The three things I wish I had known

Katherine Taylor

Since this is my last column, I want to self-indulgently take a little time to thank the important people.

Thank you to my friends and family who actually read my column. And thank you to my dad for telling me my columns were good even when commenters said they weren’t. Mostly thank you to my editors for being patient and putting up with me: I sound 10 times funnier and smarter as a result.

Since the task of reflecting on my time at the University and saying goodbye sounds too monumental — plus, senioritis — I’ll leave you with the three pieces of advice I wish I had known earlier about how to succeed at UT.

One, if you need something, talk to someone in person. You have no clue how many library fines I’ve gotten out of this way (thank you librarian staff!). It’s easy to get turned down via email. My petition for a class to count for credit was dismissed until I met with them in person and suddenly my request was granted. I found out that you can take 18 hours in a semester, and you can have transfer credits in your last 30 hours: you just have to be willing to talk to someone in person about it first.

Two, to go along with the first item, ask for things. Ask for help, ask for favors, ask for jobs — just ask.

Ask the study abroad office if your class can count for credit toward your major. Ask a professor if he or she can let you into a class that’s already full. Ask a professor you like if you can do research with them or if they know anyone that you could help. Ask friends or career services to help you find internships. Ask for extensions on your papers. Sure, I’ve been turned down a few times, but all the things above are things I’ve asked for and received during my time at UT. So rather than dwelling about something you can’t handle on your own, ask for help.

Third, and finally, do something new that you won’t get a chance to otherwise. Go to a random, fun religious festival (try Holi). Join a club. Go to a comedy show with a bunch of hipsters that you’ll never see again. Go to ACL, SXSW, TX/OU weekend and more sporting events than you can handle. Try out as many new restaurants as you can. Fly to a new city with the money you make back from selling your textbooks. Keep your ears to the ground for happy hours and free drink specials. Visit Barton Springs, the Greenbelt, Hamilton Pool and the Secret Beach as many times as you can.

Most of all, realize that your time in college is about so much more than school. Thanks, and hook ‘em.

Taylor, a Plan II and rhetoric and writing senior, worked as a columnist in the fall and spring.