College Talk: Freshman Year

the-freshman-experience

Its almost the end of my freshman year of college and all I can say is it wasn’t what I expected.  Bright-eyed, bushy-tailed freshie no more.  Here are a couple helpful tips I’ve picked up over the year.

1) Move-In/Out: Try to move in or out as early as you can.  I suggest moving in early to get yourself better situated in your new dorm or apartment.  Moving in early also means beating the large crowds on the actual move in day.  Moving out early is always nice because that means you get to go home for summer or winter break earlier.  You may not feel like you’ll miss your family when you first leave for college but trust me, by the end of the year you’re itching to go home and see them!

2) Sorority Rush: I posted a short series last fall as I went through recruitment.  I’m going to touch on that again for the girls about to go through rush as well as what its like on the other side.  Rush and joining my sorority was one of my best decisions because it gave me an instant group of friends and made a large campus smaller.  Greek life isn’t for everyone but I do suggest going through rush even if you don’t join because you get to meet so many people.

3) Academics: People always say time and time again to stay on top of your schoolwork and go to class.  For some thats easier than others.  For myself, it was a bit difficult.  Living in a dorm there are always people around to distract you.  And since most dorms are on campus they’re near the hub of everything going on.  Why focus on school when there are so many other things to be doing everyday like lounging at the pool?  Trust me, spend at least a few hours everyday on work because if you don’t stay on top of your grades you are at high risk of losing scholarships.  You also never want to dig yourself in a hole that you can’t get out of later that semester.

4) Making Friends: You have to put yourself out there to meet people.  Its awkward but it works.  Its hard to make friends and meet new people when you’re in an all new environment.  You also have to keep in mind that there will always be people who don’t like you.  Thats unavoidable, just keep true to yourself and those haters will back off.  If you know who you are, you shouldn’t let anyone else tell you you’re someone you’re not. Hopefully they’ll respect you for being you.  If not, campus is usually big enough that you can’t avoid them.

5) Activities: I didn’t quite know what to call this category.  Get out there and do stuff!  Get involved in different activities, clubs, teams, groups on campus.  That was something I didn’t quite take advantage of and regret.  Next year I’m trying to do a lot more since I’ll actually know what all there is and be better at managing my time.  Also, Netflix doesn’t count as an activity.

6) Healthy Living: Freshman 15? Nah, won’t happen to me! Wrong.  Everything on campus is greasy and delicious and full of things that you don’t want to know about.  Then the gym will seem to just get farther and farther away from your dorm. Then you’ll realize you don’t have time to go to the gym because of all the studying you’re doing. . . . . or Netflix watching.  First semester I didn’t go to the gym once and ate BBQ pork quesadillas all the time.  This semester I started eating more fruits and veggies with my meals and going to the gym a couple times a week.  Not only did the freshman 15 disappear, but I feel so much better and more motivated to get things done.

7) Money: My last topic is financial.  Grades=scholarships.  Stay on top of that.  Also, be careful not to waste your money at the mall or at restaurants.  I spent wayyyy too much eating out with friends, painting coolers, and ordering clothes off tobi.  Create a budget before you starts school and tweak it a little after your first couple of weeks.  Then keep track of your spending.  Trust me when I say that broke college student status is no fun.

Those are just a couple things I wanted to share.  If y’all have any questions or want to know more about specific experiences just comment or shoot me an email. I’d be more than happy to help all you upcoming freshman!

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