A Regret Became a Learning Experience

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Fiyinfoluwa Akinwumi
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I am proud of my academic accomplishments this far. However, in retrospect I cannot help but think of things I wish I would have done differently to excel in my academic career.  One of my biggest regrets stemmed from a choice I had to make in my senior year. Here is the story of how it turned into a valuable learning experience.

An Advanced Credit Opportunity

During the end of my sophomore year in high school, I discovered the opportunity for students to take dual credit courses while in high school. These classes allow students to start preparing for rigorous college coursework. Plus they earn college credit that can be transferred to the college a student chooses. The adviser stated that most colleges will accept those credits more than the advanced placement exam scores.

A Difficult Choice

This seemed like an amazing offer because getting college credits before I start college meant I could graduate sooner than the other students.  I took three college classes when I was in high school. However, in the spring of my senior year, I had the opportunity to take both a college calculus class and do an architecture and engineering internship. I registered for a college calculus class and was excited when I was also accepted into the internship. But the schedules of the internship and the class were conflicting. Since it was the first time I got an internship offer, I dropped the calculus class and chose the internship.

A Disappointing Experience

The internship had twenty students from my school. We were excited to get experience in architecture and engineering. At the end of the program we would be making a presentation to the company showing the accomplishments we had made. However, after two weeks several students decided to drop out of the internship.  That made it more difficult for those staying in it. We had to take on the extra jobs initially assigned to those who left. Three weeks before the presentation, the students that remained in the internship decreased to two – myself and one other student. We were left to prepare for the presentation that should have had the work of twenty. The supervisor decided to cancel the internship and I wished I had taken the calculus class instead.

When I registered for college classes at my University, I was disappointed to see that I could not be in the same math class as my friends. They took the high school dual credit calculus which allowed them to enter Calculus 2. I still had to take Calculus 1.  If I had not gone for the internship I would have been able to graduate earlier.

Learning from Experience

In the end, the internship was an insightful experience. I think everyone can learn from everything –  even if things don’t always go exactly as planned. I really wish I would have taken the calculus class instead of the internship. But life is full of difficult decisions, and rather than focusing on a regret I learned to focus on what I learned from the experience.


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