Wednesday, August 10, 2016

College Advice for Freshman

My little sister starts her first year of college this month! I can't believe she's old enough for college (or to move 6 hours away *tear*). I swear she was just playing doll house! But alas, children grow up. I know she'll do amazing in college, but I still wanted to give her some advice for her first year at college and away from home.

I'm sure a lot of you are also going through  that huge change of starting your first year of college and your first year of living on your own. It's a big change and pretty (really) scary for most people. As someone who just made it through four years of college, I have some advice for you!

30 pieces of advice for college freshman

  1. Take a deep breath. You can do this!
  2. Don't be afraid to say "hi" to people.
  3. Go to class. This seems like a "duh!" thing, but you'd be surprised how easy it is to skip when you don't have anyone telling you to go.
  4. Read the syllabus. Here is a great guide to help you use your syllabus in college.
  5. Use a planner.
  6. Don't procrastinate.
  7. Try just about anything the first month of college - nothing illegal or dangerous, though.
  8. Join 2 on-campus organizations. They're fun and a great way to meet new people. Just don't go crazy and join too many - it can get overwhelming, especially if you start getting active in all of them.
  9. Give yourself some rules - a bedtime, a limit on how often you'll eat out, when you'll study, etc.
  10. Make time for friends.
  11. Call home. As often as you want.
  12. You'll be stressed and that's okay. 
  13. Learn how to manage stress.
  14. Learn time-management skills - start early on assignments, use the pomodoro technique, use a planner, make a daily/weekly to-do list, and find what works for you.
  15. Try your best.
  16. Be yourself!
  17. Make time to do things you enjoy.
  18. Don't be afraid to talk to the professor and visit during office hours.
  19. Study. Often. Don't wait until the day before the exam.
  20. Surround yourself with positive people.
  21. Everyone is struggling. Don't feel like you're the only one.
  22. Do every assignment and turn it in on time.
  23. Ask questions.
  24. Take a break when you need one and practice self-care.
  25. Go to bed before midnight. Your body will thank you. 
  26. Eat your fruits and vegetables.
  27. Go to the gym or work out from time to time.
  28. Get to know your RA.
  29. Go to hall events and get to know some of the people on your floor.
  30. This isn't high school. College is going to be a lot different as far as amount and type of classwork you'll be doing, what you have to do in class to be successful, and general life responsibilities. It's all up to you now!
  31. Talk to your roommate! You want to be get to know her a bit!
  32. Don't feel like you have to be friends with your roommate. It's important that you can get along well enough to live together in peace, but you don't have to go on shopping trips together or have movie nights. Lots of roommates don't end up being best friends and that's okay.
  33. Clean your room. Tidy up once a week and don't forget to vacuum and wipe things down from time to time.
  34. Do your laundry at least every other week.
  35. Take your trash out. You don't want your room to smell like a fast food restaurant. 

Good luck to all the freshman reading this! I know college seems super scary when you start it, but I promise you'll have lots of fun. Just remember to balance fun times with friends with studying and maybe a bit of chores.

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