As my senior year is underway, I look back at the times I've been in college where I wish I could've done better. Growing up comes at the cost of making mistakes and learning from them. There are so many things I wish I would've known before I even entered college. That'll take too long. So, these will have to suffice.
Make as many friends as you can in your first year, you will see them again and again until you graduate.
Do not buy books until they are needed. I have bought one too many books that were of no use during the semester.
Ask questions in class no matter how dumb. In fact, what I realized is, the dumber the question, the more people are also wondering about the answer.
Do not make excuses. Don't blame the teacher for poor grades, don't blame your friends for not finishing your homework, and don't blame the short due date for incomplete assignments.
Group projects! Finding the person who will take charge isn't good. TAKE CHARGE INSTEAD. Your grade relies on your portion of hard work.
Learning how to fail
DO NOT give up after failing the first assignment/quiz/midterm/exam. It's not over until it's over.
Prioritizing your education
College is about studying and getting good grades. That's your primary objective and everything else should come second. Parties, friends, hanging out, club meetings, getting drunk, gym activities… all come after you do your share of being a good student.
GPA is essential, yet not enough
GPA is of UTMOST importance. However, by itself, GPA is not enough anymore. Along with GPA, you need experience in your field that requires problem-solving. Education is only a tool needed to help with the execution.