Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Livin' the Life of a Sorta-Non-Traditional Student

Hey there. I'm the student that has gotten lost in the group. I'm the one no one really thinks about, and bloggers sure don't post about. I'm the non-traditional, traditional, student. I can't be classified as a normal non-traditional student because I'm not 30 and haven't taken time off from school. But I'm not a normal student because I've never lived in a dorm, or participated in tons of on campus events. I am the non-traditional, traditional student.
1. I don't live on campus, which means I get there right before my classes, and leave right after them. This is hard. I have a job with a set schedule, so I know I can't doddle after class, but this also means whenever I have a group assignment, having to get all the way back to campus just to spend 45 minutes working on a project, I may not be absolutely delighted to be there.
2. I have a job. A job which helps me pay for college, my car, and all of my other expenses... because I'm doing it on my own with the help of loans. When a professor says there's an extra credit opportunity or their office hours are only between X and Y time and those things happen to fall between my work hours... I'm screwed.
3. Just because I'm not involved in a ton of stuff doesn't mean I have never wanted to. For me, I  always expected to play college soccer, and when I got hurt for the last time my senior year, I knew it wasn't in the cards for me anymore. Sometimes, I wish I could have played and had somewhere I really belonged. But I don't, and thats okay too.
4. Friends. All of my high school friends are in sororities, or playing college soccer, or at a school 5,000 miles away. Seeing as how I'm not on campus 24/7, how the hell am I supposed to make "college friends?" You have no idea. I'm so thankful for the few friends that are still around because making new ones, on a college campus, is hard as heck!
5. College is hard, but it's even harder for someone who has had to go to community college, take things a little slower, work tons of hours each week, and maintain some sort of social life. There are so many blogs I follow where the girls are living/making it seem like they have the stereotypical college girl life, and that's just not how things have been for me.
College is so different for everyone but I think a vast majority of people think all college students live the same lifestyle portrayed in movies. It is not that way for everyone! I struggle, a lot. Not because I don't enjoy my life, because I LOVE the life I live. I struggle because it's hard trying to live the life of an every day college student while trying to manage true adult life all at the same time.

23 comments:

  1. It's definitely hard being a non-traditional student. With other engagements, a real job, and school work, it can be hard to keep your head above water. But hang in there friend... it's all worth it!

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  2. Definitely difficult as a non-traditional student. That definitely stinks about the hours and everything- hang in there!

    Courtney//As We Stumble Along

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  3. I moved off campus after my freshman year because I couldn't stand the dorms and I definitely got hit with the issue of meeting "college friends." My group of friends existed around the people that lived in my apartment with me, as well as other students that decided to move off campus and as a result, "commute" to our school. I feel you girl! x Nicole | www.changeanddress.com

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  4. I totally understand the liven situation! I live in a one-bedroom apartment off campus so at night I'm not running to my dorm friends rooms to gossip. The transition can be hard but it sounds like you are super busy! Good luck this semester!

    Carley @ preppylane.blogspot.com

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  5. You go girl! Education is so important and all of the sacrifices will be worth it in the end. Keep plugging along and thanks for sharing a peek into your life!

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  6. Commuting and or working long hours in college is super difficult! My first two years of college were a very stereotypical college experience, I was in a sorority, worked only a few hours a week and could really be involved on campus. I transferred my junior year and had to work 30 hours a week while living off campus. I didn't make any friends and could never really find time to be involved in school. It was so difficult!

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  7. I definitely had the traditional college experience my first year or two (dorm/student living, roommates, sorority, etc), but I eventually ended up moving into non student living apartments to get away from all the craziness that was student housing. I had a few friends who worked full time and went to school and was super impressed with their ability to handle everything...so I definitely commend you for being able to juggle all of that!

    xoxo, Jenny || Breakfast at Lillys

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  8. Glad you brought this up! College isn't the same for everybody. I only lived in student housing for one year, but generally had a 'traditional' college experience and I was hyper-involved in everything (I was exhausted all the time, though). Kudos to you for managing everything on your plate AND keeping your blog updated! Good luck with this semester :)

    Alessandra | blog.pumpup.com

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  9. I can relate to you to a certain extent. I live at home and commute to and from school and don't really spend a lot of time on campus, as I have a part-time job and also full-time blog. Also, friends are difficult! Especially if you aren't in greek life, it's tough. But you are amazing and doing great things!

    Lauren
    The Fashionista's Diary

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  10. All of these are true! I lived off campus, had a job, and constantly did other things that strictly school! It made life fun!

    Nicole // Chronicling Home

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  11. Really enjoyed this insight into what your college experience is like. Mine is very different and I know I'm lucky to not have to work while going to school. I think that everyone should read this to gain some understanding and compassion for students who have to work full time AND go to class AND do homework. It's a lot and I know it's probably not easy to handle. I commend you for being able to juggle all of these things at once!

    Kayla | kaylablogs.com

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  12. I had a very similar experience to you! While I did live on campus I never lived in a dorm, or never got involved in the HUGE greek program at my college. It was a lot harder to make friends this way! I am so impressed that you work while attending school. I wish I had as now I am paying back my student loans (the worst). Keep it up though girl!

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  13. Love this! I did the traditional style, but love seeing the other side
    www.kayleighskloset.com

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  14. So true! Really enjoyed reading your blog post and Good luck with this semester!!

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  15. LOVE this post! I'm a freshman and decided to commute so I could save a TON of money and still work. And honestly, I'm happy with my life exactly the way it is. I love knowing I get to go home to my own bed and do things on my own time and have AC in my house!

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  16. I was a non-traditional student in the truest sense having started college at the age of 43. I worked full time with a teenager at home. My husband was in college at the same time and when our daughter graduated from high school, there were several years which we were all three in college. Being a non-traditional student is definitely hard but you can do it! I would have to tell myself sometimes that when 'this day' is over, I will have accomplished one step closer to the prize. Once you finish, it'll all just be a memory.
    You can do it!!

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  17. Neither of my parents had traditional college experiences, and it was very important to both of them that I did, or at least had the opportunity to. I loved hearing your perspective on college! A lot of my friends took the same route that you have, and it's great to get a better feel for how they experienced college.

    XX, SS || A Little Seersucker Sass

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  18. I always lived on campus when I was in school and never had any idea about what life was like as a nontraditional student! Great insight!

    xo, Alicia | Alicia Tenise

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  19. I definitely understand the life of a nontraditional student, I've been in home school/virtual school since senior high! Good luck on all of your endeavors, you definitely sound like a #ladyboss! :)

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  20. Wow, you go girl! So inspiring, it will all pay off for sure :)

    mollyonthemoveblog.com

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  21. I live on campus so I don't relate as much but I admire your hard work and dedication!

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  22. I completely relate to this as I used to live at home (off-campus), had a job during that time, and did all of this. It was stressful! I'm so glad that I moved on campus and that I've got a job through my university now.

    xo, Kimberly
    www.blogsfordays.com

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