80 Things I Learned In My First Year
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80 Things I Learned In My First Year

College is very different than high school.

80 Things I Learned In My First Year

Last August, I began writing for the Odyssey online. At the time, I was 17 and working at Subway. I had not yet had stepped foot on a college campus. From that moment I felt it was my duty to share my freshman year and things that I have learned with you, my readers (hi mom). Now that my freshman year is dwindling down it is the time for the ultimate list of things that differ between high school and college.

  1. There are so many people on campus.
  2. It's exhausting carrying around a room and mailbox key!
  3. Bedtime and/or meal time happens whenever YOU want.
  4. Your sleep patterns are really bad.
  5. Leisure time or lack of.
  6. STUDYING, don’t get me started. (See cover photo)
  7. You go through phases of missing everything at home and not missing anything at all.
  8. Your teachers will not give you individual grades on assignments on blackboard, you get two grades, midterms, and finals, good luck.
  9. Making friends is easy.
  10. If you do not know how to do something, there is someone in your building or friend group who does.
  11. Everyone has their own amount of intelligence, we all carry weird information.
  12. Group projects do not get any easier.
  13. Professors are more laid back than you would think.
  14. Professors do give extra credit sometimes, take advantage of it.
  15. There will always be a professor you are not a huge fan of, but at least you only have them for one semester.
  16. You have a routine that is completely different from the one you had in high school.
  17. General education requirements are tiring and can easily bring your GPA down.
  18. Your GPA determines a lot for you, there are certain clubs, organizations, and jobs that require you to have above a 2.5.
  19. You need to be organized.
  21. Do not party every weekend, remember that you are here to learn.
  22. Decision making is a big thing. You are not living with Mom and Dad anymore, therefore they cannot lead you to the correct decision.
  23. Remember your worth. You made it this far, right? Be proud of yourself and remember even on the bad days you belong.
  24. Any type of club will take up a lot of time.
  25. The people make the club, if you do not like the people within the club then leave.
  26. Mom and/or Dad will always be only a call away.
  27. Stuff that happened in high school does not matter anymore.
  28. You are a different person than who you were when you were in high school.
  29. Keep in touch with high school friends, but it is not a good idea to be constantly going home.
  30. Home sickness will happen, you just have to stay where you are and power through it.
  31. You are treated as an adult but still can be told you are not old enough to make your own decisions.
  32. You need a good morning playlist to turn on as soon as your alarm goes off.
  33. It is okay to sleep in once or twice in the semester.
  34. Naps are okay, but it could lead to being lazier if you sleep longer than 30 minutes.
  35. Go to class, even if attendance is not mandatory.
  36. If you are struggling in class get a tutor or go to your teacher’s office hours.
  37. Always introduce yourself to at least one other person in the class so you can have someone to study with.
  38. If you are not sure what a teacher is asking for in a certain assignment, just ask.
  39. Study for quizzes, every grade matters no matter how big or small.
  40. This is obvious but do your homework.
  41. If you have a question and you don’t want to ask it in class you could always email your Professor.
  42. Go to sports/social events with your friends.
  43. Try to find activities to do in a different atmosphere than your residence hall so you don’t feel imprisoned.
  44. Open your shades in the morning to bring in sunlight, sunlight boosts good hormones in your body.
  45. Dependent on what college you go to, winter can be brutal, just remember it will not be here forever.
  46. Don’t think about how much the atmosphere is rusting your car, just don’t.
  47. Don’t scrape ice off the paint of your car, your paint could come off too.
  48. Freezing rain does not come off your car easily, especially when it’s still cold outside.
  49. Listen to your school’s radio station.
  50. If you don’t like what you hear join the radio station and make your own show.
  51. It is normal for people to get cabin fever.
  52. Classes are rarely canceled because of snow.
  53. Your mental health is important, if you are having issues with it, see a counselor.
  54. Always lock your door before leaving your room.
  55. Bring things you do not need/use home during spring break, it will make a little less work for you to move out.
  56. Winter break feels too long to be real.
  57. Spring semester flies by.
  58. You will get sick of dining hall food.
  59. Freshman 15 is real, but that is okay, it happens to everyone.
  60. Do not compare yourself and your accomplishments to others, in the long run this will make your self-esteem remain where it was.
  61. If you really do not like it after one year, consider transferring.
  62. Do not compare other majors to your own, no major is “easy”, diplomas are not just handed out.
  63. It is easy to make a personal connection with professors, no matter how big the class is.
  64. College brings out both the extrovert and introvert in everyone.
  65. You will meet a lot of different people from a lot of different places.
  66. Always give someone a chance, brush away the stigmas you have towards certain types of people.
  67. No one wants to talk about politics in the dining hall.
  68. You will not start and end the year with the same friends.
  69. Cutting people out of your life for the better is not something to be ashamed of.
  70. Always be proud of yourself and the work you hand in.
  71. Do something you’re passionate about, even if in the long run it won’t make you much money.
  72. Go to somewhere other than your room to study, it’s easier to concentrate. (Unless you're in the library and cannot physically study anymore for the day, see cover photo)
  73. Begin studying a week in advance for finals when going over everything from the year… trust me it is worth it.
  74. Remember that C’s get degrees.
  75. But if your goal is higher than a C (mine always are) there is no issue with that.
  76. A good night of sleep before a test gives you more of a train of thought.
  77. 8 AM classes and finals stink, but you have no other choice, at least you get it over.
  78. The last week of the semester runs by so slow.
  79. When the sun comes out your last thought is about studying, remember that you have the whole summer to be outside.
  80. Remember that no matter how good or bad you do on your finals your family is still proud of you, college is hard and not for everyone.
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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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