Hello everyone! I start my senior year of college THIS MODAY. Can we just take a second to let that sink in?
With that time of the year upon us, I would like to share a few tips that I wish I would have known my freshmen year. Obviously on the internet it’s very easy to find these posts, but there are things that surprised me going into college, so here we are.
- All that stuff you think you might need, you won’t.
Maybe it’s just me, but I couldn’t help thinking “Well I don’t know if I’ll need this, but I might, so I’ll get it.” No. Like you’ll just stuff it in your tiny dorm or send it back home. Make lists of everything absolutely necessary and then go buy whatever else you need once you’re sure. I especially did this with supplies. Five binders? Try two notebooks. Also, I’m a bookaholic as you know, but don’t bring a bunch of books that take up space (even if they’re sentimental) because you won’t have time to read them.
2.Be prepared, be prepared.
Not all of us are organized people, but in college you have to step up your game. I never used an agenda before college and now I couldn’t go without it.
I highly suggest to take all the given dates on the syllabi and write them down. If they change, just white out and go along, but this way you’ll have an idea. Without this I would seriously miss so many deadlines. It’s also a great way to see how your week will be and plan around school too.
I personally always use the Lilly ones, but I know that Kate Spade ones or Erin Condren ones are really popular too. Now, I don’t go crazy and spend hours planning. Personally, ain’t nobody got time for dat. BUT, I do like gel pens. Poppin makes great ones!
3.Time well spent.
It didn’t hit me until my junior year, but college is for my CAREER. The rest of my life. That’s important. Now, I’m not saying going to college defines a person, but for my field, it sort of does. There are so many exams I could have done better on if I had realized this. It’s much better to focus for a few weeks or months and to put social things on hold, and then enjoy them later with your success.
4.Don’t be afraid to be YOU.
I don’t know why, but this has been a struggle, especially in larger classes. I constantly feel like I am being judged and graded. College is a time to grow as a person and to figure out parts of life. WE ALL MESS UP. All of the students (well, most) are there to learn so don’t get embarrassed if you have a stupid question or don’t understand something. Once again, it’s better to get a good grade and learn than to just be quiet.
5.Don’t be afraid to talk to the professor.
All of my professors have been helpful and friendly. However I will say that I don’t think they understand what a timely email reply is. Anyways, one of my friends was going through this weird nocturnal phase and missed a calc exam, so he just explained it to his professor and what do you know? Got to retake it. Maybe that’s rare, but still, just ask. They know you’re not a super robot student.
6.Opportunity for studying abroad? Take it.
Traveling with your school is cheaper than not. It is a wonderful experience to have, you get to go somewhere new, fulfills a class, and looks good on a resume. ‘Nuff said.
7.USE THE LIBRARY.
8.Don’t waste money on vending machines.
I can only speak for myself, but I always see students spending dollar after dollar at vending machines. I understand that sometimes a caffeine or sugar fix is necessary, but it’s such a good investment to get a reusable water bottle. Camelbak is your friend.
9.Take time for yourself.
Taking time for yourself can be a hard one to do, but it’s important. When I started college I was all go, go, go, and then I got the flu for a week. Maybe that’s not medically linked, but I wasn’t taking care of my body. I now will pick a time of day and stop studying at that point, usually as long as I choose or is needed (within reason). Exercise, read, social media, watch Netflix, mani/pedi, do anything to release stress.
SO, I know it isn’t a lot, and I may end up adding to this list, but those are some tips that I wish I had known three years ago. Do you guys have any other helpful ideas? If so, let me know. After all I’ve still got a year left!