For KIPPsters with their college years still ahead of them, Marwa Eissa has some words of advice. A sophomore at University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Marwa says it’s best to get ahead of the game on financial aid. “Apply for a lot of scholarships, and I mean a lot, alongside FAFSA of course,” she advised.
On a more personal level, a KIPPster’s attitude can also affect your path to college.
“Some have it easy and some have it hard,” Marwa said. “Don’t compare yourself to them. Keep focusing yourself.
Marwa is a psychology major with a thirst for knowledge. She has two favorite classes at the moment: French — a language she has always wanted to learn — and Cognitive Processing, a fascinating psychology class with the added bonus of a great professor.
“The subject itself is very interesting and really gets me thinking,” Marwa said. “And there’s also the fact that the professor is very funny — he makes the class even more enjoyable. He goes above and beyond, making jokes and telling us stories that would relate back to the topic.”
Between classes, Marwa can be found studying, hanging out in the Gaughan Multicultural Center, or taking a “much-needed nap.” She considers herself lucky in the hand she’s been dealt on campus.
“Living in dorms is pretty fun, more so after I moved from the traditional dorms into an apartment style,” Marwa said. “It feels really nice to finally have your own room and privacy. I live with two of my closest friends so it’s fun to cook together, study together in the living room, and just basically hang out and do nothing sometimes.”
Marwa met her college friends through all sorts of engagement on campus, from shared classes, volunteering, and clubs like the African Student Association to chance meetings on campus or in the cafeteria. “I used to be really shy and quiet up until I got to college, but making friends was not that hard,” she said.
One of Marwa’s main challenges is deciding which subfield to focus on in her major. “I don’t want to end up choosing the wrong thing and regret it later,” she said. “Hopefully I do figure it out before graduation as I’m planning to continue to grad school.”
“The best thing about college is the freedom of making your choices, finally being able to experience life as an adult,” Marwa said. “I’m building myself up.”
At times, the independence of college can be difficult: being far away from family during a difficult time can affect everything from grades to positive energy.
“But the good thing is it creates strong mentality and we become thick skinned so we are not fragile anymore,” Marwa said.