Use daily challenges to prepare for real world

We all know the cliche saying that college “expands a person’s horizons,” but there is truth in the idea that the life lessons derived from living without one’s parents are more valuable than anything one can learn in a classroom.

The ability to manage small, everyday crises marks the true transition into adulthood. Adulthood is not only about learning outside the classroom or simply living independently, but it’s also about the ability to handle the everyday crises alongside one’s main duties as a student or employee. Dealing with problems like paying your own phone bill while juggling either schoolwork or office life defines the real world more than completing homework assignments or writing essays.

School assignments may confine you to a certain set of methods, but in the real world you must think outside the box to solve problems. I am not an engineering major, but I once developed a contraption using a hook, duct tape and a pool-cleaning tool to fish keys 12 feet out of a sewer on a dark Friday night. This success helped me develop confidence in navigating the real world.

I am certain I will use my advertising knowledge to reach future clients, but I am much prouder that I have managed to unclog a toilet, trap and dispose of rats, and create a makeshift bandage for my roommate’s wound.

Whether these challenges end in independent learning or bawling on the phone begging someone for help, “living independently” goes beyond just having your own place. These daily challenges provide something more educational than a multiple choice test where there will always be a right or wrong answer. Unpredictable and unannounced, daily challenges test your flexibility, and without one correct answer, they test your creativity. With determination and ingenuity, you can prevent these challenges from leaving you a disheveled mess.

After all, even billionaires once plunged their own toilet.

Alyssa Jacobson is a senior majoring in advertising and political science.

October 1, 2014


Alyssa Jacobson

Around the Web

The series—which will feature experts discussing their groundbreaking research on corals, ocean and atmospheric science, and how climate change is forcing communities to alter their long-range plans—will begin this week. ...

Octavia Bridges, a 20-year veteran of the University of Miami Police Department, has been promoted to oversee crime prevention and community relations on the Coral Gables Campus. ...

The Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection has given social scientists and psychologists another example to examine the behavior and actions of groups. ...

Some experts believe that pent-up demand will push the economy into a rebound after the majority of the U.S. population receives the COVID-19 vaccine. ...

All students are required to test negative for COVID-19 before attending any in-person classes, programs, or work shifts on any University of Miami campus. With the start of classes Monday, here is the critical information students need to know. ...

TMH Twitter
About Us

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published in print every Tuesday.