BHGH ColoradoScholars

My College Experience in One Word: Unforgettable

Over the past three years of studying at the University of Northern Colorado, I have changed my major, my relationships, and most importantly, myself.   

In my first semester of college, I was a music business major and was following a routine of waking up, going to class, going home, finishing my work for the day, and then doing nothing for about 3-4 hours. Obviously it wasn’t like this every single day, but the point is that I wasn’t really having a college experience. I wasn’t going out of my way to meet new people.  I wasn’t getting involved.  I didn’t have a job.  And I had a whole lot of free time that I wasted on watching The Office. At the end of the 1st semester, the only accomplishment I had to my name was that I successfully passed all of my classes and didn’t drop out. Realizing that I didn’t want to go through this “boring” experience for another semester, I rushed a fraternity. I joined Delta Sigma Phi and loved being involved in Greek life. I was finally meeting new people, volunteering for events, and using my free time to be with my new brothers. By the end of my first year of college, I had joined a fraternity, I was on track with my major, and I was happy.  


My sophomore year of college was by far the most stressful year of my life. Going into the 1st semester of my second school year, I had just broken up with my girlfriend of 2 years.  My family had tons of issues.   I didn’t want to do music anymore and I had about $400 in my bank account. It didn’t take too long for me to crack under the pressure of not having anything figured out in my personal life and trying to balance 17 credit hours of school. I would skip class, party hard, and consistently make poor choices without thinking about the consequences. I finished that semester with a 1.18 GPA and a lot of people disappointed in me. My fraternity brothers reached out.  My friends back home reached out.  My advisors reached out, etc; but none of these groups gave me a significant wake up call like Boys Hope Girls Hope. After a long and well-needed phone call from Mary Fran and Laura, I was ready to get back on track and figure my stuff out. The next semester, I changed my major to general business.   I got a job at Red Lobster.  I was more involved with my fraternity and I picked up a position as the fundraising chair for my school’s Habitat for Humanity club. Not only did my grades improve that semester, but so did my relationships with the people in my life. 


Now, as a junior, I am already doing a great job with staying on track to graduate.  I haven’t missed a class.  I have turned in all of my assignments.  I have a steady job with flexible hours.  I am keeping in touch with my professional contacts (advisors, professors, etc.).   I am dating again.  I am running for president of the Habitat for Humanity club.   The fraternity I am in is thriving on campus.   I can finally say with confidence that for once in my life, I have things under control. I look forward to this school year and am eager to show everyone how much I have grown in these past three years.   


In the future, I hope to land a solid internship at a company doing anything business related, but preferably marketing and/or management. After I graduate from college, I want to have a career managing or promoting a business. What kind of business I want to get into is unknown for now, but I’m sure I will find my calling within the next 2 years. Thank you for believing in me!  

Juan Carbajal Jr.