Four years ago, I was starting my college career. While I was excited about this new chapter in my life, the fear of my new found independence had set in. What classes should I take? Where do I meet new people? How do I get good grades? The questions could’ve gone on forever.
This list highlights 8 things I wish I knew starting my freshman year.
1. Go to office hours
You might be thinking, “Why would I want to spend more time than I have to in the classroom?” But trust me, going to office hours could be the key to getting a higher grade (or even a passing grade!) Teachers love putting names to the faces they see in class and for the most part are very willing to help you if they see you putting in the extra effort.
2. Sleep is necessary
It wasn’t until my junior year that it hit me, pulling all-nighters is not an effective study habit. While it may give you more time to cram information, your brain does not do its best work without rest. Put down the flashcards and books earlier, you’ll notice a difference!
3. Great professors make all the difference
Many students choose classes based on time of day or topic (which is important), but having a good professor is the key to a successful term. There are many websites like Ratemyprofessor, that allow students to provide good and bad feedback for future students.
Also, don’t be intimidated to ask around campus as well, students are not afraid to give their opinion!
4. Learning the best ways to study is key
Over your college career, most of your time will be spent studying. It is important to figure out what study habits work best for you, whether it be making flashcards, re-reading class information or taking notes and making a study guide. Having solid study habits will be beneficial to your success throughout college.
5. Get involved around campus
What are you interested in? Because I’m sure there is a club for you to join! Whether you want to join a club as a résumé booster, networking tool or just to socialize – it is always a great thing!
Oh, and don’t forget about the intramural sports clubs, I played all 4 years and absolutely loved it!
6. Scholarships are everywhere
It’s no secret, the cost of college is daunting! Luckily, there are tons of scholarships available. Take advantage of it! Do research on what types of scholarships you qualify for and talk to scholarship counselors at your school. Trust me, your future bank account will thank you!
7. Take advantage of student discounts
As stated before, college is expensive! Another great way to save money is to take advantage of discounts that many companies offer to students! Student discounts that I personally used were through Apple, J Crew, Ann Taylor and Target – just to name a few!
8. Stay organized
Starting on the first day of the term, professors will assign mass amounts of reading, homework and quizzes. It is extremely important to stay organized and know when assignments are due. Unlike high school teachers, college professors have no grace for late work. Definitely invest in a good planner!
While there are many more things you will discover on your own over the next 4 years, hopefully these 8 pieces of advice give you a head start in your new adventure – good luck!