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Where do I fit in?

In a lecture hall on a university campus, most of the students are still below the legal age to consume alcohol—of course this doesn’t stop them from doing it anyway.  Among the sea of teens, you see the occasional gray-haired gentleman or a woman with wrinkles around her eyes. These folks really stand out in the crowd.

I am the twenty-something young woman who neither blends in nor stands out.  I have asked myself at times, Where do I fit in?

My academic adventure began in September of 2001.  It was then that I left my nice home in Newport Beach, California and arrived on the University of Oregon campus to find myself living in a tiny room on the fourth floor of a campus dormitory—an experience that I will never forget (for all the wrong reasons).  That is whole blog post in itself!

After my first year of college, I moved back home to Newport Beach.  At that point I had no clear idea of what I wanted to do with my life.  For the next six years I worked at a few different businesses, learned some helpful job skills  and thought about what I wanted to study.  All things pointed toward public relations.  So, in the fall of 2007, I returned to the University of Oregon where I have been ever since.  I plan to graduate this spring, 2010 with a degree in journalism and a minor in communication studies.

I am a non-traditional student, which means that I didn’t graduate from college four years out of high school.  My interests, pastimes and ambitions are quite different from most of the people on campus. Oftentimes I find that I can relate more easily with the young professors and instructors than I can with most of the students.  I am doing my best to stay involved and participate in the programs offered by the university despite how awkward and out of place I sometimes feel.  Do I have regrets?  No.  Would I have done things differently if I had known then what I know now? Yes.

This blog will focus on my non-traditional journey though academia.  I have some fun stories to share and some tips that other non-trads may find helpful.

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