Returning to Campus After Semester in the City

Maria, sophomore at UNH

I was a part of the Fall 2018 cohort and loved Semester in the City and my time in Boston so much. But today, I wanted to write a bit about my life beyond Boston. My favorite part of the program is how it is set up to allow college students to experience “the real world”. Semester in the City gives you a sample of being an independent adult because you typically go to your internship, come back home to your apartment, and cook dinner for yourself.

This was my first true experience of independent living and I loved having both the responsibility and freedom that came with it. However, this made it difficult to transition back into college life where I live in a dorm instead of an apartment and eat at dining halls instead of cooking for myself. Suddenly, I felt restricted by college life. That’s why SITC should be viewed as “studying abroad” in a way because you are placed in a new, foreign environment where more responsibility is asked of you.

At the same time, I came back to campus invigorated by my semester in Boston. In those 16 weeks, I experienced so much personal and professional growth, it was astounding. The strange thing is that during the program I didn’t notice it was happening. But now, I recognize it in everything I do. Just this week, I applied for a position for next year that I never would have felt comfortable applying for a year ago because I would have felt unqualified and uncomfortable putting myself out there like that.

More than anything, the biggest takeaway I have from my time with SITC is that I am a capable adult. While I had the best time of my life in Boston, I look forward to the rest of my time with UNH, utilizing the skills I learned with SITC and pursuing all the doors that have opened up for me because of it.

Maria Rollinson is a sophomore at UNH, studying art history. She interned at 826 Boston in the O’Bryant Writers’ Room. She is currently a student ambassador for Semester in the City at UNH.