I am UIC: A reflection on being a ‘wise fool’ again


First day of class

First day of fall semester 2018. Photo: Jenny Fontaine

I remember being told my second year of high school that “sophomore” means “wise fool.”  This is quite an accurate statement considering sophomore year does not stand out that much from the other years of high school. Freshman year is when everything is new, junior year is when classes get harder and when one has to start preparing for college applications, and senior year is the final year. Sophomore year exists as the bridge from underclassman to upperclassman, during which not much is new for students but they still do not have to extensively think about their futures.

After four years, I find myself once again a sophomore — this time in college. While I have only completed one week of this semester so far, I do feel that the whole idea of being a “wise fool” almost still true.

The “wise” part is similar to how it was in high school. Not much is new: I can easily find my way around campus (though BSB is still a maze) and I am use to the general rhythm of student life. When I came back from summer break, I felt almost as if I never left.

The “fool” part has slightly changed. Yes, sophomore year still acts as a bridge between being an underclassman and an upperclassman. However, while sophomores still do not have to be certain about their major or career goals, there is a looming pressure that they should. A friend recently told me that after sophomore year, school gets more serious and people should know what they want to be doing by then. As a person who is not quite sure what she wants to do with her life yet, my reaction to that was “stop telling me this.” I do understand the pressure to have life figured out. Soon, I will be halfway done with college. The thought is nerve-racking.

When the stress to have more certainty about the future hits, it helps to remember that life does not have to be figured out by a certain day. Goals are important but it is also important to take life one day at a time.


Weronika Jozwiak is a sophomore majoring in English. She enjoys watching animated movies, puns and birdwatching. She is not quite sure what she wants do in the future, but she hope that she will be able to find fulfillment in the little things in life and will be able to drink tea to her heart’s content.

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