What It’s Like as an Older College Student

With college, people tend to think of young folks fresh out of high school who don’t look a day older than fifteen. They think parties. They think frat houses. Drinking. Sex. Football. Being homesick…

But as an older student it’s not quite like that. Now mind you, I am not THAT old, but I’ll be 30 in February and I can assure you that even at my age now, I look at some of the younger students like they are nuts. Here are some thoughts I’ve had in the two semesters I’ve been at my local community college:

1. “Please don’t put me with those kids again in our group assignment!”

My English teacher, as much as I love her, often puts us in group projects. Normally, I don’t mind because sometimes she lets us be in our own groups and this consisted of four other people who were my age who really got down and dirty discussing whatever topics we had to discuss in class. We were the thinkers. But on occasion our teacher chooses our groups for us and I somehow always end up with the 18/19-year-olds who did not talk and sat there on their phones. Talk about awkward and annoying.

2. “Why are these books so GODDAMN expensive??”

I’m sure all of the students think this, not just the older ones. College textbooks are expensive and let me tell you, it’s a pain in the ass when I have to pay for them out of pocket and I am scrounging around on different websites looking for the cheapest version!

3. “Why is there graffiti on the bathroom walls?”

Yes, believe it or not, people are writing things in the bathroom stalls at my college (this is not meant to be an offense towards the college of course). On my first day, I used the restroom and there was writing there on the wall with marker that said, “How’s the shit going?” I often answered it back mentally… “Pretty good, thanks for asking.” *eye roll*

4. “Wonder where that person has been?”

For some reason I get kinda sad if someone drops out of the class especially if they’ve been coming for a couple months or something and then they don’t come anymore. I wonder what has been going on in their life that they had to come to this decision…and yes, I know I am probably thinking too much and day dreaming but it’s something that often crosses my mind. I hope all those students are okay.

5. “Dude, stop changing your seat!”

Something that is a minor pet peeve of mine in college so far is when people sit in a different seat every class session. For some reason, it is this unspoken rule that you kinda claim a seat on the first day and you sit there the entire semester. Nope, not this guy. He sat in a different seat every week and it annoyed the crap out of me. It’s probably just due to my low tolerance of humans in general, and apparently the dude has commitment issues… or something.

6. “I hope I can do this.”

As an older student, I don’t feel I have the energy to keep up with the younger students but that doesn’t mean I don’t work my ass off to do well and my grades do reflect that. That’s not to say that it doesn’t get rough and I have to keep pushing myself to keep going and remember why I started this journey in the first place. And if you are an older student, I hope you never get discouraged and you outshine those youngins! (No offense)



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