Freshman year of college: what you need to know

IMG_2281So after two successful move in days, 4 semesters, countless late night study sessions, two majors, and living apartment-style this past year I think that I may have some wisdom to share with incoming college freshmen.

In college, you are given freedom that you never thought you would have. But this new freedom can be scary – this may be your first time away from home for an extended period of time. You may have never shared a room with anyone before. You may be in classes where you do not know a single soul whereas in high school everyone knew one another by name.

If you keep these things in mind for your first year of college I can assure you that it will be absolutely fine :).

Be friendly.

Say “hi” to that girl in passing that you recognize from your English class or chat up a girl who lives on your hall when you see her in the communal bathroom. Chances are that they are just as afraid to be here as you are, and you could end up making a new friend.

Study hard your first year. 

It is very easy to get wrapped up in going out even when you know that you have a huge Bio test on Thursday. My GPA suffered after my first year and I am still working on bringing it up. So do not make the same mistake I did and study, please!

The friends you make at orientation are not your be-all, end-all friends. 

So you are less than loving the friends you make at orientation, right? Keep in mind that you will continue to make friends over the course of your four years and you will meet tons of new people in classes and clubs.

Go to office hours. 

This is not something that I can stress enough. Office hours are times that your professor sets aside every week so that they can help you, so if you have a question about an upcoming quiz or are struggling in a class do not hesitate to visit office hours. It will only help to succeed (Psst! Professors will usually give you the benefit of the doubt when grading your assignments because they know you are a motivated student and care about doing well).

Actually make use of the on-campus gym.

The freshmen fifteen is real ladies! You will be amazed what just 30 minutes of running  a few times a week will do for both your mood and in keeping you fit.

It is okay if you do not go out every weekend. 

There is no shame in just wanting to veg out with your friends, watch bad movies and eat Chinese food. It is also fun to get off campus for a couple hours for a meal or something with your new friends.

Do not take 8 am classes. 

Every freshmen makes this mistake and hey, I took them first semester too. Just avoid these at all costs.

Communication with your roommates is important.  

Outline at the beginning of the year what you expectations are – how clean you like the room to be, what time you usually go to bed, when boys are allowed over, etc.  This will save a lot of frustration later on in the year when and if problems do arise. No one likes a passive aggressive roommate either!

Join clubs or sports. 

Meet people with interests similar to yours!

Cherish every moment of college because these are the best four years of your life.

Sorry – I had to get cheesy for a minute. In college, you are really able to grow into yourself. You can figure out what you really enjoy, what your values are, what you want to do for the rest of your life and more. It seemed like I just blinked and freshmen and sophomore year ended.