In just under 36 hours, I will finish my last final of junior year of college. I'm actively trying not to think about the fact that next year will be my last year at Rutgers, that a year from now I will be the one thinking about graduation and looking forward to the rest of my life.
On one hand, I'm excited and thankful to be in this place. Since getting to college, I've been worried about not being able to complete my majors on time due to the sheer number of credits they take. Now, I'm down to three classes and two one-credit seminars, plus a thesis. And that's it- then I am done. A part of me is really happy about this. I am finally sure that I can finish both of my majors on time, so, no more worries about not finishing in four years, and having to worry about paying for a fifth year of school.
On the other hand, I can't believe that I've already been at Rutgers for three years. The time has just gone by so quickly. I volunteer as an academic adviser for incoming students; the past two weekends I have helped these students pick their classes for their first semester at college, and think ahead about their major options and career goals. As I talk to these students, experiencing a small taste of the college life for the first time, I can't help but think about when I was in their shoes three years ago. Like them, I was overwhelmed and apprehensive of all the choices in front of me, and struggling with the freedom that Rutgers was shoving at me. Now, I am on the other end of that spectrum. I know what classes to take, what I am interested in, and I have ideas in place for my future. It's amazing how much can change in just a few years. Suddenly, I am the one people are asking for advice. I know something about all the craziness that is Rutgers University. And one year from now, it will all be over.
I don't want to think about it too much; after all, I still have a year left that I want to take full advantage of. I'm excited to continue working in my lab, and give a greater time commitment to research. I can't wait for marching band season to start up again in just a few months- and the fact that it will likely be my last ever just makes it all the more special. And even now, I am looking forward to seeing my friends again in September that I won't see all that often over the summer because South Jersey is too far away from everything else in this state.
At some point, I'll have to come to terms with the fact that next year is the end of my Rutgers undergraduate career. But...not right now.