Senior Reflection | My advice to you

My four years at UCCS have been a journey. For those who say college is an adventure, well, they weren’t wrong. I struggled, had fun, faced challenges, but I still managed to earn my B.S. in Business, emphasis in Marketing and finished with honors.  

I went through ups and downs, but I’m proud to be where I am now. I had support from my parents, grandparents, my sister and my boyfriend who helped me realize my full potential and how to achieve it.  

Whether you are currently enrolled or an incoming student, I hope you can learn from my experience to make your time at UCCS better. It’s going to go by quick and you’ll be in my seat before you know it. Here is my advice to you:  

1. Your mental health is important  

I found myself in a place where I lost motivation. Motivation to go to class, finish homework, or even leave my room. I was encouraged to schedule a session at the wellness center, but I didn’t want to talk about anything, and that is something I regret. I lost my grandmother my sophomore year, and it was a challenging time to get myself focused on my studies. 

If you find yourself struggling, utilize the resources campus offers, find what makes you happy and push yourself to get out of your funk. If you feel yourself declining, make plans to hang out with friends or go for a walk outside. Most importantly, don’t allow yourself to feel like your mental health is not important, because it is.  

2. Take chances, don’t be afraid to fail  

Through your journey at UCCS, you will be offered opportunities and sometimes you have to go out of your way to put yourself out there. Whether it’s a promotion you want to apply for or a club you are interested in, you’ll never know if you get it unless you try.  

I took a chance in joining the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Case Competition and it was a great opportunity and experience. I wasn’t afraid I wouldn’t make the team, but I was afraid of what I would think of myself if I didn’t take a chance. 

Apply for that job you want, show your interest in a new promotion, and, regardless of the outcome, do everything you can to make the best of the situation. Don’t think about the “what if’s” and don’t think about being told no or failing. Do what is best for you. 

3. People will fail you, don’t give up  

There will be times when you are given false hope. This happens in your jobs, and it can happen in your classes (especially when working with groups). The most important thing is even when those people fail you, you have to get back up and keep going. Don’t give up on yourself.  

The first time I was let down in a job, I almost gave up. I felt there was no point in trying to continue, and my work ethic declined. I wish I could go back and change that.  

You can’t give up, and no matter how challenging it may be to continue, it will get better. You have the support from your family and friends to get through those hard times. My advice to you is to not let those moments define you. Rise above it and work even harder to show them that you are capable of anything. Prove them wrong. 

4. Attend all the events you can 

UCCS Student Life works hard to put on events for students at the start and end of each semester with a variety of events during the semester as well. Go to the events and make new friends.  

I didn’t attend as many events as I would have liked. I regret not going to more events with my friends and attempting to find new friends. Sporting events are fun and free to attend and it’s a great way to support the athletes of the UCCS community.  

Don’t end your senior year wishing you went to more games or more events. Just go and have fun with your friends. Don’t end your journey at college regretting what you didn’t do.  

5. Just go to class  

No matter how you schedule looks, it can be hard to find the motivation to go to all your classes. Learn from my experience and just go to class. Of course, there are circumstances that prevent you from going to class, but if it’s just because you’re tired or you don’t want to leave your room, just do it.  

You will regret skipping so many classes and it shows when you skip because you start to turn in homework late or you don’t turn it in at all. You start doing poorly on exams and it’s because you didn’t show up. If there is anything you will get 100% in, it’s going to attendance and participation. I will add that missing a class once in a while isn’t terrible, but you can’t make it a habit.  

Final advice to you  

I had my ups and downs at UCCS. I wish I could redo a few things, because there are times I wasn’t at my best and that was on me.  

I would like to go back and fix those moments where I could’ve been better, but I can’t. Do your best through college and finish strong. Finish knowing you have no regrets, and you did everything you could to be where you are.  

Soon you’ll be walking across that stage with a big smile as you receive your diploma. You’ll smile even more knowing you had a great experience and tried your hardest in everything, while still having fun because come on, it’s college.  

Photo by Lexi Petri.