In May I graduated with an Associate's Degree in the Arts. Something that struck me as odd was that I didn't feel quite as excited as some of the people graduating with me. Regardless, it was still an enjoyable night of my life. There was a hot gym, not a lot of seating, a 'powerful' statement from my state governor claiming to make our state "the greatest nation on Earth," and diplomas.
College has been one of the best educational experiences I've ever had. In high school I dealt so much with classmates who didn't care about education and spent most of their time hassling my teachers (or me). High school wasn't a good time.
College is where you meet the people who care. They want their degree, they want their education. Whether it be because they're paying for it or because they simply enjoy learning, they do their best. I didn't have to dread group assignments anymore because most of my teammates put in proper effort. There are the party-people, but they still do their best in classes.
Now, I went to a community college, so the classes were reasonably smaller than they might have been. My biggest class had maybe 35 people. That's huge to me, considering I graduated in a class of 13. With these smaller classes, the teachers were able to offer much better one-on-one help. They could also take a more personal interest. I will always remember my days here fondly just due to my Composition and Literature teachers.
Assignments in high school usually came across as easy to me, unless they were math related. I rarely had to study, made study guides only if I had to... Hell, in high school, we got study guides for use during finals sometimes. Yeah. College challenged me, and I liked that.
So it was with bittersweet emotions that I took my diploma on the stage and turned my tassel. It didn't really feel like the end. After all, I'm still going to transfer to a university, but I'm still a student at this college despite having graduated! I have to finish out a certificate (one-year program) that I'd started last semester. It still feels like it deserves a post on my blog, though, because it was a big experience in my life - one that obviously kept me away from my blog for some time.
If anyone reading this ever doubts that college would do anything for them, at least try some classes at a community college. A lot of people claim community colleges to be "not as good" as universities, but I promise they're wrong. In some ways, I bet community colleges are better.