|How to be that successful freshman (without actually looking like a freshman)|
|Written by Brooke Smith|
|Thursday, 08 September 2011 00:00|
There are a lot of things that make it obvious to upperclassmen that you’re a freshman.
The green lanyard with your Tech ID in it is the biggest give away. I’ve seen several freshmen walking around campus with giant folded out maps looking confused. Also, please don’t wear your high school letterman jacket. Now that you are in college, no one really cares what you did in high school.
It’s easy to look like a freshman, but more importantly you don’t want to act like a freshman. College is very different from high school and you will have to learn to adapt. Your sleeping and studying habits will have to change. You’ll have to utilize time management skills.
You’re going to have to establish a budget or that refund check will be gone before you know it. You can’t spend all your time partying and put your classwork on the back burner.
Sleeping and studying habits are crucial to your success in the college atmosphere. Studies show that the average 18-20 year old should sleep about 7-8 hours a night, but it varies from person to person. You should get enough sleep so you can concentrate in class and be able to do your homework.
Studying in college is a lot more time consuming and challenging than it was in high school. You’re going to encounter professors that give just a few tests each semester and don’t give you the opportunity to raise your grades by doing homework. This means you’ll have to study extremely hard for these tests in order to receive a good grade in this class. There are a lot of students who didn’t have to try very hard to do well in high school and they will have a major wake up call during their first semester.
My suggestion is don’t allow yourself to get behind. Try to study each day for the material you covered that day in class and get ahead on homework assignments.
Time management skills are another thing that many students didn’t have to deal with in high school. You won’t be able to survive without them in college. I’ve become so busy that I have to utilize every free second to get things done. Instead of taking a nap during an hour break I’ll do homework or laundry. You’ll also have to use time management when it comes to juggling assignments and tests for multiple classes. For example, if you know you have three tests next week you should work extra hard to get ahead on your homework this week. I highly advise everyone to get a planner so you can keep up with due dates and events.
You’ll also have to learn to prioritize things in order to make sure the most important things are done. Also, don’t be afraid to say no to something you don’t have time to do.
I know what I did when I got my first refund check. It was for $1800 and I had never experienced having that much money in my bank account.
I went crazy and bought everything in sight. I was quickly asking my dad for money and he put me on a $50 a week budget.
It’s a very good idea to calculate a reasonable amount for you to spend on gas and food then put yourself on a weekly budget. It will prepare you for after college and you won’t have to run to mommy and daddy a month after each semester.
There are two sides to the college experience. The social aspect and the academic side are both important, but you have to realize why you’re really in school.
You’re here to learn and graduate with a degree. It’s good to be social and I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing to go to a party and have some fun.
You have to learn to balance the two and not let the partying get out of control. Don’t be that freshman that goes out and gets drunk every night and fails out of college.
There’s nothing cool about that and you will quickly regret it when you are living at home again.
My main point is use common sense when making decisions in college.
You’re not in high school anymore, even though you’ll still have to deal with some aspects of high school like drama. It takes a lot of work and balancing to be successful in college, but you can manage it if you follow these tips.
Don’t be afraid to ask your advisor or another mentor for help if you need some guidance.