There are over-dramatized and over-glamorized views of college that influenced the way I envisioned my college experience to go. Here are the top seven.
1. Buying textbooks.
You don't need to buy the textbook just because the syllabus says you do. Make sure to wait out a few classes and see if you really need it or if you can find a free online version before draining your bank account. Also, there is almost no difference between most textbook editions so if your professor requires a fifth edition textbook that's $100 but you find a second edition for $45, do your research and see if there's any difference! Sometimes, the content is the exact same but the pages are a bit off.
And if you are gonna be buying textbooks, consult former students or used book websites FIRST! Don't go to the campus bookstore, they will overcharge you. Also, sell your textbooks to the students taking the class the next semester after your done with the class.
2. Study, sleep, party. Pick two.
It IS possible to study, sleep, AND party. You don't have to pick two out of three! You just have to prioritize accordingly and don't lose control. If you manage your time wisely, there is time for all three whether you're an English major or an engineering major.
3. If you don't drink or smoke, you're lame.
You don't have to do anything. Truth is, everyone is respectful of the lifestyle you chose to lead. It's your life. Though you will encounter people who drink/smoke, you will also encounter people who abstain from it.
4. Looking your best everyday.
I used to think that I had to put effort into the way I look every single day to keep up with everyone else. College kids will cram in as much sleep as they can get so if you don't look like you just rolled out of bed five minutes ago, you're in the minority.
5. People are more mature.
Ehhhh...I mean, we're not that far off from high schoolers. There is definitely a fair amount of immature people and that's completely fine. We're growing, not grown.
6. Late work.
Remember when your teachers in high school told you that college professors don't care about you and you need to turn your work in on time no matter what? Yeah, well, turns out that most professors are human beings who understand that life gets in the way sometimes and are completely fine with giving you an extension after you send them a nice, professional email.
7. You're on your own now.
Yeah right. I should've known parents weren't just going to go away once I started dorm-ing. There are times when I get homesick or just need to hear their voices so I'll call home. Or I'll be too much of a baby and need my mom to set up a doctor's appointment. Dorming at college definitely does not mean you'll stop leaning on your parents.