Freshman year of college is arguably the hardest. You’re often living somewhere new, with more independence, and taking academically rigorous courses. That being said, there’s a lot of great things about starting college as well. Here’s my 5 things every college freshman should know.
1. Take school seriously
I know it can be hard when it comes to taking boring GEs to push yourself to go to your 8 a.m. and study for your exams, but DO IT. These classes often decide whether or not you make it into your major specific classes. Additionally, either you or someone else is paying a TON of money for you to earn a higher education. Don’t waste that money. Do your homework, show up to class, and study.
2. Get Involved
When it comes to college, many students choose to focus purely on academics but getting involved can help a ton. Go to your involvement fair and learn about a few clubs or Greek organizations that you can get involved in. Many schools have varying levels of athletics as well, so while you may not be a D1 soccer star, intramural soccer is still a great way to stay in shape. Additionally, joining these clubs and organizations helps you network and can potentially even help you to get a job in the future.
3. Be Safe
With new found freedom and opportunity, a lot of people use college as an excuse to make dumb decisions. Don’t do anything that you’ll regret and please be safe about everything. Don’t meet up with tinder strangers, don’t take open drinks at parties, and always follow the buddy system at night. It also never hurts to carry pepper spray with you, especially if you live off campus. Also, while no one wants to be a debt downer, when your friends or others get a little too wild, watch out for them as well. They may hate you in the moment but thank you later.
4. Have Fun
While you’re studying and getting involved, it’s also important to have a little fun every once in awhile. While you should really go to class, skipping one to see your fav band in concert won’t hurt you. Also feel free to make fun events incentives for doing well academically. Get an A on your exam? Go out with your friends and have fun. Take college seriously but don’t hate the experience.
5. Be Yourself
While it can be easy to change yourself to fit in better/make more friends, DONT! The only way you’ll truly be able to enjoy college is if you make legitimate friends who are similar to yourself. While you may not find them the first day, you will find you friend group eventually.
Additionally, don’t feel like you need to change any of your morals just because you want to fit in. If you don’t want to drink (because it’s illegal and can be unsafe), don’t. If you don’t want to do drugs (same reason as drinking), don’t. I promise you can still go to parties and dance and have fun with your friends while you’re sober. If you don’t want to do anything, don’t. I promise you that there are plenty of other people who have the same morals. If anyone tries to push you to do something you’re not comfortable with, then I promise you they’re not your friend.
Good luck on your freshman year and keep these lessons in mind.
YouTube: Katelyn Leigh