Student activities
Joining a student club is a great way to make the most out of your Arcadia experience.

Do I Stay or Do I Go?

I haven’t had the best time with college lately. With social anxiety and other problems, it’s hard being here and fully engaging on a daily basis. It’s also becoming more difficult to concentrate in classes that I love and to complete schoolwork.

None of that is Arcadia’s fault. At all. If anything, me loving this campus and my classes so much has kept me here for longer than I thought possible, even though I was worried about keeping up in college after attending cyber school for several years of high school.

But still, I’m faced with the decision to potentially leave school for all or part of my junior year.

And that’s okay.

Taking time off from school is actually relatively common, and isn’t something to be ashamed of. Today’s fast-paced, technology-centered culture tells young adults to push, push, push, and keep going–which, ultimately, is not the right decision for some of us. Maybe pausing to enjoy life and stop constantly trying to move forward even when it’s causing issues is the best solution.

If you’re considering taking a break from school, there are other options to look into, such as:

  • Take on a lighter course load. Although most Arcadia students take 16 credits (or four classes) per semester, you can take 12 credits (or three classes) in a semester and still be considered a full-time student.
  • Study abroad! If it’s financially possible and a change of scenery is needed, check out Arcadia’s extensive study abroad options and challenge yourself. It’s worth it, I promise.
  • Look into counseling, join clubs, and do whatever you can to make the most out of your Arcadia experience. You only get four or five years here. They should count.
Request more info about study abroad opportunities

And if you do decide to take a break, here are some ways to make the time worthwhile:

  • Obtain a part- or half-time job, or an internship. It’s a great way to still keep in touch with the world, while learning valuable job skills.
  • Work on your favorite hobbies. If I decide to temporarily withdraw from school, I plan on making writing a larger part of my life, picking up piano, and cultivating my cooking skills (though that’s not necessarily a hobby. That’s just a necessity).

It’s a tough decision, I admit. But I know there’s no shame regardless in considering a different path temporarily.