Freshman Student Life in PUP Manila

by - Sunday, March 20, 2016


Looking back to when we are all busy planning for our dream universities even before graduating high school up to preparing for the entrance exams. Time flies really fast that I haven't noticed I am no longer a freshman college student. I just survived a year and three years more to conquer.

I just want y'all know I got into my dream university. Well, behind that it's definitely not easy since it was the top famous public university in the Philippines with a minimum of 75% passing rate, with this infamous judgement, "Mga estudyante doon aktibista. Aktibista ka na rin ba?"

Yes, I was also judged, since I am student from this university. 

Contrary to getting into my dream university, I ran out of slots to my dream course since I was from the last batch who took the entrance exam, I cannot do anything about it. In the end, I got in to the course I have no idea at all. Like literally, what did I get into?

I still grab the opportunity although I have no idea what course I got into because probably it is God's will and I just have to trust Him since He will not put me into this situation, I will never be able to handle.

In just span of a year, a lot of things changed. I experienced a lot difficulties more than reliefs; and in every lessons I learned, I felt like inch by inch I am growing as better teenager. So here, I am going to share the best things happened, noteable struggles I suffered and lessons I learned from my freshman life that might help you also as you go on to your college journey.

The best things happened

  1. I became an independent teenager. I survived this school year living away from my family although I still go home weekly, still it's an important progress for me.  To be honest, I only felt homesick just on my first night when my mother accompanied me to my dorm.
  2. I learned how to budget my weekly allowance. I remembered eating only bread, yes no rice, everytime I'm in dorm. Shameful speaking, I don't know how to cook so I always eat in fast food whenever I have excess money or whenever I'm craving from something. 
  3. I learned how to manage my time. Especially when there's an important school activity but we are having an exam for the next day or week, I carefully planned my schedule. I only travel less, which is the hardest part to do, since I cannot stay for a long time in dorm.
  4. I got my first ATM! It's such a fulfilling thing to have for a 15-year-old self lol. Thanks to my mom and dad and Landbank. It's now much better to save more!
  5. I also got my own laptop! Unexpectedly, honestly speaking, my parents bought me even I wasn't telling them to buy since I know it would take us more months before we could afford it.
  6. I got to travel somewhere I've never been in my entire life! Such an amazing feeling to be young not wild but free indeed! I got a chance to go tMakati riding PNR for the first time; experienced our first-epic rally with bunch of activist in Batasan; got a chance to go to Ayala Fairview Terraces & SM Fairview for my first ever first mall show of JaDine Mall of Asia to attend my first ever Manila International Book Fair with some special artists and famous authors; a chance to explore the  the fortune-tellers in Quiapo because of our Sociology class; I got a chance to saw the only church in the Philippines that was made from metal, the San Sebastian Church; try the unli dessert in Cafe Dolce; got the chance to travel in Tagaytay for one day with my college buddies with side trip to Cavite to celebrate my college friend's birthday; I also got a chance to see and explore the Quezon City Circle and the National Aquino Wildlife Park near it; and got to explore the famous Venice Piazza Grand Canal Mall; and maybe the best thing happened  was, I got a chance to experience an OTWOL Live Viewing Party with JaDine and my new found friends.
  7. I got a chance to meet new friends. Since then, I was only involved only with small group of friends, but once I got into college, it is normal to have more than one circle of friends.
  8. I passed all my subject course! Probably, this is the best thing happened this school year since the course I took is one of the hardest, given that there are really professors that are always absent. But thank God! All my hardships from this school year has been well paid off.
  9. Lastly, I grew closer to God. Because I believe, you'll never surpass anything in your life without Him by your side. Indeed, He's really important in our everyday life.

The difficulties I suffered

  1. Adjustment & adaptation in new environment. It is quite challenging since I never been in my entire 15 years to live independently alone with 42.5 km away from my hometown. But happily, I survived! 
  2. Limitations in habits. Where I've been staying in Manila was not that good that it literally limits my home-habits that made hard for me to  adjust even more. 
  3. When sickness strikes. It was literally damn hard when I have no one to lean on when I get sick in dorm. Although I called my parents that time, but since it was already past midnight, they cannot do anything for me. 
  4. Adjustment in new school & professors. Believe me or not, it took me a year to become fully adjusted with my new environment in Manila. I remembered when I was in high school, I can voluntarily recite in class but now in college, I have to pray harder hardest for not my name to be called in class lol.
  5. Adjustment in new friends to be with. Well in this big city where there are lots of people came from different places have its own personality took me a while to understand how to interact with them.
  6. Struggling to study in new place. Since this is a new environment and new place to live, I also have to adjust with my study. Idk. Maybe I just got used studying at home, well, specifically in my room since it's brighter than in my dorm. 

Lessons I learned

  1. First, wholeheartedly accept the reality. It's just normal to make adjustments and adaptations to new places and environment since I will live here for more than a year. Acceptance of differences with what I got used to will make it easier for me to adjust and adapt to this new environment. 
  2. Take care your health more. Well, everyone normally get sick especially if you are not taking care of yourself. I learned I should be more prepared to what medicine I must always have with me for emergencies. 
  3. Adjust quickly as you can since time is limited. Life is too short, you can't bring back the past just to make it right, so as much as you can adjust quickly so you can grab more opportunities or set more goals —like being a Dean's Lister or much greater like running for Magna Cum Laude. Also, in college the world is much bigger, so don't close your door from the people who wants to be friends with you since you would not know your friends today might not be your friends tomorrow.
So much for today! For now, share to us some life lessons from your freshman year in the comments below!

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