14 Pieces of Advice For Incoming College Freshmen
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14 Pieces of Advice For Incoming College Freshmen

Some college tips from a college senior to a college freshmen

14 Pieces of Advice For Incoming College Freshmen
Danielle Slate

1. Stay organized.

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Label your notebooks and binders. Keep your notes for different classes separate so that you don't show up at one class with notes for another. A planner is one of the best investments you will make in your college career. Get into the habit of writing down your assignments and anything else you need to take care of with due dates. You will find that keeping track of your assignments (there will be tons of them) and when they are due, will make a world of a difference. Keep your desk organized, and throw things away when they are no longer of value to you. A clean working environment will help you focus once you sit down to do work.

2. Get involved

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You will meet so many new people through different clubs and organizations across your campus. College campuses have a club for just about anything you can imagine. Sign up for all the clubs that interest you and attend the first few meetings to see which ones you think you would like to become an active member of. Not only will you make new friends by getting involved with different groups on campus, but adding your involvement in these clubs to your resume will also be beneficial to you!

3. Don't procrastinate

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I cannot stress this one enough. Try your very hardest not to wait until the last possible minute to study, begin large projects, or study for quizzes and exams. Not only will the quality of your work be improved if you give yourself more time to complete it, but you will also significantly reduce the amount of stress you would put onto yourself by crunching a week's worth of work into one night.

4. Get into the habit of checking your email frequently

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For many people, college is the first time that you are expected to communicate with your professor and classmates by email. It is really important to check your email frequently in college because any important updates or cancellations are relayed by email.

5. Don't be afraid to reach out to your professor for help

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To back up my previous point about the importance of checking your email, it should also be mentioned that in college you are expected to reach out to your professor on your own in the event that you have a question or do not understand the material. It is expected that you come to class prepared, and if that means you need to email your professor the night before an assignment is due with a quick question, than that is what you need to do. Just be careful about texting or emailing professors late at night or on the weekends. Some do not mind when you reach out to them, while others do. Check with your syllabus or ask your professor which mode of communication they prefer, and what time of day is the best to reach them.

6. Take advantage of your professor's office hours

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The majority of college professors have what is referred to as "office hours." This time frame is typically used as a time that professors are available in their office to assist students when they need extra help with an assignment, or when they are just not understanding the material. Office hours are a great tool and I highly recommend that you take advantage of them when you need them. If you plan on attending your professor's office hours, it is a good idea to email them ahead of time and inform them that you will be coming, so that they are prepared for your arrival and have the necessary time to help you set aside. Do not be afraid to seek out some help. Your professors want to see you succeed just much as you do!

7. Eat right, exercise, and get enough sleep

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During college, you will have periods of time when you are stressed. Unfortunately, stress is inevitable throughout college, and there is not much that we can do to avoid its wrath. We can however, take care of our bodies during these flare ups. Eating right and hitting the gym can significantly reduce stress and the effects it has on the human body. Eating healthier and taking time out of your schedule to go for a run or do yoga can help control your stress levels immensely. Sleep deprivation is also very real. Make getting to bed on time a priority as soon as possible. Trust me, it will make a huge difference. Getting a good night’s sleep in college can be really tricky, especially if you are not used to living with added noise and people. Practicing self-care is so important!

8. Take time for the things you enjoy most

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It is highly likely that you will find yourself with a jammed packed schedule sometimes during college. It is easy to get overwhelmed and fill up your schedule with jobs, classes, study time, practice, games, etc. and leave little time to do things like hang out with friends, get your nails done, or whatever it is that you do for yourself that makes you happy. It is so important to set aside enough time so that you can still find enjoyment in doing things for yourself. This might mean that you need to get up a little earlier on a Saturday morning to get your homework done so that you can go to the movies at night with your friends. Whatever the sacrifice, it will probably be worth it for just a little you time.

9. Call your mom and dad

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Your parents will miss you a lot when you go to college. Make your absence a little easier on them by calling them every chance that you get. Let them know what you have been up to and how you have been doing. Trust me, it is not lame and you will be glad you did.

10. Do not wait until the last minute to get help

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If you find yourself falling behind in a class, do not wait until you are buried in assignments or the night before an exam to begin seeking help. Most colleges and universities will have tutoring centers where you can go get extra help. Even if you are understanding the material, attending a tutoring session is a wonderful way to learn easy ways to remember exam material that have helped previous students.

11. Refresh on what you learned in lecture as soon as possible

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If you are able to, I would highly recommend reviewing what you learned during a lecture later that night or the next day. I found recording lectures on my phone and listening to them later on to be incredibly helpful! Writing and rewriting your notes is also a great way to drill things into your brain. It is possible that you will only have lecture on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. If this is the case, it is important to freshen up on what you learned on the off days, so that when you show up for class next, you remember the material and are not starting off behind. You will be surprised at how much you can forget in just a day’s time!

12. It is not a popularity contest

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College is different from high school in the sense that people are growing up, and for the most part, they are all there to get an education and make a living, not to be the coolest girl on campus. However, not everyone gets out of the “middle school drama” phase. If you find yourself surrounded by that sort of negative energy, the lovely part about college is that there are numerous other people for which you can chose to associate yourself with. College is hard enough with being away from home and the family, friends, and familiarity that comes along with it. The very least you can do for yourself once you get to college is to make quality friends who you can lean on when things get hard.

12. Be appreciative of your opportunity to attend college in the first place

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You should be very aware by now of how expensive it is to receive a secondary education. Going to college is not a right, it is a privilege that many people do not get the opportunity to experience. With that being said, actually use the textbooks that you or your parents have spent a near fortune on, take excellent care of your things so that you can still use them the following year, and maybe even the year after, and for goodness sake, go to class. You will see a lot of people skipping class, and it might not seem like a big deal, but try your very hardest not to follow suit. Missing class is a great way to fall behind fast!

13. Make or join a study group

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Studying in a group has been shown to have great benefits on students and their academic performance. However, studying in a group is not ideal for everyone. For some people, studying in a group can be a huge distraction, and for others, it is a good way to be held accountable and use their time wisely. Study groups are an excellent way to split up the work among a number of people instead of holding yourself responsible for it all. Not only that, but study groups also provide a wonderful platform for you to share study tips and information with one another. I cannot stress enough how many times someone in my study group has mentioned something right before an exam that I had not thought of, that ended up being on the exam. Putting your heads together and sharing the workload can be exceedingly constructive!

14. Have fun!

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As someone who is about to kick start their senior year of college in just seven short days, I cannot stress enough how important it is to simply enjoy your time in college, because just like high school, it will fly by! My mother can attest to the fact that it feels like just yesterday she was dropping me off for my freshman year of college. Before you know it, you will be graduating, entering the real world, and expected to find a job, pay bills, and be responsible. Use your time in college to build connections, take all the opportunities you can, and enjoy what life has to offer. With that being said, take that class you were curious about that has nothing to do with your major, go out for a night with friends on a Saturday night instead of locking yourself in your room to study, and spend the money to go on weekend trips with your friends! Work hard and enjoy what college has to offer to you!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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