The Scarlet & Black

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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

First-year, first semester in review

From left to right: Annie Kratz and Emma Thram, both ’22, occatsionally remembering to eat a vegetable in dining hall. Photo contributed

As the fall semester dwindles to its end, first-year students reflect on their first semester at Grinnell College. Members of the class of 2022 come from all over the country and the world, bringing their different experiences with them to Grinnell.

For many first-years, becoming involved with the community at the College and the town has been one of the most important aspects of their first semester.

“I come from a really big high school that’s like twice the size of Grinnell, so one thing that I’ve been getting used to is seeing people and them not being strangers, and recognizing faces. You can talk to someone and pretty much bond with them over anything. That was something that I didn’t really expect. Everyone here is pretty warm and friendly,” said Emma Thran ’22.

Moving in to college is often the first time students have experienced living with a roommate. For Sofie Hokanson ’22, adjusting to a shared space was fairly easy.

“I used to share a room with my sister, so I’m not that weirded out by having a roommate, and my roommate and I get along very well. We have the same messy style, and it all works out,” she said.

For others, the greater levels of independence offered by college life have resulted in some new experiences.

“Living on my own has been fun. My roommate and I got a rabbit, and that’s been a lot of fun because I’ve never had to care for another mammal before, but that’s cool, you can just get a rabbit! My parents aren’t here to tell me I can’t have a rabbit!” Thran said.

In terms of adjusting to the College’s workload, first-year students have varying opinions. Some have found classes to be more challenging than they were used to.

“Classes are little harder than I expected in that I did not expect and do not really like how much outside-of-the-classroom learning I have to do without any direction. That’s been a real adjustment. It’s been different,” said Annie Kratz ’22.

Other students, like Maho Nozaki ’22, were surprised with the flexibility of managing college classes and extracurriculars.

“It was more balanced than I expected it to be, and I was allowed to do ensembles I didn’t think I was able to time-wise, so I was really glad that happened,” she said.

Though most students appear to be adjusting nicely to life at Grinnell College, there are always some improvements that could be made, especially when it comes to self-care.

“Sometimes your body just tells you to eat a vegetable. Sometimes you just don’t listen,” said Kratz.

From left to right: Annie Kratz and Emma Thram, both ’22, occatsionally remembering to eat a vegetable in dining hall.
Photo contributed
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