As a first generation college student, I had SO many questions about college life.
What is it really like? How hard is it to make friends? Is it fun? Is it better than high school? An abundance of questions that could I really only find the answers to through experience.
Here is a compilation of things I wish people told me about my freshman year of college, but didn't.
1. Don't blow all of your money on things you don't really need.
College is expensive, so make sure you learn how to spend your money wisely. Also, consider getting a job for holiday breaks and the summer to save up so you aren't a broke college kid when you're on campus. You WILL spend an obnoxious amount of money on coffee and food whether you like it or not.
2. Parties don't get you degrees, so choose wisely.
Choosing whether or not to party is a personal issue, but it can definitely be detrimental to your GPA. Your school work should always come before anything else.
3. Professors actually WANT to see you succeed.
Professors are NOT scary monsters who want to fail you. If you're struggling in their class, drop by their office during office hours and ask them questions- those office hours exist for a reason! They genuinely do care about your success and well being.
4. Unlike high school, you can approach pretty much anyone and have a decent conversation.
As a Freshman, making new friends can be intimidating, but I promise it'll happen eventually. Don't be afraid to walk up to someone you don't know and start a conversation with them. Who knows? They may turn out to be one of your best friends.
5. The first friends you make may not turn out to be your best friends- and that's OK.
You may not ever speak to them again after the first week, and that's OK too. Even though this is probably going to happen to you, don't let it discourage you from trying to make as many friends as possible. The real ones WILL stick around.
6. You'll be walking more than you ever had to before.
7. Keep a planner.
Your planner will literally become your life. You'll have entirely too many things to keep track of in your head- write them down!
8. "Due tomorrow" does NOT mean to do it tomorrow.
9. Make your dorm room feel like home.
You're going to be spending A LOT of time in your dorm room, so make it feel like home. Decorate. Be those roommates who get dorm ideas off of Pinterest. Your dorm room is a blank canvas to express yourself, make it stand out!
10. Naps are essential.
If you're not the type of person who takes naps on a regular basis, you're definitely going to become one. A nap, whether it's a quick 10 minute power nap or a 2 hour nap, will ALWAYS make you feel better. Just don't use a nap as an excuse to skip your work, use it as a reward for when you get all of your work done.
11. Your hometown will no longer feel like your only home.
When you do go home, you're going to feel out of place- that's normal. Your hometown is no longer your only home. It's perfectly okay to miss campus while you're home, after all, it is where your life and friends are.
12. College is NOT high school.
Don't think your high school study habits will cut it in college. The workload is insane compared to what you're used to. Don't be afraid to turn down offers to go out because you have to study or do homework- your friends will understand and your GPA will thank you.
13. Nobody cares how you look or what you wear.
You could literally wear your pajamas to class - nobody cares, especially if you have an 8am class. There are people in my 8am class who I don't even recognize when I see them around campus at 4pm on a weekend. Makeup and dressing up are optional, don't feel pressured to do either.