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Secrets to success

On April 10, 2014

The Utah Statesman asked 14 seniors to share advice and lessons they’ve learned in their time at USU.

Kellie Erickson
“Never underestimate the power of sleep, because as much fun as it is to stay out all night long, it definitely doesn’t help you for the next day.”

Ashley Lee
“I’ve learned that college isn’t all about school, necessarily, that it’s more about building a well-rounded person, and that’s what’s really going to advance you in your life. So my advice … is to just really get involved, and really find yourself to the point where you know what you like. … Your college experience will be so much better, so much more fun if you’re involved and not just doing school all the time.”

Marina Hernandez
sociology, law and constitutional studies
“Do an internship, even if you’re not in any government degree. … It gets you out into a new town and gives you opportunities to meet new people, to network. And then also, study abroad. … It exposes you to new cultures, new food, new people. It kind of puts you in a situation where you have to learn for yourself and learn how to communicate. Just take opportunities outside of the traditional academic environment such as interning and studying abroad.”

Trevor Mills
global communication
“Take classes that you really enjoy. Take classes that you want to take. I think that sounds kind of silly, but it makes it easier to go to those classes. Something that you’re passionate about that you want to graduate in is better than just taking it to get a degree. In my major classes, I’m always learning stuff that I really care about.”

Anna Donaldson
health education and promotion
“You don’t have to worry so much about (school). At first I got freaked out, you know? School would freak me out and classes, and I would stress over it, but really, don’t worry about it, and you’ll make your way through it towards the end. Just enjoy it.”

Jason Richards
“You kind of just have to figure it out yourself, but you need to have a good balance between study and enjoying yourself. Don’t put too much effort in one area. … You can’t only study or only play or only work. You have to just be careful with your priorities.”

Sam Rolfe
“Make friends with the professors. Find someone you really like and become close friends with them, because they’ll get you places. They’ll get you into things that you might not be able to if you’re just a random student. And then, this one I’m kind of torn about, but work experience, some students will come here and just take classes, take classes and have no real-life experience. Try to apply what you learn in your classes to real life as much as possible. Get involved in the clubs. Don’t be afraid of the sororities or fraternities. They’re not all bad.”

Ashley Hansen
“Just visit your adviser every semester so that you know which classes to take so that you’re not missing anything and you’re not here longer than you need to be.”

Kate Auman
graphic design
“Ultimately, push it. Push it real good, just like the song. Really though, I think the harder you work in school, the more you get out of your education. And I think too often, we just settle for going to classes and writing stupid papers, but if you really train your soul to give everything you’ve got to this education, then you’re going to have a way better time and you’re going to love the people around you a lot more.”

Ying C
statistics and economics
“Learn programming for any major because from what I know, all the research they do — at least I know in economics, statistics — they’re all using a bunch of programming in there, so it’s really important. And then in finding jobs, most jobs now, they do a lot of stuff on computers.”

Megan Sjoberg
“Don’t overload yourself with classes. It’s perfectly respectable to take 12 credits or less. So I would say, take your time. Use college as an experience to really find yourself, and don’t try to rush through it and get into careers and grad school. Just take your time, and you’ll enjoy it a lot more, be a lot happier.”

Jordan Daines
philosophy and history
“Don’t major in business. Keep your soul and do not major in business. Become an educated person by getting a degree in the humanities. Sometimes, cowboy coffee is the only way to start the day. Protest things. Be active outside the official institutions of educational power at this university. Sometimes that means burning down a building, not that I’ve ever done that. I don’t have any happy, go-lucky advice, mostly just, yeah. Protest the goings-on in the government.”

Brian White
marketing and business administration
“My advice would be to get involved in as many diverse groups as possible, because that helps you to establish a better network of people that later on down the road you’ll be benefited from. Whatever your major is, I’d encourage you to get involved with the club that’s associated with your major. That’ll ultimately be that core group that you’ll use to get a job, to expand in your business later on in life. Academically, I would say 50 percent is worthless. Not to dis on anything, but at the end of the day, there’s tons of people that have degrees, but it’s all about people that you know and how they can get you there.”

Braden Jenkins
human movement science
“Figure out what you want to do early on so you can determine what you need to do to get there and what is required to accomplish that overall goal so you can make plans to accomplish those goals. And if you do that, you won’t waste time with pointless classes or credits that aren’t related to where you want to be in life.”

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