06 September 2011

How College Has Been Worth It for Me

I've just started my fourth year at RIT, which is to be my last as an undergrad. I feel this puts me in a good position to reminisce, so here are some thoughts on my experiences in college.

First, college has not really been worth it to me academically. I've been programming for a very long time for someone my age, because I like it a lot. I always assumed that when I got to college there would be vast depths of further knowledge to explore in that field. It turned out that there weren't—at least not vast ones. Pretty much everything I've learned about programming lately I've learned in the same way I always have: on my own, because not very many people know or care about the kinds of things I'm interested in.

That's not to say that I haven't gained something by being here, but my knowledge has increased in breadth, not in depth. By far the best classes for me have been Creative Writing and the many Chinese language classes I've taken for my minor. I could have studied these things at any liberal arts college and probably learned just as much, but the fact is that I like these professors quite a lot and now I'm biased.

So how have I benefited from my post-secondary adventures? Socially. I made friends, broke up with a girlfriend who wasn't good for me, started vlogging, got a boyfriend, broke up with said boyfriend, and am now in an open relationship with a girl that I like quite a lot and wouldn't mind being involved with for quite a long time. I'm a lot more comfortable in public than I've ever been before.

So if you're wondering whether college is good for you academically as a self-taught individual: it probably isn't, unless (as I have) you study something completely different than what you've taught yourself already.

But you can't neglect the importance of spending time getting to know people who share your interests, people you'll probably get along with, people you never imagined you would get along with. You'll end up with mates, roommates, flatmates, classmates, and sex mates.

And the thing about humans is that we tend to mate for life.