Tips for New College Students

Keep these in mind this fall

Are you an incoming freshman this fall? If you are feeling nervous about the experience, keep the following tips in mind when you move onto campus. They may just help you out.

Hit every orientation. Even if it seems boring or cheesy, it is the best way to find out how to navigate your campus, the rules of the road and especially what’s expected of you as a student on campus.

Get some experience living away from home beforehand. If there’s time and you’ve never even spent one night at summer camp, be sure to try house-sitting, a week-long camp or some other time away from home to get a taste of living on your own.

Have an open mind and be willing to learn as you go. Instead of getting wrapped up in the process of picking a major and meeting weekly with an advisor (tip: most advisors do not meet with students weekly!), take a breath and approach everything with an open mind.

Take advantage of the resources available to you! Check to see if your college has free tutoring, a clinic, a writing center, an exercise hub you can use… Most colleges have lots of free resources for students.

Get your books discount. With a few exceptions, most students purchase their books used. You can even read some of them for free online. Research each book before you spend hundreds of dollars on textbooks. You can also borrow them sometimes—some colleges even rent out books.

Use a planner. It’s the best way to stay on top of your assignments, tests and due dates.

Take photos. It’s easier than ever with your phone handy, but plenty of college grads regret not taking enough pics as undergrads. You may also want to keep a journal to chronicle your experiences.

Keep some time for yourself. Lots of new students get stressed about their grades and homework level without taking personal time to relax. That said, be sure to stay on top of your assignments and deadlines.

Also be sure to get involved on campus and make friends, whether it’s with a fraternity, sorority or service project. Also consider choir, debate and the honors program. Just do your homework and decide which the best fit is for you and refrain from over-committing so you don’t have too deep a load. Be sure to make friends with a couple of people living in your residence hall to make sure you always have someone you can call or ask for help.


Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

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