From Belize to Books: on returning back to school
The transition to college has been a smooth one thankfully;
so many of the experiences from the past year apply to my everyday life. Perhaps most importantly, I've noticed the biggest difference inside the classroom. Unlike basically everyone else here at college, I've been interacting with my professors since day one. I'm lucky enough to go to a small college where attending office hours and meeting with the professor are encouraged, but I have been surprised by how few of my peers participate in class and demonstrate a willingness to get to know the professors (all of whom so far have been friendly and helpful). Similarly, I've noticed I feel much more socially confident than I was one year ago--I readily approach people, ask questions, don't feel uncomfortable when I'm alone. Even my posture is different. Finally, when I've felt lonely or homesick, I know how to work through those feelings as soon as they hit. It's been a bit odd being back in a "bubble" of sorts, with everyone being my same age again, but having a roommate who also took a gap year (and having connected with many other gap year students here) has helped.