When you're an incoming freshman about to start attending the university of your dreams, college is pretty much anything and everything you think about. What will the classes be like? Is the food going to be good? How many clubs should I participate in? These are all questions that I had a few months ago and although some were answered before the semester began, many of them remained mysteries.
The uncertainty of everything definitely made my first few weeks very memorable, but nevertheless, I think some things could have been better. Not to worry though! For all the incoming freshman who are soon going to start the best four years of their lives, here are 15 things I wish I knew before starting college.
1. You don't need to bring everything from home
I understand that bringing 20 pairs of shoes, 10 different Bath & Body Works sprays, and 30 led pencils may seem necessary. However, when it comes to unpacking all your boxes and organizing things, you'll be glad you brought less!
2. Leave your door open & hang out in the lounge
It's such an easy way to make friends and also a great way to check out how everyone else decorated their room! Just make sure nobody steals anything!
3. GET INVOLVED!!!!!!
Don't join a bunch of clubs and then only go to a few meetings! Be active and make your resume stand out. You'll also meet new people and never be bored!
4. Scared of the Freshman 15? Don't be!
You're either going to lose weight or gain weight, so don't stress. Just make sure you at least eat something, because starving yourself won't make anything easier.
5. Sleep is more important than you think
You're definitely going to be staying up more than you did in high school, so make sure you fit naps into your schedule.
6. Hate a class? Drop it!
Most schools let you drop classes without it showing on your transcript for the first two weeks, so definitely take advantage of that. You won't like every class and professor, which is okay.
7. Finding true friends takes time
Don't worry if you feel like you haven't found your friend group yet. Mingle with everyone anyway and who knows, maybe those people will become your best friends!
8. Keep track of your money
Make sure you don't run out of meal swipes before the semester ends, and definitely keep receipts after buying things! You'll be surprised at how much money you spend on textbooks, college apparel, grocery shopping, fast food, etc.
9. Find one activity to destress and stick to it
Whether you decide to watch Netflix, do Zumba, or go to Starbucks, definitely make sure you do something fun in between classes and homework. Don't let stress get to you!!
10. Nobody really cares what you look like - you do you!
Yes, there will be days when you get 3 hours of sleep and have an anatomy test at 8 AM. No, you don't need to change out of sweats & put on makeup.
11. DON'T skip class!
Mental health days are important, but don't skip class just because you don't feel like going. If you go to a small or medium-sized college, I'm 99 percent sure that attendance will count. Plus, think about how much money you'll be wasting by skipping a few days. Seriously, do the math. It's scary.
12. Keep track of all your grades!
Sometimes professors will forget to update grades or mark things correctly, so make sure you keep checking. Also, keep in mind that some professors only assign 2 - 3 tests, so failing one could result in you failing the class.
13. Taking a bunch of classes right after each other isn't the best idea
It's good to get all your classes out of the way in a few days, but you're going to be exhausted from taking so many notes and starving yourself. That's a bad combination, trust me.
14. How important ratemyprofessor.com is
Seriously, use this website every semester!!!! I cannot even begin to tell you how many bad classes I've gotten out of just by reading other students' reviews. It'll save your GPA, I promise!
15. Speak up for yourself - you're on your own now!
This is the most important lesson of all! If you don't like people being loud when you're studying, friends eating all your food, your roommate using things without asking, etc., YOU need to do something about it. Nobody else will care if you don't!