Come August, I'll be entering my second year at college. As such, I've gotten plenty of questions from nervous soon-to-be freshmen searching for advice. Well, here's what I got for ya!
1. Make "Convenience" Friends
People crap on "convenience" friends like no tomorrow, but they'll end up saving your butt. Friends that live in your dorm will help remind you of dorm activities. Friends in your class will come in clutch if you miss a day or two and catch you up. Friends in clubs will often check up on you and keep you updated on happenings. Even if y'all don't talk outside of class, club, or dorm, that doesn't mean they're not good to keep around.
2. Get Involved On Campus
I cannot say this enough. Getting involved on campus will help introduce you to new people and help keep you on track. Join something that you're passionate about. Most schools have a "new student days" where they showcase their clubs. This is a good time to check out what you want to get involved in. Sign up for their email lists so you know what's going on around campus -- it'll save your life sometimes.
3. Designate "Your" Building
This one took me a while to learn. If you find a building (usually one inside your major) that you're comfortable in, stay there often. You'll meet the upperclassmen who can help you on your homework and struggle with the other people in your major. You also become more acquainted with the professors, which helps a bunch.
4. Take LAP Classes
When you take classes outside of your major, you learn about an entirely different world. Especially if you are undecided, taking an LAP(liberal arts program) class will not only fulfill your degree requirements, but hopefully help you find where you want to be for the rest of your life. It'll also help narrow down what you don't want to do, and you'll gain an understanding and respect for the people in that major.
5. Declutter As Often As Possible
College is busy and goes by quick. To keep your life neat, declutter as often as possible. Even if it's only once every few months, or before breaks, decluttering will save your sanity. Get rid of those trinkets you don't need -- and leave plenty at home -- and throw away your trash in the dumpster. I'm not saying you need to deep clean your room every day; I'm saying that getting rid of clutter will save your sanity in the long run.
6. Don't Buy The Textbook
Even if it is on the required list, most professors don't use the textbook listed. Wait until a week into class before hitting up amazon. Also, if it's not something you're looking to pursue, rent the textbook from Chegg (it sounds like I'm selling out but hear me out). And also compare prices!!!! That's massively important. People are going to try to scam you, so read the descriptions!
7. Act Broke; Stay Rich
Listen, you never know when disaster will strike. First week into college, and this girl in my class suddenly had a flat tire. If you act like you have no money -- even if you have enough to splurge often -- then you will end up having a nice savings fund for emergency. And, if you are broke, this is a good way to start saving money. "Treat yo self" is a good motto, but only if it's in your best interests.
8. Be A Teachers Pet
I'm not saying be a complete and total suck up and annoy the other students. What I am saying is positive relationships with your professors is endlessly beneficial. Show up an extra five minutes early. Ask if they need help. Ask for help before it gets dire. Sit in the front row. Just show that you're interested and engaged. It goes a long way.
9. Intern, Intern, Intern!
One huge piece of advice I got from my senior, Mason, was to apply for as many internships within your field as possible. You're going to get denied an incredible amount of times, but just keep trying! The absolute worst thing they can say is no. So, start searching now if you can!
Dream big, first years! You're going to do great.