1. Leaving friends who are going to other schools is not easy. While it’s important to stay in touch with your high school friends, be open minded to getting to know your college peers.
3. Don’t become the smelly kid just because mom isn’t around to make you shower. Invest in a pair of rubber flip-flops, just in case the dorm showers aren’t in tip-top shape.
4. Leaving home is hard for you but it might be even harder for your parents to have you gone. Make sure you call at least a couple times a week. Tell mom and dad the highs and lows of your week. They want to be involved and help you as much as you can. You have a guidance counselor on campus, but nothing beats mom and dad’s advice.
5. You don’t have to know what you want to major in right away. That’s what freshman year is for. Take the classes you want to take; you might be surprised by what interests you. (If you decide to change your major later on, that’s okay too.)
6. Use your resources starting from day 1! I cannot stress this enough! You have access to guidance counselors, professors, career advisors, and other students. You will only feel stuck if you don’t ask for help. College is a hefty transition to make on your own. Think about why you’re there in the first place and work with a mentor to create a plan for success.
7. Save money where you can. Rent your textbooks, there are several websites that allow you to rent books for the entire quarter or semester. If you can’t rent your textbooks, the older version of a textbook might be cheaper with a few minor differences.
8. It’s common for students to get a part-time job while in college. Again, use your resources. There are plenty of jobs for students on campus. Most importantly of all, make sure you choose a job that is flexible with your class schedule. School comes first.
9. Don’t be fooled by the fact that you might only have a midterm and final in your classes. While two tests for the whole quarter might seem like a reason to celebrate, those tests will be worth the majority of your grade and you will study for them all quarter long. Join a study group or find a study partner who will help you stay on top of class material.
10. Mom and dad might not be there to make you go to class, but sleeping in instead will substantially hurt your grades! GO! Always go unless you have an exceptionally good excuse. If you miss class, be sure to get notes from a classmate right away to avoid falling behind. You never know which lectures the professor will pull important test questions from.
11. Develop relationships with your professors. When it comes time to ask for letters of recommendation, you will be glad you went in for office hours more than once or twice.
12. Remember that college costs a lot of money and although you may not realize it, you’re very lucky that you get to attend. The friends you make in college will serve as your support system. You will get through the treacherous finals weeks and celebrate high test scores together. Have fun, work hard and make the most of your experience.
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