Going from high school to college is a giant transition for many people. You have to become a lot more independent by doing things such as getting yourself to class, monitoring your diet, and dealing with laundry. Even though the wave of new responsibilities can be a bit overwhelming, the new-found freedom feels great. You can make new friends and decide where and how you wish to spend your time. I’ve only been a college student for two weeks, but I still feel as though I have learned a few things already.

1. Go outside your comfort zone

College may be scary, but you can make it better by going outside of your comfort zone. Make friends with a random stranger, join a club, or attend a sporting event. It’s perfectly fine to do things alone as well. If you’re constantly in the same group of people, you may have trouble meeting people outside of your small group.

2. Steal food from the dining hall.

Many dining halls use meal swipes and then offer food buffet-style. Bring baggies or containers and pack up extra food. I have brought plastic bags to stash away fruits and veggies so that I can snack on them later.

3. The library is amazing.

Going to the library not only offers peace, but it is a relaxed space that offers you endless resources. I notice that I am able to get work done much easier when I’m in the library due to a lack of distractions and interruptions.

4. Make friends in your classes.

This will help you when it’s ten o’clock at night and you want to double-check that you did all of the right work for your class the next day. Create a group chat with a bunch of students in your class and form study groups; you’ll be able to collaborate and learn the subject a lot better.

5. Use what is given to you.

College is very expensive, so make sure you get your money’s worth. Most campuses offer free gym memberships, book rentals, giveaways, sporting events, etc. In addition to offers such as these, you also most likely have academic services available for free. Some of these services may be career development, writing centers, and various other opportunities. Take advantage of these free/inexpensive opportunities while you can!

Make sure that you graduate knowing that you did more than just going to classes and partying. It’s important to make the most of these four years because after this you’re on your own. Even though I have only been here for two weeks, I realize that college offers endless opportunities. The next four years are going to be filled with great moments that will lead me towards a successful future.