The excitement of going to college can crash and burn rather quickly a few days into the actual school year. Here are some tips to help you deal with that first year away from home at college. Adjusting to campus life doesn’t have to be difficult if you have an idea what to anticipate.
1. Expect to get homesick – When high school graduation comes, it seems that every 18-year old believes they are grown and ready to face the world. The reality is that after leaving home, there is always some sadness. This is perfectly natural, but be prepared to cope.
2. Make new friends – Sure it is great to keep your existing friends from back home, but now that you are in a new place, you need to make new friends you will see on a regular basis. Other freshmen are looking to make friends, too, and campus life is easier when you build relationships and can rely on each other.
3. Orientations are helpful – Orientations are designed for a reason, and that is to help new students acclimate successfully to campus life. Some are mandatory, some are optional, but either way you stand to learn something that will help you in your adjustment to college life.
4. Don’t miss class – Remember that attending class is very important. There are many other young adults who would love to be in your shoes but don’t have the opportunity or funds to attend college. Secondary education is a prized opportunity, so get out of bed on time and attend all classes.
5. Don’t expect to be treated like a high school student – College professors and teachers are not going to remind you of tests and homework the way your high school teachers spoiled you. You are the responsible party and must keep up with your studies if you want to “make the grade.”
6. Eat right – Mom isn’t there to stand over you and tell you to eat your fruit and vegetables. Proper nutrition is essential for a well functioning mind. Avoid a daily diet of sugar and fast food. The campus cafeteria typically serves well balanced options. Snack on fruits, vegetables, and drink plenty of water daily.
7. No one will tell you when to study – Mom and dad won’t be around to tell you to turn off the television, study for a test, or when you should get in bed. You are an adult now and need to make grown-up decisions. It is okay to have fun and participate in quality activities other than just studying, but you are there to get an education.
8. Learn patience and giving – Many freshmen have never had to share a room with another individual, so it can be an awakening when a roommate doesn’t share the same interests. You cannot always do exactly what you want in the confines of your college dorm room. It is a shared space and each student should respect the other’s rights.
9. Don’t be shy about asking for help – College is not going to be easy, especially in certain subjects. There are always people who can help with tutoring or as study partners if you ask. Take every advantage to get the best education you can.
To keep the excitement you have for going away for college, prepare in advance for the best ways to adjust to life on campus. Make your college experience one that you will remember fondly in the years to come.