Alex Bill—As a graduating senior from high school, there is the inevitable wonder and curiosity about the transition to college life. I’m here to give you the low-down on college life and the infamous Freshman Year!
1. Freshman 15…
This is one of those myths that if you really aren’t careful, it will creep in and surprise you three months into your studies. Campus tends to have a lot of foods that taste amazing, but aren’t amazing for you. If you make sure to be conscious about your food decisions, you shouldn’t have any problems. Don’t forget, there is an amazing gym here, it’s top-notch, and honestly it’s one of the most inviting gyms I have been to. Sure, there’s the really buff guys in the back destroying the racks and grunting loudly as they lift seemingly unbearable amounts of weight; don’t worry, no one is even looking at you!
2. Text Book$
Okay, so books are one of the subjects that really grinds a college student’s gears. I learned the hard way freshman year when I bought an exorbitant amount of books, only to have my professors switch or be told that I won’t need the books. Books are not cheap and getting the wrong ones absolutely sucks. So make sure that you wait to see what the professor tells you to do! It may seem like you are procrastinating, but it’s in the interest of your wallet to hold off the first week or two of classes to really see if you need to invest in the books for some classes. Often times a professor will assign a book for the class, but never even use it. So ask around and see if you really need to get the books for your classes. When all is said and done, make sure you are making use of those really expensive bricks. You don’t need a $200 paperweight.
3. 8 AM Classes
Listen, I know we all need our beauty sleep, but you really don’t want to sleep until 1 in the afternoon. When you don’t have a reason to get up early, it is way too easy to keep hitting that snooze button. Honestly, to get the most out of each day, I would advise taking early morning classes to get you moving. Even if it’s not 8 AM’s, make sure you’re getting most of your learning done in the morning so you can have your afternoons to relax. It may seem a little annoying and overwhelming to wake up so early the first few weeks of classes, but don’t worry, you’ll fall into a regular routine pretty quickly. You won’t regret those morning classes on the gorgeous fall Fridays when you’re done at noon.
4. Don’t Party Your Education Away
With the new-found freedom that most freshmen have been dying to have since they knew what college was, it tends to be really easy to go off the deep end. If you have a level head and you make sure that college is a priority, I definitely think that it is acceptable to let loose and have some fun on the weekends. Go out with your friends, go to the movies, and enjoy some time away from the hours of cramming for your math test. Weekends are there to relax and rejuvenate yourself for the upcoming week. So let your hair down and enjoy the finer things in life; just remember that come Monday, you must be prepared to take on the math test. This one can really fall on either side of the scale. Some people tend to have too much fun on the weekends and some people don’t have enough. Find your happy medium and college life will be swell.
5. Going to Class
It is a common misconception that because most college professors don’t take attendance, you don’t have to go to class. This is one of the biggest pitfalls to new students. While professors often times do not take attendance, they do notice if you don’t come. When it comes down to exam time and you don’t understand the material, professors will undoubtedly point out that you have not been putting in the time that they expect from you in their class. The last thing you want is a professor that is reluctant to help you pass their class. One class can make the difference in acceptance to your major of choice. So just go! Not to mention the fact that books definitely cannot substitute a good professor!
So there you have it, some things that I wish people would have told me about college before I made some of these silly mistakes. Remember, college is about learning and discovering who you want to be, so don’t be afraid to discover something new!