The Gustavian Weekly

Advice for the floundering first-year | The Gustavian Weekly

By Marie Osuna - Copy Editor | October 12, 2018 | Opinion

Dear first-years,

I hope your first month of college went well and that your transition here has been smooth. I know this has been a big life-changing experience for you, but you are absolutely killing it so far. Keep working hard, and you will succeed.

But I’m not writing just to encourage you, I also want to talk about something that’s maybe not so nice: quitting a student org that you don’t feel is working out for you.

I think we’ve all been in this position before. It’s easy to get swept away at the involvement fair and lose track of how many lists you’ve put your name down on. Pretty soon, you’re getting emails about more things than you can keep track of and every org wants something from you: come to a meeting. Write an article. Help out at an event.

You can try to balance everything, but it can be too much for one Gustie to manage. That’s why you sometimes have to break up with a student org.

Here’s my advice for you: just swallow your pride and do it. Yes, it might mean having the world’s most uncomfortable conversation with the president of the club. They might ask you why it’s not working out, and you’ll have to tell them that you just don’t like playing chess (or whatever the club is about). They might be a little hurt, but they’ll get over it. It’s better that you say something now, at the beginning of the year, before they are really expecting you to help out at the biggest event of the year and you have to say no.

Although it might be a bit awkward, it will be okay in the end, and they won’t hold it against you forever. When you see the person on campus, just smile and wave at them as you would any other acquaintance. They’ll have to smile back eventually.

If you joined a club that you just don’t love, don’t keep going just because you made the commitment. You are allowed to try things out and admit that they don’t fit well with who you are. As long as you complete any lingering responsibilities that you may have committed to (writing articles, making posters, ect.), you are allowed to politely step away.

Stay strong, dear first-years. You can do this.

Best wishes,


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