By MARK TATTUM
There are a lot of differences in starting off at Piedmont College as a freshman with your incoming class and transferring here as a junior.
At the start of my college experience, I didn’t quite know what I was in for. I was not well prepared and didn’t respond well to adversity, so I decided to put school on hold for a while. My break from school lasted a couple of years, but I understood how vital it was to my future to go back and finish.
I enrolled at Landmark College, a small liberal arts school in Vermont with only about 600 students.
My experience of living in Vermont was quite interesting. I had lived in Georgia for most of my life, but I was determined to stay in a different part of the country for an extended period of time because I didn’t have that opportunity in past years. It was a very unique setting, and I believe my stay up there helped me mature as an individual.
Last year, I earned an associate degree in liberal studies in an effort to further my academic career in mass communications. I applied to a number of different in-state schools and visited Piedmont over the winter break.
I was very impressed by the campus as a whole, but the Swanson Center was the venue that particularly caught my eye. On top of looking like a top-notch facility, it felt like a real work environment. The admissions process went about as well as I could have possibly hoped. After being accepted, I knew that this was the place I wanted to be.
It was definitely a challenge for me to move to a new place where I really didn’t know very many people. Everything felt strange for about a week or so, but I feel like I’ve adjusted to the setting. The people that I’m around every day, from classmates to faculty to residents, have made this a smooth transition.
The small number of students in each classroom has suited my learning style.
I don’t feel as if I’m lost in the shuffle as I did early on in my education. The professors here have been quite demanding on timeliness of work and perfect attendance, but they are realistic expectations that every workplace will have once college is over.
I admire that they genuinely care about my well-being. Several classmates were quick to see if I needed anything when I was out sick one day. Gestures such as those make me feel like I’m at home.