To commit or not to commit

What does it mean to “commit?” I have seen the word used recently in terms of choosing a college, but I am not sure if that word fits so well. My mom and I had a discussion about the word and how it is used.

“Saying you’re going to commit is like you’re joining a religious order! Are you a nun, joining the Church of College?” my mom said.

At first, I was a bit hesitant in seeing her position. Saying you are committing to a college was not as different as deciding to go to a college, right?

But as I looked up the definition of committing, my opinion drastically changed. Committing is the same as pledging or binding oneself to an institution and is definitely too strong for referring to go to college.

In this way, I think we have put too much emphasis on college as some dramatic shift in our lives, where suddenly we will take on all burdens of adulthood. But college is just a new setting and yet another opportunity to experience new things. It is not the journey, but a step on the larger journey of life, and not something that will absolutely change everything about ourselves.