For those of you going off to college for the very first time, I wanted to pass along some tips that I wish I had been given when I was beginning college two years ago.
- Explore the campus
Exploring your campus is so important. Take the time to book onto a campus tour, or just take a day and go at your own pace either on your own or with a friend. Discover which buildings your classes will be in, and time how long it takes to get there from where you are living. (You don’t want to be that person who shows up late to every class in the first week because you got lost.)
- Set up a meal plan
This will save you sooo much money. Whether or not this is the first time you are living away from home, it will be so tempting to pick up microwave meals, grab that burger between classes, and order pizza every evening. An alternative would be planning out which meals you want to have for the week (the healthier the better of course), and then making sure you stick to that plan. It’s not as difficult as it sounds and your bank account will thank you at the end of the year.
- Know your library inside and out
You will be spending a lot of time here throughout your years at university. Get a head start and get comfortable with the library system and the resources it can provide. This will save you loads of time later when you should be focusing on deadlines and not on “How to Reserve E-Books”.
- Get out of your dorm
Your room is the place at least some things are familiar, and I do understand that. However I cannot stress how important it is to bravely leave your dorm room, especially for the first month after you have arrived. There will be tons of events at the start of the year and invitations to join people for various activities. These can be overwhelming, but take a deep breath. Keep your brain in your head, but don’t turn down every invitation. These are great opportunities to meet new people and saying yes to playing that kickball game or going to that coffee shop with that group might be the first step in the start of lifelong friendships.
- Smile extra
You are NOT the only new person who has no idea what they’re doing. Tons of people around you are taking their first step forward on this crazy college adventure too and are 100% more nervous and intimidated than they seem on the outside. Smiles are welcome, and the more the merrier. Be one of the happy faces.