August 20, 2013

Dear incoming college freshmen,


There will be no lack of posts and articles like this one.  You've probably read most them; written by college survivors and veterans addressing you, the newest recruits, and relinquishing kernels (colonels?) of truth.  And while I can share some gathered wisdom, I will preface it with this:  You will probably have a different experience than me.

The most exciting thing about college is its possibilities. There is no magic formula I can give to guarantee academic or social success.  You will have to discover it for yourself!

Here are just some of the things I've learned:

  • Shower flip flops are not necessary.  I'm serious.  I survived a whole year without any feet fungus. 
  • Be nice to everybody and keep an open mind.  There have been several people that I initially said I would never talk to for whatever reason.  And guess what?  They ended up being some of my closest friends. 
  • Don't always contact to meet someone for a meal.  Okay, this might not work for those folks at huge universities, but at my small campus, I never liked feeling tied down.  Unless I'm making a point to spend time with someone I haven't seen otherwise, I try to sit with different people. 
  • Sleep.  Need I elaborate?  Health comes first--don't forget that.  
  • Seek out career services.  Chances are you can schedule an appointment to meet with a counselor to discuss major/job/life plans or to finally write a proper resume.  This will especially bode you well come summer.  I had an advantage because I also worked there, but it is open to all and you should use it.
  • Always consult the syllabus.  Save yourself the trouble of asking people about readings, topic of lectures, etc. Instead, be the person who can inform others.
  • Be mature.  This isn't high school.
  • Don't bring a computer to class.  Now, I never did.  But when I would see the occasional person on Facebook, I'd have to roll my eyes.  Why pay so much not to pay attention?
  • Get off campus.  Even if you live in a college town, explore the other local eateries, parks, etc.
  • Avoid studying in bed.  You won't learn much this way.
  • Avoid studying in your room.  I don't think you'll learn much this way either.
  • Save your money.  College is a good time to curb your coffee habit or generally spend less on potentially non-essential items.
For those who have lived through it, what else would you add?

I guess my last token of advice would be to have a positive attitude.


1 comment:


    Definitely sleep. And yeah, man, I actually really do not enjoy having to round up people to go eat with and prefer going solo when I can.