Ways to Survive Sophomore Year


 Entering your sophomore can be very daunting, but it’s actually an essential part of the process of becoming a full-fledged undergrad. Whereas being a freshman is about getting your first whiff of higher education, becoming a sophomore is about finally adjusting to this whole new world you are in.

But for many students, the second year of being in college is a critical point where they can choose whether to soldier on, or do a 360 degree turn from what lies ahead. For some reason, a lot of students are possessed by the idea that their sophomore year is where things get rather serious. Freshman year still had the remnants of high school linger in one’s, but the process of becoming a sophomore is where students finally molt away whatever attachments they still have for their previous alma maters.

Unless you are someone who doesn’t worry about changes, the transition can get pretty drastic and perplexing. Then again, you can always apply the following tips to make the whole process less hectic than it actually is.

Learn from last year

As a freshman, you might have had experienced a few awkward moments when you first entered the gates of your university. Bringing them up isn’t actually the best way to move on. But you can still learn from all these experiences to make sure you won’t repeat them in your second year.

Was there ever a cringe-worthy moment you wanted to get rid of? Instead of forgetting about it, you should be able to analyze the situation objectively so as to get a good idea on what to improve for your second year in college. If ever there was this one moment you wouldn’t want to  forgive yourself for, see to it that you won’t repeat the same mistake.

Exercise frugality

Being in college means breaking free from the your parents’ chain of command. But while it may seem like a teenager’s dream come true, being in college is obviously a training ground that you have to go through in order to become a full-fledged adult. Aside from the fact that it gives you a taste of what it feels like to be a professional, college is also where you get to become more financially wise.

With that said, it is essential for students to become more mindful of what they could spend. We all heard of undergrads who live off of instant ramen every day, but the thing is, such situations actually happen. Entering your sophomore year means making smarter financial decisions, like purchasing coupons from sites like Gogoshopper.com and taking up freelance jobs.

Aside from these basic financial hacks, you might also want to develop an idea for a business model. This might sound like something management students should do, but it also applies to anyone who wants to build a money-making idea. You can’t be like Mark Zuckerberg, but as long as you have an authentic idea to share, expect people to pitch in. Besides, sophomore year doesn’t have the same difficulty that later years possess, so you should be able to use what free time you have in order to develop your startup idea.

 Arm yourself

Sophomore year marks the beginning of when things get really hard. But it’s essential to make sure you are fully prepared for the heavy grind that awaits you in your Junior and Senior years. Sophomore year can get difficult in its own right, but the difficulty is essential in preparing you for an uphill battle. Take this time to develop a more focused mindset and build up your momentum.

Get social

Sophomore year is also that time in your life where  you get to meet new people – people who will help you out in the future. The dynamics of socialization in college is far different from that of high school, mostly because of the fact that college is more closer a microcosm of society as a whole. You will get to meet a diverse range of characters whose stories are as complicated as yours. What’s more, the way you connect with these characters determines what you would be like in the future as a professional within the more complex structures of the corporate world. Freshman year is more like your orientation into such a world. Sophomore year on the other hand is where you get to put theory into practice. In other words, it is where you get to come out of your shell and be more open towards other people. This will certainly lead to a more active social life later on. As you make more friends, you will understand the value of networking more and more.

Feel at home with your professors

You can be the best of friends with your highschool teachers, but the same level of intimacy doesn’t exactly apply to college professors – well, at least to some. There are many different types of teachers as there are students. You will get a dictator for your geology class or a staunch progressive in your humanities course. Whichever case, you as a sophomore could find an ally in anyone who basically determines whether you pass or not. Remember: in college, you’re the one who’s always looking for your teacher and not the other way around. With that said, cooperation is always the key, and it’s very important to emphasize the way you reach out to your professors.


Take part in extra academic activities

College isn’t all about studying. It is also a great way to explore your interests further. Higher education aims not only to uplift the intellectual capacity of an individual. It also allows individuals to be more cognizant of the things that they are capable of doing. If you’ve been a part of the varsity team before, chances are, you will be hand-picked for a place at the university’s sports formations. Coaches usually take their picks from freshman batches, but they also get to scout for sophomore talents. Aside from sports, your passion for the arts will also get noticed – that is if you put your work out there or take part in auditions for the theatre. Doing something else other than consuming ramen and studying will certainly make things a lot less dull.

Melissa Burns graduated from the faculty of Journalism of Iowa State University. Nowadays she is an entrepreneur and independent journalist. Follow her @melissaaburns or contact at burns.melissaa@gmail.com







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