BY MARY OSBORNE
Starting a new college could be a nerve wrecking experience. You walk into a new institution where you know absolutely no one and have to spend the next three or four years there. So, here are ten tips for your freshman year at college that will, hopefully, make your life easier:
- Engage with the experience
College is what you make of it. You can spend time working out and hang out with friends or you could speak up in class, get to know the professors, and learn an interesting new skill. Basically, these four years are all yours to experiment with, so engage with the experience and take the time to shape your life.
- Learn beyond the curriculum
Life will, eventually, teach you way more than you’ll ever learn in the classroom. But that doesn’t mean there’s no space for organized learning. Reach out and grab every ounce of knowledge you can. Learn beyond what the college offers by joining a cooking class or learning online. You can focus on reading and learning as much as possible during college, so take advantage of it.
- Save money on books
Buy the books online or loan them from a friend who’s done the same course. College textbooks can be really expensive.
- Get a job
Experimenting with starter jobs while you’re in college is the best way to build experience and get to know the world outside. A job that ties into what you’re learn at college will help you in ways you can’t even imagine.
- Don’t lose old friends
Take the time to reconnect with old friends and regularly go home to see family. Everyone needs a support structure and you have to maintain the network you have back home.
- Find yourself
Be silly and irrational while you’re still young. Learn from your mistakes and take every experience as a stepping stone to finding yourself. Every success or failure you have at this stage will shape you into the adult you’ll be forever.
- Balance work and life
Your years at college will fly back faster than you expect. Most students spend their nights partying, days at lectures, and countless hours in the library completing assignments. There are projects and deadlines that will eventually clash with all your personal and professional commitments. Balancing work and life is probably the most important skill you’ll learn in college.
Don’t let the pressure and anxiety get to you. Take a breath and relax.
- Stay healthy
Use the college gym and walk to wherever you can. As you sharpen your mind in class, it’s important to avoid neglecting your body. Sleep well, eat right, and workout as much as you can at the college gym.
- Tackle finances
The average college student leaves with a huge pile of debt. Add credit cards, rent, groceries, and travel to the list and you can see why college is the best place to learn how to budget and handle your personal finances.
College is likely to be a wonderful experience. Don’t be nervous and follow these ten tips to make the most of these crucial years.
Bio: Mary Osborne is a blogger and educator from Boston. She enjoys reading, discovering new places, and meeting new people. Mary believes that we can make this world a better place by respectfully treating our environment.