Graduation: In college, staying involved is key

After my freshman year at TCU, I wanted to transfer to a different school.I felt like an outsider – like I didn’t fit in. I hated college, and I thought it was the university’s fault.

I could not have been more wrong.

My parents tried to talk me out of transferring.

“You can’t come to college expecting things to happen for you, Al,” they said. “You have to make them happen.”

So, I decided to try TCU for one more semester to make my parents happy.

I joined clubs and organizations. I started working for the Skiff and for the campus radio station.

I even started attending all those “lame” residence hall socials I had skipped out on the year before.

I quickly learned it was not TCU that had inhibited me from enjoying my time at college. It had been me.

In high school, I wasn’t involved in anything. I was on yearbook staff for a year, but that was about the extent of my extracurricular activities. I went to one football game and one homecoming dance.

I thought I was too cool for all of that.

College is different.

In college, where there are thousands of other people, you can easily get lost in the crowd. Make yourself stand out. Get involved. Meet people.

You have to put yourself out there and try new things. You have to be willing to take chances and to go outside your comfort zone.

After I adopted this mentality, I experienced the best two and a half years of my life.

Now, two years later, I leave TCU with amazing friends, great memories and tons of life experience.

I look back at freshman Aly – little, 17-year-old Aly from Kingwood – and I see a completely different person – more open-minded, determined and prepared for life than ever before. I have TCU to thank for that.

TCU didn’t just teach me about my major. It taught me about myself.

Managing Editor Aly Fleet is a senior radio-TV-film major from Kingwood.