When I got to Ferris three years ago, I was an honor student. Was.
Long story short, my first semester here was rough for a lot of reasons, not the least of which was my inability to manage time.
I fell into the Netflix rut, I kept pushing back my responsibilites and honestly I ended up in some classes that I absolutely should not have been in as a first-semester freshman.
Understandably, my GPA wasn’t what it should have been when finals rolled around and I was put on academic probation from the honors college. Academic probation. The words didn’t seem real.
From the time I was seven years old, I was tapped on the shoulder and put on an accelerated track. For years and years after that, I would be given harder work and take harder classes and win countless awards and certificates and what have you; I would graduate summa cum laude; I would be put on academic porbation.
This world that had sucked me in and championed me for 10 plus years was telling me that I wasn’t good enough, and that absolutely destroyed my self-esteem.
Being an honors student had become such a pillar of my identity that when I was told I was no longer welcomed, no longer special, I felt like a part of me was being taken away.
Between the time that I was put on probation and the time that I acutally left the honors college, I discovered something: I’m still me without it.
I still love to read and volunteer and lead class discussions. I could do all of those things without the honors sticker on my forehead, and I could do them with a lot less stress too.
If you’re in the honors college and you love it, tune me out. But if you’re like me, and two-thrids of honors students at Ferris do leave the program, know that there is no shame in it.
Click here for last week’s Chat with the Chief focused on living with a speech impediment.