5 Life-Saving Tips for New College Students

Posted July 29, 2015 by
student closing her ears and screaming at school

Student closing her ears and screaming at school. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

With advice coming from teachers, parents, counselors, and friends, it can be impossible to make sense of all the new information for college freshmen. Many new students are often overwhelmed and find that their first semester was not indicative of their past scholarly ventures. In order to hit the ground running you will need to prepare appropriately. Here are five simple ways to thrive in college:

Learn Aggressively

College is a student’s first experience with having complete freedom in learning. No one will check in on whether you attend class or what grades you’re getting. It will be on you to learn aggressively: sit in the front row of the lecture hall, go to your professor’s office hours, and use tutoring services offered by the college library.

Get Ahead with Online Classes

The last few years have seen a huge rise in online and hybrid classes that combine online lectures with classroom demonstrations and projects. Online classes, like this masters in nursing online, can often be a great way to keep up with degree requirements over the summer or take a course that isn’t offered by your home university. Make sure that any online credits offered by another institution will transfer to your university before going through with an offsite method of education.

Say Yes to Everything; Cut Back When Necessary

Many college freshmen hesitate to take on extracurricular activities as they’re afraid of being overwhelmed in their first year. However, these same people often find themselves wondering why they haven’t had an easy time making friends. At the beginning of your first year, say yes to everything: join an intramural team, sing in a choir, go to a party and meet tons of people. On the other hand, cut back when something isn’t working; don’t waste time on an activity you dislike when there are endless options for new experiences.

Take Care of Your Mental Health

College can be an overwhelming transition. Your university most likely offers counseling and psychological services for free; don’t be afraid to use them! Depression and anxiety are common among college students and you never have to go through them alone.

Don’t Be Afraid to Make a Change

Your time in college is short and so if you aren’t in love with your university, look into transferring. There is nothing wrong with a little change to get the right feel. One third of college students transfer before graduating – seek the best fit for you even if it means making a change. You might even consider changing majors or not even deciding on a major until your undergrad is finished.

Remember that everyone wants you to succeed! Take advantage of every resource available to you and have an amazing time during your college years.

Anita is a freelance writer from Denver, CO and often writes about education, business and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family when she isn’t writing.

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