Every year across the country, many young, wide-eyed, curious freshmen pile into cars as they all head to their respective universities. So, I thought I would lump some tips together for all of the new students, because why not? Some of these things seem like common sense and others are more of an encouragement. So…here it goes.
1) There is a lot of stuff.
I had boxes, bags, and a suitcase. But, that is okay. You are moving and no one is going to tell you that you over packed because if anything, there will be many trips to Wal-Mart before you have everything you need.
2) Take some time to make your room your home away from home.
One of my favorite things about my room was my bulletin board with the pictures of my family and friends. Your room should be somewhere where you are comfortable 100% of the time. I printed out Bible verses and hung string lights to make it as cozy as possible.
3) Sometimes it is okay to not know someone in lecture.
In high school it was fun having classes with friends. Don’t get me wrong, I loved having chemistry with one of my best friends, however, I found it was easier to focus when I did not know anyone. Literally the only choice I had was to focus.
4) GO TO CLASS!
I know this is something you have heard at orientation, you have heard it from parents, teachers, managers, friends, older siblings, and just about everyone else. Now, you are going to hear it from me. GO TO CLASS! When you miss a class, even if it is just one day, it will feel like you missed a lifetime of information. Plus, some teachers give surprise extra credit if you are in class on a certain day.
5) Do something other than school work.
Whether it is Greek life, clubs, work, campus ministry, etc. FIND SOMETHING! It is an easy way to meet people who are interested in the same thing you are and it is nice to have a study break every once in a while.
6) Walk around campus before classes start.
It is a stressful thing to show up late the first day of classes. I recommend walking around campus to go find your classes so you know exactly where you are going, especially since some buildings are numbered weird.
7) Get to know your RAs
It was a huge help for me to be comfortable talking to my RAs. They are there to help. They have been through the stressful nights and they know exactly what to say when the neighbors are being too loud. Plus, it does not hurt to have someone else in your circle of people.
8) Go to office hours.
Sometimes in the large lecture classes it is hard to ask questions, especially if the professor has a plan for the day. Going to office hours allows for you to get to know the professor and for your specific questions to have specific answers. It also keeps you from having to ask a question with 200 other people watching, which can be a daunting task.
9) It is okay to watch Netflix
Yes, I am encouraging you to have Netflix watching sessions. Yes, it is good to get out and meet people, but other times it is good to wind down and spend time by yourself so you can recharge. I chose Grey’s Anatomy. I suggest not choosing something so addictive when you have a test coming up.
…Last but not least…
10) You are not alone
A majority of the people around you do not know anyone either. There will be people alone in class too. There will be people who are also trying to find the place they fit in.
Alright freshmen, one last thing…