I sometimes feel like I am more or less in the same place mentally that I was over the summer. A lot of my time lately has been spent on worrying about the future and trying to figure out what I should do for school and what the Right answer is. Of course I’ve learned by now that there is no Right answer, but that’s irrelevant.

At Hampshire I had this sense of wonderment. I would leave classes and feel like the whole universe had rearranged in the course of two hours. I wanted to call up anyone I could get to talk to me to explain to them whatever amazing thing the class had gotten me thinking about. It didn’t happen after every class, but it happened at least once for all the courses I took. Everything seemed to come together in a way too. Like even different subject matter was really all about the same thing. It was an amazing and satisfying and invigorating feeling.

I haven’t had that here. I know it’s early, and I still haven’t really gotten in to upper level stuff, but I’m not particularly confident that I’m likely to find it at UNR– at least not across the board. The closest thing I’ve had this year was when Amber from the co-op talked in my English class, and after the Master Class with Adam Cates.

To be honest, I’m bored here. And the work that I’m producing isn’t any better for the plethora of time I have– it just means I procrastinate and brood more. Comparing stuff I wrote last year to essays from this year… what I’m writing now isn’t worse, it just has a different quality. At Hampshire everything had revisions and comments and a bigger picture. It was about the work, and the process. Why would I revise something eight times (which I’ve done), when I can do one (or none…) and get an A? I know that the answer to that question is ‘for my own benefit, for the process, for the spirit of learning, etcetera, etcetera’ but I’m just not that evolved yet. My English professor actually wrote ‘thanks’ on one of my reading responses (which I no doubt did right before class), like I was doing her a favor by actually reading the assignment.

I don’t want to make it sound like UNR is this terrible place where no one does anything or learns or whatever. For a lot of people I’m sure this place is perfect for them- exactly what they want, giving them what they need. But it’s not enough for me. I told Alex the other day I felt like people at Hampshire were there to learn (by and large- some of them were just there to party), and the people here are just here to get degrees (which I know is a huge generalization). There’s nothing wrong with just wanting to get your degree and get out– that was like 90% of high school. But that’s not what I want. A college degree might be a great thing, but nothing that I want to do requires that I have one. More than anything I want to learn about stuff. About the world, and me, and writing, and art, and how all those things go together.

Is that too much to ask? I mean that as a legitimate question. Am I expecting too much? Is there a place where I can feel the way I did about my classes at Hampshire, without living waist deep in snow and seasonal depression? Am I overlooking UNR’s own inherent greatness by expecting it to be some other way? Is the problem really me, and not the college I’m at? Could it be different, better, anywhere else?

USC transfer apps are due in one month.

Advertisements