How Grad School is Giving Me a Second Chance at the College Experience

How Grad School is Giving Me a Second Chance at the College Experience

College has almost become a rite of passage. We all think of the typical college experience and hope ours will be some of the best years of our lives. I’m a very shy person so although I liked my undergrad experience, there’s a lot I held back from. As my senior year ended, I regretted not being part of more things. I never thought that going to grad school would give me the opportunity to live through the college experience again. I go to a school where graduate students can participate in the same things as those in undergrad.

This whole year, in general, I’ve been trying to do new things and step out of my bubble. So I decided that if I’m going to do grad school, I might as well go all out. It has shown me that grad school can give me another opportunity to experience college and it’s been quite the adventure. Here’s how grad school is giving me a second chance at the college experience.

All of the Events

One of the main things I missed out of undergrad was all the late night events. As a commuter, I didn’t want to stay at school longer and tried to leave as soon as I can. That’s something that now I see was completely on me and I should’ve tried to participate a bit more. So whenever I see an event on campus, I push myself to go even if I go by myself. I got to cross off going to a concert by myself and it was fun! So excited to go to more activities and games. Let’s be real, college sports are great!

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Networking is huge! I definitely missed the mark on this as an undergrad but I’m taking full advantage of it now. I’m also taking time to meet with my professors and build relationships with them, which helps in the long run because they have so much knowledge. Usually, I focused so much on working through undergrad that I would miss key opportunities, so this time I am making sure to connect with people.

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Knowledge is Power

This time around I’m truly valuing my classes. I’m actually digging deeper into the content instead of just trying to get a passing grade. It’s actually really great because I feel like I’m getting my money’s worth this time. This is what college is all about and I’m excited to feel like my degree will have value.

Part of Something Bigger

The school I chose is significantly bigger than where I did my undergrad and that has its perks. There is a rooted loyalty and history that makes it so fun to be part of. I feel like I actually have school pride, which is something new for me I always thought I was too cool for that. But now I get how people get passionate about the college they attend. It’s really cool to feel part of something bigger!


What do you think about the typical college experience? Is it something that interested you or something you avoided?

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5 thoughts on “How Grad School is Giving Me a Second Chance at the College Experience

  • I’m glad you are making the most of grad school! I loved being an undergrad and had a good group of friends that I hung out with regularly. Even though I am shy, I was comfortable there. However, I went to grad school much later (in my 30s) and although my social life wasn’t as active (partly because I had 3 kids,) my grades were great and I learned so much more.

  • mmm that knowledge-is-power one really resonates with me! In undergrad I had the “get through this ASAP with the least amount of effort it takes” mentality, which means I probably wasn’t getting the most out of my classes!

  • I’m so glad you are able to experience some of the things in grad school you weren’t able to in undergrad. I am currently in law school and I am trying to experience and appreciate the things I didn’t in undergrad!

  • It’s so funny because as I read this I couldn’t have agreed more! My undergrad was the exact same – I commuted and just wanted to LEAVE! Haha! I eventually opened up and am so glad I did, but it isn’t always easy! So glad you’re having a better experience and are doing more – it’ll be worth it!

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