Ah Spring, a time of great change in both the weather and the student body. Students come out of their deep library hibernation and once again grace campus with their presence. The changing of the seasons is only a prelude of what is to come for the seniors on campus. As the days become longer, the seniors time on campus grows shorter. However, if you are a senior, like me, there is no need to be sad. Some of the best times of our lives have occurred over the last four years, and those experiences shaped us into who we are today. Now, as I am a senior, I believe it is fitting that I pass on some tips for the incoming freshman. These tips will hopefully help you to create the best experience out of your time in college.
Tip 1: Don’t run home to Mom and Dad whenever something goes wrong
For some people college is the first time they are away from home. It can be very overwhelming at times, but that does not mean it is time to run home. College is a time for you to see what you are really made of. It is also a time for you to begin to find out who you really are as a person, and that is something that nobody else can do for you. So, when you are faced with times of adversity it is important to remain calm and handle the situation. I am not saying do not ask your parents for advice, but you should not need to go home every time you have to step outside your comfort zone.
Tip 2: Join a club or organization as a Freshman
College may be a lot of work, but that does not mean there is no time for play. The first few weeks of my freshman year I spent a lot of time in my room bored with nothing to do. I would get back from class, watch Seinfeld, and take a nap. It was not until I branched out and joined the schools Rugby team that I felt like I was feeling the real college experience. It was great to be part of a team and not be wasting my time at home. Not only that, but it helped me form some of my greatest friendships while in college. Colleges have a wide variety of clubs and organizations, there is something for everyone! So I encourage you all to join some clubs and organizations to make your experience more exciting.
Tip 3: Live a little
Going away to College is one of the most exciting times in your life, and you should treat it that way. Go out of your comfort zone and live a little. Stay out past 10, go out in the town, hangout with your friends all night, and HAVE FUN! My first year at West Chester I did not have nearly as fun as I could have had. I spent most of my time in my room thinking that fun would just come find me. Sadly, that was not the case. However, I eventually broke out of my shell of doing nothing and tried things that I had never tried before. Things like going to an on-campus event and walking around town with friends are things I enjoyed. I also played video games instead of doing homework and would often come home at 3am, you know, stuff my mom would yell at me for. So I suggest making use of the limited time you have and get out there and live.
Tip 4: Stay on top of school work!!!!!!
I really wish I could add more exclamation points to the title to emphasize how important this is, but my editor wouldn’t like that. So let me just tell you that while having fun a living life is important it is even more important to stay on top of school. I can not tell you how many friends I have that are regretting how little they cared about school their first year. They are kicking themselves in the butts because they went out too much and didn’t pay attention to their work. So take my advice, and theirs, and stay on top of school work. I know it may seem difficult at first to balance everything as a Freshman, but it is possible. It is all about time management. You can still go out and have fun, but at the end of the day you are here to learn. (and you pay a looooot of money to do it)So do yourself a favor and get your work done.