Not having a plan is OK, things will work out

By Madison Fraser | Reporter

The one thing my parents always told me while growing up was, “We don’t care what you choose to do, but you must get a college degree.” From the moment they told me this back in my elementary days, my plan was set. I was to get good grades in high school, get into a four-year university and earn my degree in whatever I’d like. What I didn’t realize at the time was that creating a plan for myself was going to be the easy part.

From that point, the life decisions became harder and more frequent. I must have applied to over 10 universities after high school, some of which were in New York City, others of which were Ivy League and other still state schools. Mind you, I went to a really small public high school in rural Northern California that did not properly prepare their students for the rigorous college curriculum I was about to endure. Why I thought applying to all of these schools was a good idea, I’m not sure. However, I figured that applying to some of the best colleges was the best way to follow the plan accordingly.

I ended up starting my college career at a community college nowhere near my hometown and definitely not on the list of colleges I had originally applied to. I figured since I was denied to my dream school I would attend the community college closest to it and then easily be admitted after two years. My parents were on board with this idea because I was still pursuing a higher education in a much cheaper way.

I loved my life at community college. I was able to teach myself how to properly prepare for the strenuous workload a university would be. I discovered how to balance work, school and friends. At the end of those two years, I thought I had it all figured out and I couldn’t wait to skip on over to the university I had my eyes on for so long. Then the rejection letter came. All because I didn’t take the one course I was required to. I hopped on the blaming train and was so frustrated with my advisor for not catching this mistake, but I knew deep down this wasn’t her fault. My plan and my parents’ plan for me didn’t matter in comparison to God’s plan

At this point I began to question everything. Was my major right for me? Was I supposed to stay in my comfort zone? Should I branch out in every possible way? I couldn’t decide on a single thing. By taking matters into my own hands I decided to apply to two schools in Texas, which I knew nothing about and had never heard of. There was nothing driving me to these schools other than the fact their application deadline hadn’t closed yet. It began to feel like the college application process was what I was most confident at thus far.

Then the acceptance letters came. And it became real, I was moving to Texas. To study what? I wasn’t sure. I liked writing and the idea of journalism so I declared that as my major. But not after switching it twice beforehand. I told everyone I wanted to go into book publishing, but had no real idea what that consisted of. Now I am three years completed at a wonderful university I had no dream of ever attending. I am majoring in journalism, something I also never considered in my original plan. However, these decisions I’ve made so far have been so good for me and have showed me what life can be like when you reach outside your comfort zone.

The funny thing about making plans is the process you endure in trying to follow through with them. I never would have imagined myself in Texas obtaining a journalism degree, but I know this is where I was supposed to end up. Through all the frustration of rejection, things falling out of line and broken promises, I never would have guessed this is what it was all leading up to. While what comes next is even scarier than anything I have faced yet. I know now to have faith in the process and trust in God’s work.

As college students on the brink of adulthood, we are in the most vulnerable part of our comfort zone. For everyone who is applying for jobs after graduation, thinking of transferring, or just dreaming up a new plan, have peace of mind knowing that you will end up right where you belong.

Madison Fraser
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