I'm A 14-Year-Old College Student—No, Really.

I'm A 14-Year-Old College Student—No, Really.

By Contributor

mbc2014 skipped a few grades—actually, she skipped high school. Intrigued? So were we! —Sparkitors

Yes, I’m in college. Yes, I’m fourteen years old. No, I wasn’t speaking a foreign language at the age of two. Nor was I counting coins or reciting the alphabet backwards or solving 10,000 piece puzzles all before I read Stephen King as a kindergarten homework assignment. I just like learning more than anything else, and my parents and I realized early on that my local high school just wasn’t going to work for me.

That's how I ended up at Mary Baldwin College in Virginia, where they have a program that allows girls my age to skip most or all of high school. There are about twenty other girls in my year, all ranging in age from 13 to 16. And while it’s a lot of fun —some of my best friends are now literally my neighbors— there are several downfalls to being in college during what would be my high school years.

Pro: My friends are in the same building as me. Instead of asking my mom for a ride or coordinating plans a few days in advance, I can just go up one floor, knock on my friend's door, and drag her outside to do something.

Con: My friends are in the same building as me. Stick forty-odd teenaged, hormonal girls into a three-floor dorm and you have the ultimate recipe for DRAMA. Fortunately, most of the time, it’s pretty mellow and drama-free, as we’re busy dying under mountains of homework. And since we’re in the same building with similarly constructed rooms, sleepovers are nothing like they were back home.

Pro: I get to learn some of the coolest stuff ever. I plan to take Forensic Chemistry and The History of Russia as two of my classes for next semester. Most of my classes are with students 18 and over, so my discussions and lectures are really thought-provoking and interesting.

Con: The homework. Right now, I've got a 12-page paper on witchcraft during the English Renaissance sitting on my desktop. And that’s just for one class. Based on my friends’ stories, if I were back in high school, I’d still be coloring pictures and writing five-paragraph essays. Also, I have mandatory study hours from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM on Sunday through Thursday nights. When I get really stressed, I end up envying my friends back home.

Pro: I have more freedom than I used to. I can go get dinner at a restaurant with some of my floormates, scavenge through an antique store for clothes with friends, or catch a movie on Saturday night with my roommate.

Con: I'm still a minor, which means my in-room curfew is 11:00 PM. I also can’t go outside the dorm’s one-mile radius. I can sign up for daily trips to Wal-Mart for necessities, and on Friday, we get to go to Target, but as younger students, we're supervised pretty closely. Sometimes, though, the staff will bend the rules for us; they're taking us to the midnight premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows later this month!

Hey, as long as you still get to see Harry Potter, it's all good! Do you guys have any questions for mbc2014?

Related post: 25 Things You'll Learn in College

Topics: college, homework, drama, friends, high school, classes, dorms, college life

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