told me (and take this with a grain of salt, but it meant the world to me) "You rarely go to college to learn a skill or trade - you go to college to learn how to learn."

No matter what...unless there is some really dire circumstance...don't stop. Don't quit. Those letters after your name mean a ton. Do finals and 8:00 AM classes make life a pain? Yup. Suck it up and do the four years. You made it through high school...you can do the same in college. Don't start something you aren't able to finish. (And there's nothing worse than paying on student loans for a degree you never got.) I know...after high school four years seems like a prison sentence - but the rest of your life will be grateful you sucked it up and got it done. Working a full time job and taking one class at a time (took me about six years) just to get a BBA...had I just sought out help from the mentors I had...my life would likely be different. I can not stress enough how important it is to just get that degree. I come from a long line of "English majors" who did nothing remotely-close to their field of study. That's okay...but their degrees allowed them to get jobs in fields and find their passions. And let's be honest - the days of coming right out of college and working for one company until you retire are long gone.

And if any of you are either a fan of or major in the theatre arts...may I recommend "If I Could've Been" from Working.

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Rachel’s Answer

If I could redo college, I would have spent more time studying abroad and become fluent in a foreign language.

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Tabitha’s Answer

Get plenty of rest. You make better decisions and your brain functions and performs so much better when it’s well rested.

EXPERIENCE life. This doesn’t mean party. Attend university and community events that will expand your EXPERIENCE. Seek out an event or speaking engagement that you wouldn’t normally attend. College is about education and experience.

Remember that your tribe will shift. All of the friends you make during freshman and even sophomore year won’t always remain with you. The relationships you build will be life altering and some will stick with you a lifetime. Choose wisely and don’t despair over lost friendships and relationships.

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Jessica’s Answer

I would have had an internship in my interested career field all 4 years instead of senior year. Working on the job can sometimes teach you more than any class in college. Whether it is for a few hours for free/week or a paid-internship, the more exposure to a day-in-the-life, the faster you will grow in the field.

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Patricia’s Answer

Liberal Arts college/English major -- would have taken more business oriented courses and mastered a foreign language.

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Rachel’s Answer

If I could redo college, I would have spent more time studying abroad and become fluent in a foreign language.

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Jamie’s Answer

I would've gone to a cheaper community college for the first two years and then transferred to finish my program. I also would not have worried about hurrying through and just getting done. I'd have taken my time and made sure what I was going to school for was really what I wanted to spend my life doing. I also would've looked and applied for a lot more scholarships. There are tons out there, even within local communities and 12 $1000 scholarships is better than trying for the harder $10k ones.

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Dana’s Answer

Great Question! I would have tried to focus more on what I am passionate about vs what my parents wanted me to major in. When I was in a class I really enjoyed I also did better academically. In additional I would have enjoyed more time building relationships and friendships. Sometimes because I was in a smaller collage campus I would go to class and leave. Sometimes I wonder if I missed that part of the collage experience. If I could do that part over again, I would have studied abroad and also stayed on campus.

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Rajesh’s Answer

A lot of answers to this question are on the mark! If I have to do college all over again, I'll focus more on studies, better network with those seniors to me, learn about personal finance, and "sharpen the saw" as Stephen Covey says, which means maintain your health (both mind and body) by sleeping, exercise, meditation, etc.

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sridhar’s Answer

I would have spend more time in learning history and literature, Students who understand the history and historic mistakes can only take this socitey forward by avoiding the mistakes from the past.


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Spiro’s Answer

I would have enjoyed myself more by trying to be more in the moment and self-aware. I would especially socialize as much as possible and get to really know people and try new experiences. I also would have taken more classes that I found interesting, rather than just focus on my majors. Because the best part of college is the life experience, not the degree and education.

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Richard’s Answer

If i could redo college, will try to understand what companies are looking to recruit from my college and learn more about them. This will help in aligning my choice of the company based on my career goals. Look to connect with the Alumni of the college.


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Tracey’s Answer

Ask for more exposure to the career I'm considering. eg. Coffee chat with someone in that profession ( in person or virtually) ; A day in the life of internships etc.) Studying in said career path to realize later that it's not a good fit is disheartening. Ask more, don't be shy to get out there.

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Carlos’s Answer

Hi Mireia - I would have definitely made more of an effort to build mentorship relationships with more of my professors. Not only would it have made my student experience much more enriching, but also have a larger network to tap into now as a professional.

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Cynthia’s Answer

Great question. I would first take a test of interest and interview people in the fields. Then research the future of that field.


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Norma’s Answer

Hi. I think I would do several things differently.
1. Focus - apply myself more
2. work less hours - working full time plus overtime and going to school full time prevented me from sleeping enough and studying
3. live on campus - I attended what is known as a "commuter school" (live close enough not to live on campus that you can drive yourself - i lived 30 minutes or so away)
4. get more involved - i was a member of student government, but didn't always volunteer as I was interested but not motivated to participate

When planning your future, think about some of these things before you make a decision as to where you will go. :-)

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