Statue of James Madison holding a card that reads "thinking of you"

Value in College

by Molly Robinson

There are some hundred of organizations at JMU, some 20,000 students that attend classes, and over 50 majors offered. How does the average student sort through it all and find their path at JMU?Statue of James Madison holding a card that reads "thinking of you"

It all comes down to what you choose to take value in:

  • Family, friends, and close/meaningful relationships
  • Excelling academically
  • Extracurricular activities
  • Fun
  • Work: part time or full time
  • Networking—connections through meeting a plethora of people

The reality is that when in college, you can do everything you want. It is possible to value all the above items; but when push comes to shove, some weeks you will have to choose what is most important to you. Beginning each new semester, students should reassess their goals and rank the above items. That way, when you have an “off” week or weekend, you can look back at what you’re going towards and what you want from your college experience—long and short term. At the end of the day, its better to give your all to a few things then to give little pieces of your time to a lot of things.

If you value getting into medical school, perhaps your organizations will be centered around this goal—from research with a professor, to TAing, and perhaps a biology honors society. If you value having fun and being around others, maybe you’ll choose Greek life or Student Ambassadors. Whatever you choose to value in college, I hope it suits you well. People will notice where you stand in your values and goals, and while college is an opportunity to experiment, it’s also a time to narrow down what you want out of your life!

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