Some thoughts on school:
I came across my final report card from my senior year of high school while unpacking today. I made distinguished honor roll that marking period and my GPA was 92%. I was #56 out of around 200 students. I made A’s every semester of Calculus that year and did very well in all my other classes. I mention Calculus because I had such a hard time with it in college. I took it 2.25 times, and ended up with a B finally. Up through the end of high school, I never had to study much or work very hard to get good grades. I took some honors classes such as history and democratic citizenship. I didn’t take honors physics, calc, chem, bio, or english. Actually, I would have liked to have taken honors english but you had to read two books over the summer and write reports on them to be in honors english. I really never learned how to really study because I could study for a half hour the night before and end up with a high A on a test.
This did not prepare me well for college. My first college attempt at RIT I did okay. Not great, just okay. I think two As, two Bs, and a D (calc). My second attempt, at HACC, I did great. I had a 3.6 GPA when I left (would have higher except for two C’s: visual interdev in which I forgot to take the final, and statistics). HACC was much like high school though. Didn’t have to work hard to get good grades. And when I did work hard, such as for physical geology, I ended up with the highest grades in the class and a 99 average.
Millersville was a shock to me. You actually had to *think* there. It wasn’t just learn the information and spit it back. You had to apply it. I had never had to do this before. At first, I tried studying as much as I did at HACC. Didn’t do too well. Then I tried studying more. Still didn’t do too well. Then I got frustrated and didn’t study much at all. Surprisingly usually did about the same as when I had studied a lot. I usually got the basic stuff right, it was the application parts that messed me up. Studying couldn’t really help that much. I began to feel pretty bad about myself, thinking that I wasn’t as smart as the other students. That’s partly why I wanted to switch schools and majors. When I left Millersville, my GPA was a 2.5. For me, that just wasn’t acceptable. I was getting C’s in my classes and just not enjoying them at all.
Now I’m in the fourth week of my first class at AIU. I have an 87%, which is the class average. There’s the assignments this week plus the ones next week yet to go. I haven’t done as well on the writing parts of the assignments as I could have. I’ve rushed on some of them because I’ve been busy with moving and starting my new job and all. So I’m back again to where I’m not working at my full potential but still doing well, so I feel “smarter” now. But in a different way. Before I felt “science” smart. Now I feel “art” smart. Honestly, I’d rather be science smart, but I think design as a career would be much better for me.

  • I love feeling ‘smart’ in a class. I always hated the classes where I felt stupid (which was omost of them, sadly enough). IU was actually a lot harder than MHC, which surprised me because MHC is ranked a much higher school than IU. Basically, MHC won’t fail you unless you really do something wrong, like never go to class or never do any of the work. IU has no problem with failing you, I’ve found. I’d much rather feel art smart than science smart, as I’m not very artistic at all anymore.

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