Perhaps you have heard the common saying that college is a time to explore yourself. For many students, attending college is their first chance to be independent, including setting their own schedules, managing their own money, and developing routines that will last the rest of their lives.
While these new-found freedoms can be exhilarating, they can also seem overwhelming. Unless you were socially gifted in elementary school, figuring out how to act and think like a real adult can be surprisingly difficult. Of course, it often only takes a semester or two to figure out how to balance class with a part-time job, and maybe you’ve gotten lucky with the world’s most outgoing roommate pulling you through all of them. its misadventures, but at the end of the day, the task of personal growth will always remain in the hands of the individual.
So you may ask yourself: how do I know who I am? In other words, how do you navigate the transition from childhood to adulthood as gracefully as possible? Well, first of all, now let go of the idea of being gracious, only a few are so lucky. For the rest of us, we need to be ready and willing to make mistakes, and most importantly, look silly while doing it. The next step is just to know where to go.
There is no better way to grow taller than through experimentation. Fortunately, your average college campus is full of events, seminars, festivals, game nights, and everything in between. Idaho State University is no different. On campus, we have several departments whose sole purpose is to help students try things outside of their comfort zone.
The easiest way to try new things is probably to sign up for a class. Although this ship has sailed for the fall semester, the spring course schedule will be visible on Bengalweb on October 25. Most hobbies and courses of interest are only one credit and rarely include homework or other non-classroom activities. Beyond that, they cover a wide range of topics such as tap dancing, wilderness survival, yoga, paddle boarding, fencing, judo, archery, Dutch cuisine and even l ‘horse riding. The list of courses changes every semester, so you never know what might pique your interest. The best part about taking a class is that you largely don’t have to worry about finding the supplies on your own.
Speaking of supplies, another option for exploring hobbies is to visit the Craft Center on the first floor of the Pond Student Union Building (PSUB). For a $ 2 door fee, you can use many of the otherwise expensive tools the center has to offer, like pottery towers, kilns, and a fully furnished woodworking shop.
“We have a bit of everything you could possibly want,” said Jasmine Lindsey, senior, who has worked at the center for four years, “We offer courses in stained glass, various levels of pottery and handcraft, calligraphy , glass bead making, pretty much anything you can think of!
Aside from the entrance fee, the store charges a small amount for consumables you don’t bring with you, such as clay blocks or fabric. Doors are open six days a week, with staff members ready to offer a helping hand or other expertise if and when you need it. Unlike college courses, those offered by the Craft Center will not impact your GPA and do not all require a weekly commitment.
“I’ve learned so many useful skills here it’s ridiculous, and I can even contribute my own projects. Like I have a tear in my pants, I can mend them while I’m here, or get myself [clay] bowls for my house, or making tie-dye shirts for Christmas. The possibilities are endless, ”said Lindsey.
If you already know that you are more of a person who enjoys the outdoors, another place to visit is the Outdoor Adventure Center (OAC), also located on the first floor of the PSUB. The adventure center has tons of seasonal gear to rent, like backpacks, kayaks, tents, and more. In the winter, they even rent yurts, which look a bit like fabric cabins and are perfect for a weekend getaway. For those not yet ready to go on their own, the OAC also offers several tours throughout the year, including rock climbing, kayaking, and hiking in Yellowstone. Each activity has a different level of difficulty, so students can decide how ready they are to tackle an adventure. Most trips are low cost, ranging from $ 30 to $ 70 depending on the length of the field trip and supplies needed, however, each student is also entitled to one free trip!
Finally, students can also explore recreation at the Reed Gym on the upper campus. The gym features several tennis courts, racquetball courts, a 25-meter swimming pool (currently closed for repairs), several cardio machines, and one of the largest indoor varsity climbing walls in the country. To use any of these services, all a student needs is their ID card. After checking in at reception, you can rent any equipment you may need free of charge. This includes everything from balls and rackets to weightlifting belts and climbing shoes.
“[At the climbing wall] we’ll teach you how to belay, we’ll teach you how to buckle up, and then we also have automatic relays, ”said Junior Lauryn Smith, who works at the Reed Gym reception. “We have a thing called the bloc. One side is about ten feet and one side is about twelve feet, and this is the line where you can climb without a rope. So if you’ve never really done all of that, we can sit there and teach you, and help you, and kind of be a back-up for you.
The last step in finding hobbies in college is to muster the determination to try. On those rare evenings without homework, or those awkward gaps in your schedule, deciding to explore something new instead of watching more Netflix can come with lifelong rewards.
“When you’re in college you try to understand yourself, so if you come here and start working on things, you can be a pottery enthusiast and not know it. It’s a great way to find out who you are and what you love to do, but it’s also a great stress reliever because college is scary. So even if you just throw pottery on the wheel and make a huge mess, it’s still a stress reliever, ”Lindsey said.