11 Unexpected Things That WILL Ruin Your First Year Of College, If You're Not Careful

11 Unexpected Things That WILL Ruin Your First Year Of College, If You're Not Careful

You're finally all on your own in the big wide world. What should you expect?

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Your freshman year will be filled with joy and excitement and new experiences. Sadly, it will also be filled with stress, doubts and possibly tears. Here are some things to look out for going through your freshman year of college. Don't let these things mess up the amazing year you are bound to have!

1. Welcome Week

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A necessary evil, but it will seem never-ending. It might be overwhelming and terrify you for actual classes to start, but believe me, things will slow down and you'll get to relax.

2. The size of campus

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It's so scary trying to make sure you get to every class on time and don't get lost. I suggest taking a few hours before or during the first week to just map out your classes and walk them if possible. Makes all the stress fade away.

3. "Your" seat in class

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Most teachers won't assign seats, but there will be a seat that you choose and it just becomes YOUR seat. At least once, halfway through the semester, someone will take your seat. Make sure you get to class super early the next day and show them who's boss.

4. The college party scene

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Whether you become involved or not, it will affect your college experience. Maybe your roommate is a big partier, or maybe you just see some random girl stumbling up the stairs. Be kind and ready to help your peers if you don't participate, and if you do, BE SAFE. You're told so many times how much one offense can ruin a college career, and depending on your career path and the severity, that is incredibly true. Be safe for yourself and your friends.

5. The hookup culture

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Tinder is a huge thing at colleges, and not everyone is clear with their intentions. Coming from someone who's been through it, don't doubt your gut feeling. If you don't think hookup culture would be healthy for you, don't do it. If you do, BE SAFE.

6. General dating

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In college, you have a lot more time to spend with a significant other and a lot more alone time with them. This can sometimes make people get carried away and forget about other commitments and friends. Dating is great and fun, but remember what you're at college for.

7. Intense classes

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There will be that one class that you're like, "This sounds really hard, but I can do it." Especially if it's not for your major, follow your guts and drop it if needed! Your GPA will thank you later.

8. The choice of 800+ student organizations

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This was one of the most overwhelming things for me. Know that you don't need to do everything, and it really looks better if you're super involved in a few things than kinda involved in a ton of things.

9. Your mental health

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For some, maybe this one is super unexpected, but it can sneak up on you quickly. Check in with yourself and get help if needed. It will be much easier to get through things earlier than later.

10. Exams and papers

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If you're like me, you procrastinate almost constantly. It's really hard to get through college like this, but it is possible. Try not to procrastinate, but if you do, be prepared for late nights filled with caffeine.

11. Grades and your GPA

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It is definitely important to get good grades, but overall, it's important to do your best and go for your goals. The timeline doesn't matter as much as reaching the goal, so don't worry if you've gotta retake a class or two. If you're really passionate about the end-goal, it will all turn out in the end.

My first year was scary and stressful and full of bad habits. Despite all of this, it was also life-changing, fun and filled with love and new experiences. Don't let the sub-par things ruin all the amazing things. If you love your school and find your calling, college will be the best time of your life.

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14 Signs You Go To A Small School No One Has Ever Heard Of

"Your class size is what?!?"

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When most people are in high school, they look at all of the big schools that are known around the country. Schools like Rutgers, Ohio State, UCLA, University of Pittsburgh and West Virginia University are often at the top of peoples' lists. Believe it or not, some people don't want to attend a huge college. If you're like me, you like having small class sizes where your professors get to know you and you always see someone you know when you're walking on campus.

Once you decide where you're going and become a student there, you constantly hear the same comments from people, whether they be good or bad- but you wouldn't want it any other way. Here are signs that you go to a small school that no one has ever heard of:

1. People always mess up your mascot

Rider University

"Broncs? Like the Denver Broncos?"

"No. Just the Broncs."

2. "Oh I've never heard of that. Where is it?"

3. "Wouldn't you rather go to *insert huge state school here*?"

The answer is always the same — nope.

4. You find people all the time who know or is related to someone who went to your school

"Oh, my cousin's friend went there!"

5. "Your class size is what?!?"

6. You've never had class in a lecture hall

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Or class with more than 50 students.

7. When people come to visit, they can't believe how small your campus is compared to theirs

Well, at least we can get up 10 minutes before class starts instead of an hour to catch a bus.

8. Dining options are limited

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But you joke around and make the most of it, secretly hoping your campus will open a Panera or Chipotle like every other school.

9. People are amazed that you actually get to know your professors and the people in your classes, and that they get to know you

Not to mention that professors are a great reference for getting a job after graduation.

10. If you went to a big high school, your college isn't much bigger

Rider University

There are about 1,000 students per class, so only around 300-400 more students than you graduated high school with.

11. Your school doesn't have all of the big sports, like football

Jamie Lewkowitz

But hey, at least we're still undefeated!

12. When you get into your major classes, you always have the same people in them

13. You can't find anything with your school's logo on it, so constantly buy more apparel from the bookstore

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You walk out of there $100 poorer with a new sweatshirt, mug, and sweatpants that you didn't need.

14. You get really excited when someone has actually heard of your school

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What I Wish I Could Tell My Freshman Self

A collection of (decent) advice from my friends to yours.

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When I asked my friends what they wish they could tell their freshmen selves, I expected some feel-good, nostalgic stories. What I got might just be better. The following advice describes why I chose the friends I did, and my advice to you is to find ones that make every aspect of life, even this article, a whole lot funnier.

1. "Don't eat that 3rd caf cookie"

Yes, we know it's tempting. But take it from us, 2 per meal will satisfy your sweet tooth. Do us one better and have a carrot with those delicious, warm, chocolate chip cookies. Especially if you just treated yourself with a famous car grilled cheese and fries.

2. "If you drink chocolate milk with every meal that's an extra 600 calories a day"

I'm not really a calorie counter as much as I am a cookie counter, but this sounds legit. The caf beverage choices can be tempting, but take it from a dedicated chocolate milk drinker. If she says the calories aren't worth it, then they aren't.

3. "If you don't yank the wire to get off the CATA bus you'll wind up going through all of Lansing for 2 hours and completely miss your class"

I've done this too. The 1 bus is a dangerous game. LEARN THE BUS ROUTES and more importantly know when to get off! Don't assume someone else will pull the yellow cord, just do it. Even if it's for the wrong stop, which I've done 1000 times, don't be embarrassed, it's better to be safe than sorry. You WILL end up at the capitol building or somewhere so unfamiliar, so don't forget to pull it. If you're listening to music, make sure you can hear what stop is next, I promise it's in your best interest.

4. "Buy a bus pass"

This is coming from my friend who I have witnessed spend the 60 cents multiple times a week. However, you spoiled freshmen are exposed to a new phenomenon. You get free rides throughout campus. Take advantage of that this winter-even when you're squished in there.

5. "Study harder"

I don't know if I agree with this one so much. I like that phrase that says something about when you die you won't wish you spent more time at work or school but with the people you love. So yes do good in school, but I say have fun. Screw you, Sophia.

6. "Choose community bathrooms instead of suite style so you don't have to clean it"

This piece of advice is also from my bus passless friend. Her bathroom wasn't very clean. Enough said.

7. "Don't waste your time bringing a bike"

I'd have to say that my bike did get me places fast. However, once it is even a little windy, it was miserable. You also risk lots of collisions, which most of us have experienced, even if it was when on foot.

8. "Netflix can be replayed, parties can't"

Binge-watching Netflix movies and shows is amazing. Relaxing nights are a must, but if you find yourself choosing your laptop more than your friends, you are doing college wrong. Be with your friends. Go do fun stuff.

9. "Unloft your bed"

That thing is a trap. If your bed is lofted, it is 10 times harder to get up on a cold, winter morning when you are cuddled in your blankets. The thought of climbing down is preposterous. Make up for storage other ways, unloft your bed by any means possible- it will just make your life easier.

10. "It's okay not to know what you want to do for the rest of your life, and it's okay to be confused about your major"

This is the sappy I was going for, so thanks Maddy. As I rambled on about in my first article, I've changed my major plenty of times. It's totally okay to be confused and curious. Learn about as much as you can! You will surely find your calling, and you will find amazing friends along the way to help you with that.

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