Seventeen Tips On How To Survive Your College Freshman Year

Seventeen Tips On How To Survive Your College Freshman Year

It takes more than easy mac and coffee.
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Speaking as someone who survived their freshman year (survived as in made it to the end with blood, sweat, and tears), getting through your first year takes some actual adulting. Horrifying, I know. But with that new independence comes responsibility. Here are a couple tips on how to successfully live through your freshman year at college.

1. You don’t need those dresses and skirts you’re trying to shove in your duffel bag.

I made that mistake. They ended up collecting dust in my closet since 98% of the time I rolled out of my dorm in sweats and a free t-shirt I got that promoted some random SU club. You will 100% succumb to the groutfit within the third week.

2. Liquor before beer, you’re in the clear; beer before liquor, you’ll never be sicker.

Unless you wanna hurl your Commons food into the bushes outside a frat house, just stick to this rule.

3. Don’t take an 8 am class.

“Oh, but I got up at 6:45 a.m. for high school every day, this is totally doable!” No. Stop it. It’s not doable, it’s called being an idiot and signing yourself up for hell.


4. Don’t leave your laundry to the last minute.

It’s not in your best interest to wear the same jeans four days in a row. It’s not in your best smell factor either.

5. Ignore boys who text you after 11:30 p.m.

Those, ladies, are called players and every college is infested with them. The best insecticide to use is the cold shoulder.


6. Join a sports team or club.

Joining the SU equestrian team was the best decision I ever made. I wouldn’t have gotten through my freshman year without my girls.


7. You won’t get any studying done in your room.

Make the trek to the library, sit your butt down in the quiet section, and be the good little student your mother thinks you are.


8. Speaking of moms, make sure to call yours.

They’re your biggest cheerleader and give excellent advice.


9. Every person is just as scared and nervous on your first day as you are.


Many are too shy to make the first move. Save someone some anxiety and just sit down and introduce yourself. You’ll be glad you did it, trust me.

10. Go to office hours.

Your professor has so many students that their faces have morphed into one generic desperate college kid. Make yourself stand out by going to their office at least once a week with questions about the class. It’ll also prompt them to raise your grade from an 89 to a 90 if you’re on the edge.

11. For the love of God, take out your trash.

At one point my roommate and I collectively had over 5 full trash bags, 3 pizza boxes, and countless empty chipotle bags (courtesy of me). My mother would’ve had a heart attack if she ever saw it (sorry Mom if you’re reading this). God bless for febreeze scenties

12. Go to events for free stuff.

My mom yelled at me because I came back with about 8 new tshirts. A lot of the events also give you free snacks; I was late to Psych once because there were too many free snacks to carry.

13. If there’s a dog on campus, chase it down to pet it.


I’ve also been late to Psych because I was busy petting dogs. Totally worth it, they were really good dogs.

14. You’re paying for that gym on campus, might as well use it.

Freshman fifteen is very, very real.

15. Don’t spend all of your money on food.

Speaking from a very disappointing and hangry experience.

16. Take care of your mental health.

It’s okay to take a day to yourself, even if it means skipping class. You can’t perform to your top level if you’re drowning inside.

17. And finally, have fun.

Have fun, don’t be too serious, work hard, and make lots of friends. These are some of the best years of your life; don’t waste them.

Cover Image Credit: German International School Silicon Valley

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A Senior's Last Week Of High School

The bittersweet end.
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Well, this is it. This is what we've worked so hard the last four years - who am I kidding - basically what seems like our whole lives for. This is the very last week we will set foot as a student in our high school's hallways. As most schools are getting ready to set their seniors free at last, it all begins to set in - the excitement, the anxiousness, and also the sentiment and nostalgia.

For seniors, the years since our first day as a freshman at the bottom of the high school totem pole have seemed endless, but as we look back on these last few weeks, we realize that this year in particular has gone by extraordinarily fast. It was just yesterday that we were sitting in our classrooms for the very first time, going to our 'last first' practice, and getting our first taste of the (very real) "senioritis". With all that's going on in our lives right now, from sports and clubs, finals, and the sought after graduation ceremony, it's hard to really sit down and think about how our lives are all about to become drastically different. For some it's moving out, and for some it's just the thought of not seeing your best friend on the way to fourth period English; either way, the feels are real. We are all in a tug of war with the emotions going on inside of us; everything is changing - we're ready, but we're not.

THE GOOD. Our lives are about to begin! There is a constant whirlwind of excitement. Senior awards, getting out of school early, parties, and of course Graduation. We are about to be thrust into a world of all new things and new people. Calling our own shots and having the freedom we have so desperately desired since the teenage years began is right around the corner. Maybe the best part is being able to use these new things surrounding you to grow and open your mind and even your heart to ideas you never could before. We get the chance to sink or swim, become our own person, and really begin to find ourselves.

Things we don't even know yet are in the works with new people we haven't even met yet. These friendships we find will be the ones to last us a lifetime. The adventures we experience will transform into the advice we tell our own children and will become the old tales we pass down to our grandkids when they come to visit on the weekends. We will probably hate the all night study sessions, the intensity of finals week, and the overpowering stress and panic of school in general, just like we did in high school... But it will all be worth it for the memories we make that will outlive the stress of that paper due in that class you absolutely hate. As we leave high school, remember what all the parents, teachers, coaches, and mentors are telling you - this are the best times of our lives!

THE BAD. The sentimental emotions are setting in. We're crying, siblings are tearing up, and parents are full-out bawling. On that first day, we never expected the school year to speed by the way it did. Suddenly everything is coming to an end. Our favorite teachers aren't going to be down the hall anymore, our best friends probably won't share a class with us, we won't be coming home to eat dinner with our families...

We all said we wanted to get out of this place, we couldn't wait, we were ready to be on our own; we all said we wouldn't be "so emotional" when the time came, but yet here we are, wishing we could play one more football game with our team or taking the time to make sure we remember the class we liked the most or the person that has made us laugh even when we were so stressed we could cry these past few years. Take the time to hug your parents these last few months. Memorize the facial expressions of your little sister or brother. Remember the sound of your dad coming home from work. These little things we take for granted every day will soon just be the things we tell our college roommate when they ask about where we're from. As much as we've wanted to get out of our house and our school, we never thought it would break our heart as much as it did. We are all beginning to realize that everything we have is about to be gone.

Growing up is scary, but it can also be fun. As we take the last few steps in the hallways of our school, take it all in. Remember, it's okay to be happy; it's okay to be totally excited. But also remember it's okay to be sad. It's okay to be sentimental. It's okay to be scared, too. It's okay to feel all these confusing emotions that we are feeling. The best thing about the bittersweet end to our high school years is that we are finally slowing down our busy lives enough to remember the happy memories.

Try not to get annoyed when your mom starts showing your baby pictures to everyone she sees, or when your dad starts getting aggravated when you talk about moving out and into your new dorm. They're coping with the same emotions we are. Walk through the halls remembering the classes you loved and the classes you hated. Think of the all great times that have happened in our high school years and the friends that have been made that will never be forgotten. We all say we hated school, but we really didn't. Everything is about to change; that's a happy thing, and a sad thing. We all just have to embrace it! We're ready, but we're not...

Cover Image Credit: Facebook

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I Learned Forensic Science In One Day For HOSA SLC 2019 And Still Placed Top Ten

We all have those days where we have to cram for an exam you know nothing about the night before, but have you tried to study for it the day of the exam? I never knew I would find myself in this situation until I went to HOSA SLC. With minimal study time, my partner, Kasey Park, and I were still able to place in the Top Ten in Georgia.

Joel Lee
Joel Lee
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As a member of my school's chapter of HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America), I went to SLC (State Leadership Conference), where members all over the state of Georgia come to Atlanta to compete in a variety of competitions in the field of Science and Healthcare. All members can pick only one competition to participate in, and the guidelines and rules for each event are posted on the HOSA website.

The event I chose was Forensic Medicine, which requires a team of two people to take a written exam about Forensic Science (Round 1) and write a death report for a case study (Round 2). You must pass Round 1 to move on to Round 2. I worked with a good friend of mine, Kasey Park, for this event. HOSA recommended two textbooks to study for the event: Forensic Science: Fundamentals & Investigations 2nd Edition and Forensic Science: An Introduction to Scientific and Investigative Techniques, Fourth Edition.

Kasey and I both had the books, since Winter Break of our sophomore year (2018-2019), and we both agreed to start studying during winter break. Instead, we both completely forgot about it and when we returned to school after the break, we knew we still had time to study, since SLC was in March. We made a game plan of what chapters to read and when to read them, and we agreed to meet for reviewing the chapters we read. But, it didn't happen.

This procrastination continued about a day before we needed to leave for SLC, and we both realized we needed to study two thick textbooks in about 24 hours. We both knew at this point we just needed to cram as much information we could possibly fit into our brains.

The way we crammed was we both read the textbook as fast as possible and absorbing information as we go. Even though will not understand everything, we can still get a lot of information that can help us do well.

We studied on the way to SLC and before the Round 1 exam, so we can have the best chance possible when taking the test. My partner and I took the Round 1 exam during the afternoon, and we both we did alright, but not good, so we were worried about whether or not we made the second round. We got a notification in the evening that we made to Round 2. Kasey and I started to study all night and during the morning to cram as much information as we could. A little before noon, we took the Round 2 Case Study Test, and we thought it was a breeze.

Since we finished our event, we could finally hang out with friends from our school, as well as students from other schools. I meant so many new people at HOSA SLC. The next day, we went to the award ceremony, and my partner and I did not get in the Top 5, so we were not recognized. But later we were informed that we got 9th place, which we were happy with since we did not study very much for this exam.

From my experiences ar HOSA SLC, I have learned many things and met many new people. I would recommend that if you have a testing event, you should start to study prior to SLC to give yourself the most amount of time to study before the test. I feel that cramming last minute at SLC is ineffective and very stressful. I also think that you should try to meet new people since the conference is for members all over the state of Georgia.

If you are a middle or high schooler, I would recommend attending HOSA SLC, as it will be a memory you will never forget.

Joel Lee
Joel Lee

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