Saturday, March 21, 2009

Decisions, Decisions

Since getting rejected from MIT, I've taken some time to reorganize my thoughts, make some important decisions, and make some baby steps towards preparing for college.

As much as I don't want to stay in-state, I will be attending the University of Florida. I was looking at a few other schools that I could potentially go to, and I found myself constantly shortchanging UF because I didn't want to stay in state and admiring other schools for superficial reasons, though when I compared programs and opportunities, UF stood very solid.

After making my decision, I scoped out some clubs and organizations on campus that I would potentially participate in. Pretty exciting. I'd love to start a FIRST team up there since there isn't one, but it would require an insane amount of effort that I'm not sure I could handle the first year. There's always volunteering for now...

Looking on the bright side, I'll save LOTS of money, will have a few friends on campus, and will get to experience the wildness of the Gator Nation and the #1 Party School...perhaps I'll learn to loosen up a bit (HA!). 

Perhaps the only downside to this is the housing situation, which could be both a positive or negative depending on how you look at it. Since I made my decision too late, I will most likely not get on-campus housing. According to the UF Housing Blog, they have 2,700 more contracts than they have space for and 69 (1 = me) on the waitlist. Looking at last year's data, they were only 1,200 over and were able to place all except about 200 by the end of the summer. This year chances look a lot more unrealistic. This brings up the headache of searching for an off-campus location and worrying if the potential scholarships I get will cover rent. The flip side is that the rooms are nicer and more spacious, I'll probably have a private bathroom, and a decently sized kitchen, so no need for a meal plan, and a lot of the complexes cater to students so there are fully-furnished rooms, computer labs, roommate pairings, social areas, individual leases, and all-inclusive rent payments.  I've heard from a few that live off campus that it's sometimes cheaper. A lot of the places I've checked out seem like resorts and almost too good to be true for the price. Maybe I can take a trip up to Gainesville during Spring Break.

One awesome thing about the state of Florida is the Bright Futures scholarship. 100% of my tuition will be covered, and I just recieved note of my UF Presidential Scholarship as well. Now I just have to find money for housing and books, which kind of sent me into a panic earlier this week. I suddenly realized that burried within the drone of morning announcements at school was a daily vital message "Seniors, be sure to stop by the BRACE office to check out new scholarship opportunities." Hearing this daily for 3.5 years, I eventually stopped paying attention to it. I've only been to the BRACE office a few times, mostly when summoned by our BRACE advisor. Wednesday I decided to stop by. There were TONS of local scholarships! Many of them seemed within reach, unlike a lot of things posted on FastWebs and other scholarship search engines. I'm not really sure of exactly how much I'll need, but I'm applying for as many as I can right now.

With all that said, I got myself extremely hyped for going to UF and just college in general this week and it's difficult to motivate myself out of bed every morning. That darn curse of senioritis. I've had a weird attitude about high school for a while now, but nothing beats the cynicism I face now. There's no need for competitiveness, no need for extra participation out of my interest, no need for near-perfect attendance, and barely a need to go to school. These last few weeks are going to be tough as I encourage myself not to settle for effortless Bs and high Cs and force myself to wake up at 5am to go to that place every morning.

Another decision that I'm dealing with is if I should get a job again. I promised myself that I wouldn't go back to retail unless dire conditions demanded it, but my savings are dwindling, and as I've said many times, I like having money. A new Staples close to me is hiring and so is the Apple store, which is quite a bit father though, but close to Dillard.  I don't have a demanding schedule this last semester, so it might be nice to snag a job before the summer job rush so I can work through the summer and start saving up again.


emile said...

Yeah my sister got into uf that means i have three reasons to go there now.

Anonymous said...

Great! Good luck Noelle ;)

domi.blurbs said...

so glad for the upside :]