Making Choices --For the Freshmen(原创)

Encountering with these eager faces of freshmen in Zhuhai Campus of SYSU, I can't help looking back to my similar experience one year ago….

Before getting enrolled in college, I had been bombarded with suggestions.

"Take courses of different subjects. Broaden your horizon," my high school teacher advised.

"Dive into campus activities. Have fun!"a friend said. She was well seasoned in Student Union affairs.

"Work hard. Get as many 'A's as possible. Make your transcript look good!"my cousin offered. By the way, she was a senior busy hunting for a job.

As for my mom, she simply said, "Take care. Don't be too hard on yourself."

Composed, but hopeful, as most freshmen did, I eagerly set out for an exciting life at college. Yet very soon, as I pondered these golden rules, I was overwhelmed and bewildered. Such advice all made perfect sense. Yet I couldn't figure out what should top my priority list.

I began to find my first semester at college was stimulating in a somewhat anarchic way. I rushed from library to club, from classroom to tennis court, "enjoying", as it were, the freshness of being a freshman at the expense of my sleep. Little by little, however, I became over taxed and eventually fell victim to Depression Syndrome. Literally , I was overwrought from the pressures of work and life at college. I wanted to experience and excel. I wanted everything. Emotionally , I was like an insatiable kid whose hands had got stuck in the candy jar with too many sweets.

Luckily I didn't suffer for too long from my "get-everything" malaise. As a freshman about to be sophomore, I realize now that our time and stamina don't allow us to extend ourselves in all directions. So the moral responsibility of college education is to teach students the art of of making important choices. No matter how hard the growing pains are, mastering this art is at the heart of every undergraduate's success, whether in school now or in life later on.

In some way, if we want to fully experience the college life, to make friends, to discover what our age peers believe and to strengthen ourselves in new and unexpected ways, we must chose to set aside some pleasures, such as watching TV series "Friends" and karaoke evenings, so could invest more time in more reading , speaking and study.

On the other hand, all challenges and opportunities faced with every freshman in the following days, will be determined how adequately our education trains him to gain a clear perception of himself, and thereby to make sensible choices that follow. College education, as British philosopher Alfred North Whitehead said, "Should be energizing as the poet of our dreams and the architect of our purposes." Such purpose, self-discipline and vision all hinge on the part of choice-making.

Again looking back on the advice received those very first days on campus, I no longer feel perplexed, because I now have my own guideline: Make choices that lead to a clearer vision of who I am, what I can do , and how I may best tap my potential. The horizon is now wide but distinct, and the taste already feels sweat.

作者:中山大学通讯员 陈萌

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