Every college student wants their experience to be memorable, but in the right way. High school students envision their college years will be full of fun, new social encounters, new experiences, and fond memories. However, there are also many problems college students face throughout their years there, and how they deal with them is essential in their academic, emotional, physical, and social success.
Here are some common problems and some possible solutions for working through them.
Finances – One of the major challenges college students face is that of finances. Many students drop out prior to graduation because they cannot afford the cost. Some have help from parents, others have financial aid, but still with the rising cost of tuition, textbooks, room and board, gasoline, clothing, and other necessities, the challenge is often a difficult one to overcome.
Planning is an essential part of handling the expense of college. Sound money management skills are required, and being creative and responsible when it comes to saving money is essential. Buying used textbooks, finding alternate means of transportation (bicycle, walking, and carpooling), eating out less, and doing without some luxuries can mean the difference is maneuvering your way through school free of debt or having to drop out.
Studies – College usually requires more studying than high school along with more assignments. It is easy to become quickly overwhelmed and fall behind. For those trying to attend school and work part or full time, the study problem is often a great hurdle to overcome.
Don’t overdo it, especially in your first semesters at school. It is best to pace yourself and adjust to campus and academic life at college. Carefully consider the number of credit hours you are undertaking as well as their level of difficulty. It might be a good idea to juggle classes so your schedule is not loaded with all the hardest subjects in a single semester. Your advisor can be a valuable resource in helping guide you in your choice of subjects.
Selecting a Major – Many high school and beginning college students stress early on over choosing a major. They become overly concerned with their future professional career and the salary possibilities various jobs offer.
You can begin a broad area of study, such as business, and then narrow the possibilities down after you’ve got some credit hours on your transcript. Focus on areas of study that you actually have an interest in rather than making it all about the money. Again, your advisor is a resource who can help you make these types of decisions.
These are just a few of the challenges college students face, and if you are dealing with issues of some type you can rest assured you are not alone. Don’t struggle in trying to handle the stresses on your own. Discuss your concerns with family, friends, and your advisor; utilize campus resources such as counselors and college staff. Many times these connections have advice and experience that may well offer the solution to your problems.
Problem solving is all a part of maturity and advancing into adulthood; it is what shapes you into the person you are capable of being; it’s a part of life.