Lessons I Wish Someone Told Me Before Freshman Year Started
Student Life

Lessons I Wish Someone Told Me Before Freshman Year Started

College is not like the movies, so here are a few tips that I learned to help you through what can potentially be the best or the most difficult year of your life so far.

Arianna Saxton

You cannot make friends if you spend the first few weeks of school when other freshmen are scrambling to form "friend groups," from inside your dorm.

When it comes to finding your group, I believe that the first few weeks of freshman year are the most crucial. This is the time when everyone is the most friendly and inviting; I cannot even count the number of times some stranger came up to me, introduced themselves, gave me their snapchat, and promised we would hang out, only to never be seen again.

Take advantage of this time by spending the majority of your day outside of your dorm and solidifying these acquaintances. With this, do not always wait for someone else to reach out to you. People are so wrapped up in their own lives that they forget to consider others, so be that person to reach out first. If not for them, do it for yourself. You will thank yourself later.

If you cannot accomplish a goal through the seemingly most easy and obvious route, get creative and persistent. You can often accomplish the same goal by going through the window rather than the door.

Especially in large colleges like Syracuse, you will be overwhelmed by the number of rules you must wrestle, different crucial departments across campus that may all give you contrasting information, and different hierarchies you must access and make sense out of in order to seek information that is applicable to the goals you seek to accomplish.

Many of these people may tell you "no", but I truly believe that with a little creativity and determination, rules can be bent and broken. The key to this is to convince people to believe in you and recognize your determination. Once people believe in you personally and want to see you achieve, they will be willing to do a little leg work to help you break those stubborn rules.

Do not put so much pressure on yourself to fall in love with the college by setting so many expectations that may disappoint you with their results.

I get it, you have been fantasizing about what college would look like for you ever since your freshman year of high school. Movies and tv shows paint this unrealistic perception of the 'Hollywood version' of college, which neglects to include the crucial knowledge that college is actually really hard, and it certainly is not all rainbows, butterflies, and parties.

Despite all of your efforts to feel that seemingly perfect Gossip Girl, or 90210, our The Vampire Diaries college experience, you may struggle to feel a sense of belonging on your campus, and it may be really difficult to feel a sense of loneliness while all of your peers seem to be in love with college.

Start building your resume; this is crucial.

College is more than going from class to parties; it is an opportunity to define who you are, and reflect what you bring to any table as an individual. Potential employers what to see that you pursue your passions through getting involved in extra circulars, work, community service, and other organizations that reflect your drive, work ethic, and accountability.

I find that my experience as a bank teller for two summers is a crucial talking point that often wins over professors, potential employers, and organizations I am applying to. Letting your freshman year fly by with an empty resume is doing a disservice to your future self.

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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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