Monday, November 5, 2012

20 Tips for Freshmen

There's quite a few things I've learned in the first two months of living in the dorms and being away from home. Here's to the kids, like me, who need to know what they're getting into ahead of time, and for those parents who are sending their babies away for the first time.

1. Talk to your roommates ahead of time, maybe even meet them in person before you move in. It helps to know a little bit about who you're living with your first year.

2. Don't bring EVERYTHING to your dorm room yet. You should meet your roommates, see what they have, and figure out what you still need and what you want with you.
3. Get to know your roommates more when you stay that first weekend and hang out with them before classes start up.
4. Also meet your RA, as you'll be going to him/her if you have any problems with your roommates or the people on your floor.
5. Introduce yourself to the people on your floor. They could be your new best friends, or your enemies. Try to know everyone by name before too long.
6. If you have a problem with someone on your floor, or if their music is too loud, don't be afraid to let them know. If they're like my floor family, they'll be respectful of the other people living there.
7. If you have a choice, choose the bottom bunk. Trust me.
8. When you register for classes, try and give yourself breathing room. Ease into how college classes work, because they're a lot different than high school.
9. Check your email often, two or three times a day. Especially before classes, because you'll want to know if they're cancelled or there's a change in an assignment due date. The professors are pretty good with keeping up in emailing and communication with their students.
10. Get involved. Play a sport, volunteer, find a job on campus. This is the time to get out of your comfort zone and find out what you like, who you are as a person, and what you want to do with the rest of your life.
11. If you have questions about classes, minors/majors, and/or careers, talk to academic advisers. They're there to help you in anyway they can.
12. Make a schedule, give yourself time to study and complete assignments early. Procrastination is a terrible habit, and it won't suit you in college. Unless you're the type of person who can write an essay the night before it's due and still do well on it.
13. If you're like me and are having a hard time adjusting, just give yourself time. Not everything in life is going to be easy, especially moving away from home and growing up.
14. Scheduling your classes is the best thing about college. Seriously.
15. ALWAYS lock your door and keep your key and student ID with you. Don't lose them.
16. If you're at a huge university, there will always be something to do. Go to football games, use the gym, join an IM sport, go to a concert. You'll never be bored.
17. Learn how to do laundry before you move in, or you'll have to call your mom up and ask her what to do. :P
18. Use the writing centers and tutoring if you are having a hard time with your classes. They'll help you succeed and do well.
19. Always be respectful of your roommates and their things. In time, you might even become really good friends with them. But until then, you're still living with strangers and it won't work if there are problems.
20. One last thing; You'll learn a lot about yourself and about what you can handle. You'll learn the kind of people you want in your life and who you should stay away from. You'll figure out what you want to do with the rest of your life and what you want in your future. But until then, take a breath and enjoy life; don't let it pass you by.

These are just a few important things that I think will help you when you're getting ready to move into a college dorm for the first time. Everyone will handle the change of moving away from home differently, but this is a change that everyone will go through in life.