20 Tips for Freshmen to Have a Good College Life
Put your high school days behind you. College is an opportunity for you to start things over from scratch. Do you want to be more responsible, more independent or make new friends? This is the place for you to conquer it all.
Freshman year can be stressful and scary. Most students move away from their family and friends for the first time and have to learn how to do things on their own.
But, freshman year can also very exciting and fun. Freshman year sets the pace for the rest of college, so it’s important to do it right. Here are our 20 tips on making the most out of your freshman college life!
Get to Know Your Professors
College classes can be really big and intimidating. This is most likely something you aren’t used to from your high school classes. Most students don’t get to know their college professors. But, don’t be afraid of introducing yourself to them and getting to know them better. Go to their office hours and get extra help on class work. These are people that can later write you references or even offer you research positions.
Explore Your Campus
It’s easy to stick to the area of your residence hall and classes. Don’t be afraid of getting out of your comfort zone and exploring. Join a campus tour and learn about new things your campus has to offer.
Get a Part-Time Job
If possible, get a job related to your major. For many students, college is a time where they will need to support themselves financially for the first time. Getting a job in a research lab, as a tutor, or a babysitter can be a great way to make money.
Live in a Residence Hall
Choose to live in the residence halls. This is a great opportunity to make friends. Get to know your roommate(s) and hallmates. Those people may become your best friends throughout all of college and even life.
Try New Clubs
College offers many different clubs. It’s a great opportunity for you to discover new passions and hobbies, and of course make new friends.
Have Quality Alone Time
It’s easy to get wrapped up in all of the fun activities that college has to offer. But, it’s important to set aside some time for you to be alone and relax. Do whatever calms you down like yoga, reading, or writing in a journal.
Get a Summer Internship Related to Your Major
This is a great way to explore your major and make sure you’re interested in it.
Keep a Journal
Write down your thoughts and feelings about college in a journal. There’s nothing more fun than going back and rereading how you’ve changed over the years.
Use the Career Center on Campus
The career center can be a great resource whether you have a major or not. The professionals there can help you plan and prepare for your future.
Create a Resume
If you don’t have a resume yet, this is a good time to create one. And if you already have one, why not perfect it? Have a professional check it. This is also a good time to create a personal website showing off your work.
Don’t Go Home Too Much
Try to stay on campus as much as possible. It’s natural to feel homesick. But, the more time you spend getting to know your campus and new friends, the more you’ll feel like campus is your home.
Don’t Buy Textbooks from the Bookstore
The bookstore is a huge rip-off and will completely deplete you of your money. You can buy the books used or rent them online.
Go to Career Fairs
This is a great opportunity to secure a summer job, or learn about new organizations.
Find a Study Place
In college, you’re going to be doing a lot of studying and paper writing. Find the place where you won’t be distracted. This may be a coffee shop or library on campus.
This may be the first time that you will have to organize everything by yourself. Buy an agenda, use an app or a calendar. Do whatever works for you so that you pay your bills on time and turn in your assignments by their due date.
Don’t fall victim to the freshman 15. Without mom there giving you healthy meals, you can easily get away with eating pizza for breakfast and ice cream for dinner. Avoid the freshman weight gain by choosing healthy food options in the dining hall and joining the school gym.
Go to Class
While this one may seem like an obvious thing to do, in college it’s not. Don’t let all the freedom you have stop you from going to class. Even if you’re classes are early and you stayed up late the night before, it’s important to make it to class, especially when your teacher takes attendance.
Get to Know Your Advisor
Your advisor can help you with problems you’re having in classes, adding or dropping classes, and scheduling for future semesters. They can also help you choose your major and minor. If you don’t click with your assigned advisor, don’t be shy to ask to switch.
Register for Classes Early
Register as early as you possibly can for classes. Courses fill up fast. If you are interested in a course that’s full, don’t give up. An opening may appear. If it doesn’t, show up to the class on the first day. The professor may give you approval to join.
Scholarships aren’t only for high school seniors entering their freshman year. You can keep applying to scholarships every year. Plus, many scholarships are available all year-round.