Now that I have a 19 year old son who rarely listens to anything I say, I decided to wish/hope/pray for time travel to whisk me back to 1981 when I was 19 years old and talk some sense into my youthful stupid head.
The summer I turned 19 I worked at the bank -- in the back, counting and filing checks all day -- and I saw firsthand what it looked like to be stuck in a dead-end job for years and years with no way out because of a lack of education. Even then, a college degree mattered. I was willing to get that degree but I still wasn't fully connecting the dots.
Since you are 19 I know you think you know everything and nobody can tell you anything but I am going to try. This is your 53 year old self talking. I've been through a lot of crap and you SHOULD LISTEN TO ME.
First of all, don't major in Drama. Yes, doing plays is fun, but you are never going to get cast as the ingenue because you're lumpy and not pretty enough. You won't get cast in character parts because you look too young. You can't really be a playwright yet because you have nothing to write about. You're never going to be a techie either. So just set aside that stuff and concentrate on what you're going to be good at one day: writing and editing.
Get yourself into the UGA journalism school.
Yes, I know they make journalism majors take some weird core classes like basic accounting and economics, but tell your dad to pry open his wallet and pay for a tutor, so you can get through those classes and get a journalism degree. You will not regret it. If you can't deal with that, major in marketing, so you can get into advertising. Being funny will really help there, and you are funny.
These decisions will affect your life for years to come.
When the girls in the dorm invite you to pig out, say NO. Eat a salad, not Skittles or M&M's. The eating habits you develop now will be habits that will help you in the long run.
DELAYED GRATIFICATION -- learn it, live it.
Go ahead and get involved in campus activities NOW. Don't wait until next year, or your senior year. Go ahead and join the literary society and the university union, and get OUT. Athens is a fun town. You are not having enough fun. You are too shy. Get over it. You shouldn't spend your college career watching TV and doing homework and eating pizza.
Quit being so judgmental. You are. Quietly. Not all of the students who are really different from you - like the ones with blue hair - are wackos. Some of them are just different and creative. They have more courage than you do. Get to know some of them. Also, don't reject the sorority girls automatically either. Some of them are worth knowing too. Be friendly and approachable to every kind of kid on campus. Don't be aloof.
Get out at least once a month and go to the 40 Watt or some other club and DANCE. These are the dancing years.
Don't drink so much beer. Bad for the waistline and yucky hangovers are not worth it. Ditto for Diet Coke. Not healthy.
Budget your time so you can study and make good grades AND have fun.
I know you don't believe it but at 19 you CAN have the best body of your life. Get out and play sports. Swim more. Play more tennis. Get outside. Enjoy your body and appreciate it NOW - because it's all downhill after 25. By 30 you will start having little aches and pains. By 40, unless you are a workout fanatic, it will NOT BE FUN to have your body. Prevent that now.
Do not hang out with anyone who does any kind of drug. I know you don't do drugs, you just like to watch others act stupid. Just avoid folks who are using. Too hazardous.
Write every day, about everything. Start the habit now, even though you don't have a computer. Observe.
Go out and LIVE. Fall in love. Play. Write. Learn. Don't wait for your life to start. It has already started.