My freshman year of college was a rollercoaster ride, and it was one of the best school years I've ever had. I made amazing friends, I changed my major, I ventured around Philadelphia, and I learned so many things that I never knew before and could've used one year ago, before entering college. From life lessons to tips about college struggles, here are 15 lessons that I learned in my freshman year of college that I wish I knew one year ago.
1. It's okay to not know what you want to do with your life yet.Giphy
You're probably going to change your major a lot, and that's completely okay. You don't have to know what you want to do with your life in your freshman year, or in any year of college.
2. Not everyone is going to be your friend.
In the beginning, you're going to meet a lot of new people, but not all of them will be your friend, and that's completely normal. Don't get too stressed out if you don't make friends right away either -- the right people will come at the right time. You will find your people!!!
3. The dining hall food isn't as good as it seems.
If you have the opportunity to eat something that's not from the dining hall, take it. Go to a food truck or go to a little restaurant on campus; anything so you don't have to go to the dining hall.
4. Don't buy a lot of college merch -- you'll get a lot of it for free!Giphy
If you go to games, events or are involved in any clubs, you will get tons of your school's merch for free: t-shirts, water bottles, phone wallets, laptop stickers, sunglasses, and more! Don't spend $30 on a t-shirt when you can simply just get one for free!!!
5. Time management is key.
This is one thing that I had to learn on my own. Get a planner to organize what you should do either throughout the week or in a day, and time it out so you can get everything done without overwhelming yourself. It takes a lot of time to master time management, but once you'll get it down, doing your schoolwork will be cake.
6. Take advantage of the gym.Giphy
The freshman 15 isn't a myth: it's 100% real. Most colleges have at least one gym, and it's free! Take advantage of it and beat the freshman 15.
7. Ask for help when you need it!!!
It's okay to ask for help when you need it. If you're confused about an assignment, ask your professor. If you need someone to vent to, talk to a close friend or family member. Ask for help if you need it. Don't bottle everything up or try to figure something out on your own if you don't know how to do it and it's stressing you out.
8. Come to terms with the fact that you're not going to be the smartest in your classes anymore.
You might have been one of the smartest people in your class in high school, but in college, there's going to be plenty of people that are smarter than you, and that's completely okay. Don't get too upset over not getting straight A's or on Dean's List.
9. RateMyProfessor.com will become your best friend when scheduling for classes!
Before you schedule your classes, look at what professor is teaching it to see how other people liked them. Each class is different, and it all depends on who's teaching the class. The professor you choose could make or break the semester!
10. Go to your professors' office hours.
It's important to stand out to your professors. What better way to do that than to go to their office hours?! It shows that you're putting in effort in their class and that you don't want to be just a number.
11. Don't buy your books from the bookstore -- invest in Chegg or Amazon!Giphy
The bookstore is insanely expensive. Most of the time, the textbooks that you need for the class are available on Chegg.com or Amazon.com to rent your books for a much cheaper price. Rather than paying over $100 for one book, you'll be paying less than that for all of the books you need!
12. No one cares about anything you did in high school.
Once you're at college, no one cares about what your score was on the SAT, ACT or AP exams. No one cares about what your GPA was. You're not in the same environment anymore.
13. College--and life--isn't meant to be easy.Giphy
You're going to have numerous breakdowns, and it's okay to let it all out. You're going to get stressed out, and it's completely normal; it's a part of life.
14. Be prepared for the weather!!!Giphy
In Philadelphia, you never know what the weather is going to be like. One day, it's going to be 90, and the next it's going to be snowing. You'll experience all four seasons in one day. Your umbrella isn't always going to get the job done when it rains because of the wind. Check the weather as soon as you wake up, and invest in a good pair of rain boots and a rain jacket; you're definitely going to need it!
15. Don't be disappointed when someone tells you "no."
Whether it be for an exclusive club, an internship or a job, you are going to be told "no." That's perfectly okay, and don't give up just because you were told "no." Just keep trying until you finally get told "yes." What is meant to be will be, and it may take time, but it will all be worth it in the end.