College can be an intimidating time for many students as they face new challenges that can include anything from learning how to do laundry to living away from home and family. However, while it's OK to be initially nervous and anxious about college, it should also be some of the most exciting years of your life. Here's some advice from seven freshmen who learned how to survive their first year of college and a little bit of information on how they did it.
1. Be smart with your schedule.
"Be sure to schedule your classes according to what you are able to do. For example, if you're not a morning person (or even if you are), try not to schedule an 8 a.m. Also, try not to space your classes out too much. Having a 9 a.m. and then a 5 p.m. class will most likely tire you out and you'll quickly realize that you don't have time for anything else." – Josh K., University of Georgia
2. Don't be afraid to use your school's transportation.
"Learn how to use buses. Transportation, especially on a big campus, is key and you're not going to want to walk to all of your classes. While buses may seem intimidating at first, it's better to learn and make mistakes early on so the rest of your year can be easy." – Bernard M., University of Florida
3. Be accepting of change (but don't change too much).
"Change yourself but don't change yourself. College is a place full of opportunities. You will experience a multitude of situations where you can grow to become a better person and improve parts of yourself that you feel are weaknesses. Whether this may be improving your social skills or enhancing your physical aesthetics and/or capabilities, you will be faced with a choice to use your time to become a better person or stay the way you are. However, it is crucial to differentiate self-improvement from trying to become someone you are not. You may be tempted to become a person you think people around you want you to be, but it is important that you are able to retain your core values and find your group of friends that will accept you for who you are." –Johnny L., University of Georgia
4. Stick with an easy job.
"If you're broke and you plan on working, try to apply early and aim for an easy job (such as a library job). The last thing you want to do is work for food service. Library jobs are ideal because you practically get paid to do your own homework." –Madeline P., University of Florida
5. Do what you want to do.
"Find what makes you happy. Don't do things you don't want to do and don't feel peer pressured into doing things that you don't feel are right. Stay true to yourself in everything that you do." – Ellison P., University of Georgia
6. Stock up on food in your dorm.
"Buy a lot of ramen and snacks. Trust me, you'll quickly realize that the late night cravings are real, especially when you have a huge test and you're stressing out." – Cindy L., University of Virginia
7. Always be prepared.
"Be prepared for every kind of weather. For example, be sure to have an umbrella for all those super rainy days when professors don't decide to cancel classes. Also, be sure to have at least one really nice winter coat for when you have to brace the deadly cold." – Katie K., University of Georgia
With these tips, hopefully everyone will have a successful first year of college! Here's to new beginnings and new challenges.
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