Congratulations! You made it through the long harrowing college application process, received your acceptance letter, and now you’re prepping for your first year at college. Between exploring campus, making new friends and earning a quality education, this is definitely one of the most exciting times in your young life. With all these new opportunities waiting ahead, you probably feel equally as nervous as you feel enthusiastic about entering college. Don’t worry we have you covered. Use these tips to ensure an effortlessly smooth transition from high school into your first year of college.
Sharing a dorm room is a quintessential college experience; so try not to feel nervous about meeting your new roommate. If you choose to room with a friend, (or someone you already know from college orientation), that’s great and you probably already have a game plan! But if you wind up sharing a dorm room with someone you don’t know (like most freshmen), don’t forget that they’re just as nervous about meeting you.
Break the ice by adding them on your preferred social media outlet, and start a conversation. Use this conversation to establish room rules and decide on materials (like a mini-fridge) to bring. You’ll be sharing a space with this person, so you need to build a friendly, open atmosphere. Your room is in the exact same position as you, so try to shoulder the burdens of co-living together. If, however, you both discover that you’re incompatible as roommates, most colleges allow you to switch roommates after the first two weeks.
College is a great place to meet new people and explore your interests. Your college likely houses many different clubs and organizations that you can join to do just that. From Greek organizations and intramural sports to student government, you’re bound to find groups of like-minded students. Even better, clubs are the perfect way for shy students to meet people with similar interests and forge lasting friendships.
While fun, college is also the time to mature and start making important decisions on your own. Set up a time and place for work, create laundry schedules, and make sure you are eating healthy. It is so easy to take advantage of your newfound freedom and to forgo some of your responsibilities. Unfortunately, you’ll have to deal with the consequences. The “freshman 15,” for instance, is real and not something you should ever take lightly. Keep up with your responsibilities, take care of yourself (mentally and physically), and you’re bound to have a great first year of college.
Now that you’re on top of all your health and lifestyle responsibilities, it’s time to worry about your coursework. With all the new friends, clubs, and freedoms that come with college, it’s easy to fall behind on your studies. Don’t get too comfortable with all the extracurricular activities and forget the original purpose of attending college. Remember, your mom isn’t there to bug you about studying for the important exam.
Make sure your course load for your first semester, if not your first year, is relatively light. Remember: you’re still adjusting to college life; so having a manageable first semester is paramount. Make sure enroll in courses you can handle to help yourself move from high school to the college-level work. Finally, if you find yourself struggling in a class, don’t be afraid to visit your professors’ office hours or sign up for a tutor at the academic support center.
College is such an exciting time, and you have so much to look forward to in the next few years. Get ready to meet so many new people, learn about topics you never thought would interest you, and transition from childhood into adulthood. The world is your oyster! As long as you keep yourself grounded and motivated, you should have no problem with your first year of college! For even more tips and advice about your college experience, remember to subscribe to our blog.