A Practical Approach

Name: Lewis

College: Beloit College

Major: molecular, cellular, and integrative biology

Class: 2016

Home State: Maine

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What were your main reasons for going to college?

I wanted to learn more. College also offers a certain standard of jobs. I didn’t have a high school diploma since I was homeschool and I knew I would need some kind of degree to get a good job.

How much of an influence did your parents/peers/teachers have on the schools you chose to apply to?

My parents both went to four year schools and I think that had a subliminal effect on my choice. It was just the next step. Most of my friends were going to college and my professor at University of Maine Augusta told me about Beloit.

Where else did you apply?

I didn’t apply to any state schools. There was mix of mid-size liberal arts schools in rural and urban areas. I applied to schools all around the country and one in Canada. I decided on a small liberal arts school because of the research opportunities you can get as an undergrad.

What do you see as benefits of going to college?

A college teaches you how to learn, not just while you’re there but throughout your whole life. But it’s not a place where you grow up like a lot of people think. It’s not a middle ground between youth and adulthood. College is a professional thing meant to develop your career.

What are some negatives of going to school?

The negatives don’t outweigh the benefits, but the drinking and partying are downsides. That’s more of an issue with residential life than the actual academics.

Did you consider a gap year?

I took a gap year where I was a part-time student at a community college near my house. It helped me gain perspective on what I wanted to do in college and gave me a chance to practice college-level academics in a less difficult environment.

Now that you’re here at Beloit College, do you think you would change anything about your choices regarding your education?

I’m happy with the choices I’ve made. I just wish I hadn’t listened to my advisor about what classes to take!

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