9 Thoughts Of Every Incoming College Freshman

9 Thoughts Every Incoming Freshman is Having

Whether you knew you where you were going to college since birth, or since sometime in May, the prospect is still terrifying.

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1. Will I make friends at Orientation?

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I came to orientation knowing no one, only vaguely recognizing people from Instagram. Maybe you were active in the GroupMe and had found some pals to hang out with there, or maybe your friends from home were there, too. But for me, I had to go around and awkwardly insert myself and introduce myself. If being marched around campus wasn't exhausting enough, the emotional toll that the awkwardness took definitely did the trick.

In reality, you'll probably make a whole new group of friends once you get on campus. It won't be hard to find your niche, and the awkwardness will subside after a while.

2. I hope my roommate isn't a weirdo.

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We've all heard the horror stories. Roommates that prefer to live in squalor, don't shower, and don't contribute can make tensions rise between roommates. Luckily, this is usually the minority. As long as you're honest about your habits and preferences and communicate, things should go swimmingly.

I got to meet my roommate before orientation. I was so nervous! We got along great over text and seemed to be pretty similar, but what if I hated her in real life?! Thankfully, my fears were unfounded and we got along great! I can't wait to tackle the beast of living together with her!

3. My 4.0 in high school will make college a breeze.

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Wrong. As much as you hated hearing your high school teachers say it, college is a totally different ballgame. People who slacked off in high school can get 4.0's and people with straight A's in high school can end up failing out. It's all about the work that you put into it.

Most professors are pretty flexible and are willing to give you some wiggle room. However, you have to show that you're making an effort and are committed to doing well.

4. The Freshman 15 is a myth.

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NOT A MYTH. When I first started living on a college campus, I gained fifteen pounds. This quickly turned into the Freshman 40.

It's easy to overeat because people are going to eat literally all the time. It also doesn't help that most of the campus food is really bad for you. It's a fragile balance, but if you watch what you eat, maybe you can stave off the pounds.

5. I can do this all by myself.

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As strong and as independent as you'll feel when finally being out in the real world, you'll need some help.

Whether this be family, friends, professors, or counselors, you need someone who will be there for you, whether you need help or just someone to talk to. College and living on your own are stressful at times and if you don't vent, you'll eventually feel like you're going to explode. Make sure you have a support system.

6. I can totally skip class. No attendance!

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We've all skipped classes before, that's a given. But it isn't exactly the smartest move in college. Some professors do, in fact, take attendance. Some even grade you on it! But even if your professor doesn't care about attendance, it's still smart to go. You're missing lecture time that you paid for, and potentially things that could be on exams.

7. I don't know what I want to do.

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You're not alone in this feeling of uncertainty. College is the first step to beginning your career and the rest of your life. Not only do you have to pick a major, but there are so many other things you can do that it can become overwhelming.

It's best to prioritize things that you really care about doing, not just for the resume boost. In addition, you should pick a major that you fall in love with. College gives you the opportunity to explore fields you may not have even known existed. Don't sweat the indecisiveness too much, everyone has it.

8. I can totally handle an 8 A.M. class.

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This one definitely doesn't apply to everyone.

I am a habitual night owl. Going to sleep at 1 in the morning is early for me. However, in high school, I woke up every morning at 5:30 to catch the bus, so I thought 7:30 was going to be a breeze. I can't express how wrong I was. I honestly question how I was able to function my last semester when I was forced to take an 8 a.m. physics course.

If you value your sanity and have the option, don't take the 8 a.m.

9. Studying probably won't even be that different than in high school.

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WRONG.

Unless you have a photographic memory and/or are a flat-out genius, you will definitely need to set out a defined time for nothing but studying. Blowing off a few assignments can dig a hole that you likely will not be able to dig yourself out of.

In addition, many people have trouble with good study habits. A good rule of thumb I've learned is to study the material to the point where you can teach it to someone else.

Good luck to all in their freshman years!

Cover Image Credit:

Olivia Hawkins

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So, You Want To Be A Nurse?

You're going to find that nursing isn't really about the medicine or the assessments. Being a nurse is so much more than anything that you can learn in school. Textbooks can't teach you compassion and no amount of lecture time will teach you what it truly means to be a nurse.

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To the college freshman who just decided on nursing,

I know why you want to be a nurse.

Nurses are important. Nursing seems fun and exciting, and you don't think you'll ever be bored. The media glorifies navy blue scrubs and stethoscopes draped around your neck, and you can't go anywhere without hearing about the guaranteed job placement. You passed AP biology and can name every single bone in the human body. Blood, urine, feces, salvia -- you can handle all of it with a straight face. So, you think that's what being a nurse is all about, right? Wrong.

You can search but you won't find the true meaning of becoming a nurse until you are in the depths of nursing school and the only thing getting you through is knowing that in a few months, you'll be able to sign the letters "BSN" after your name...

You can know every nursing intervention, but you won't find the true meaning of nursing until you sit beside an elderly patient and know that nothing in this world can save her, and all there's left for you to do is hold her hand and keep her comfortable until she dies.

You'll hear that one of our biggest jobs is being an advocate for our patients, but you won't understand until one day, in the middle of your routine physical assessment, you find the hidden, multi-colored bruises on the 3-year-old that won't even look you in the eyes. Your heart will drop to your feet and you'll swear that you will not sleep until you know that he is safe.

You'll learn that we love people when they're vulnerable, but you won't learn that until you have to give a bed bath to the middle-aged man who just had a stroke and can't bathe himself. You'll try to hide how awkward you feel because you're young enough to be his child, but as you try to make him feel as comfortable as possible, you'll learn more about dignity at that moment than some people learn in an entire lifetime.

Every class will teach you about empathy, but you won't truly feel empathy until you have to care for your first prisoner in the hospital. The guards surrounding his room will scare the life out of you, and you'll spend your day knowing that he could've raped, murdered, or hurt people. But, you'll walk into that room, put your fears aside, and remind yourself that he is a human being still, and it's your job to care, regardless of what he did.

Each nurse you meet will beam with pride when they tell you that we've won "Most Trusted Profession" for seventeen years in a row, but you won't feel that trustworthy. In fact, you're going to feel like you know nothing sometimes. But when you have to hold the sobbing, single mother who just received a positive breast cancer diagnosis, you'll feel it. Amid her sobs of wondering what she will do with her kids and how she's ever going to pay for treatment, she will look at you like you have all of the answers that she needs, and you'll learn why we've won that award so many times.

You'll read on Facebook about the nurses who forget to eat and pee during their 12-hour shifts and swear that you won't forget about those things. But one day you'll leave the hospital after an entire shift of trying to get your dying patient to eat anything and you'll realize that you haven't had food since 6:30 A.M. and you, too, will be one of those nurses who put everything else above themselves.

Too often we think of nursing as the medicine and the procedures and the IV pumps. We think of the shots and the bedpans and the baths. We think all the lab values and the blood levels that we have to memorize. We think it's all about the organs and the diseases. We think of the hospitals and the weekends and the holidays that we have to miss.

But, you're going to find that nursing isn't really about the medicine or the assessments. Being a nurse is so much more than anything that you can learn in school. Textbooks can't teach you compassion, and no amount of lecture time will teach you what it truly means to be a nurse.

So, you think you want to be a nurse?

Go for it. Study. Cry. Learn everything. Stay up late. Miss out on things. Give it absolutely everything that you have.

Because I promise you that the decision to dedicate your life to saving others is worth every sleepless night, failed test, or bad day that you're going to encounter during these next four years. Just keep holding on.

Sincerely,

The nursing student with just one year left.

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The Benefits Of Being Bothered

Fordham University creates students who are constantly bothered...in a good way.

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This past weekend, I volunteered as a member of Fordham's Rose Hill Society for the Spring Open House on campus. The Bronx was buzzing with hundreds of potential students gazing in awe at our welcoming campus and frantic moms and dads flooding my fellow tour guides and me with statistical questions. Most of these students have less than a month to make one of the most memorable decisions of their lives, and it was the least I could do to share with them how happy I am with my decision.

As a prospective student on Fordham's campus, I unfortunately never had the opportunity to hear Father McShane, the president of Fordham University, speak. Some of my closest friends have actually accredited Father McShane with the reason they chose to attend Fordham, deeming him as an eloquent speaker and a true representation of why Fordham University is so special. So, with some time to spare between giving tours, I chose to listen to Father McShane's welcome address in the Rose Hill Gymnasium.

As much as I would like to highlight all the reasons to come to Fordham that Father McShane spoke of (because as a student, I can easily agree that they were all real and true), I'd rather write about one specific section of his speech that struck me as more valid and meaningful than the other obvious reasons of why Fordham University is so great. In the midst of raving about the intelligence and curiosity that Fordham students possess, Father McShane simply said that students at Fordham not only become "bothered," but also learn to feel comfortable with that uncomfortable feeling. Having been a student at Fordham for the past two years, this concept really resonated with me. Fordham's academic curriculum requires students to take a number of core classes in order to graduate. These classes can sometimes be tedious and, honestly, just annoying, especially once you've decided on a specific major. I've come to realize, however, that these classes help students become the well-rounded, knowledgable, and "bothered" students that Fordham prides itself on possessing.

I realize that "being bothered" is a phrase that usually has a negative connotation. As a student who has definitely learned about, wrote about and excessively talked about her fair share of bothersome topics, I've realized that being bothered is in some ways more beneficial than one would assume. Father McShane expanded on this concept by stating that Fordham students become bothered by social issues, injustices, and their lack of knowledge, among other things. For me, I can confidently say that I have been bothered by more issues, controversies, and injustices while attending Fordham University than I have in my entire lifetime. Classes that you'd assume would focus on boring subjects have actually been the ones that have expanded my knowledge the most about our world. For example, a course required for students to take is an English course labeled "Texts & Contexts." For me, I assumed this course would fall directly into the category of boring literature classes that constantly focus on vocabulary, grammar, and symbolism. As much as this is true, the course that I enrolled in, which is sub-titled "(In)Equality," has led me to become more comfortable with having uncomfortable conversations, sometimes even wanting to continue these conversations outside of the classroom.

I can go on forever ranting about how grateful I am that Fordham has allowed me to have these conversations and that I know I will graduate being more bothered than I have ever been before. I will not bore you with these excessive details and examples, however, mostly because I am reaching 650 words and need to spend more time working on homework assignments than I do writing silly articles about why I love my university. I guess you can just add this to the list of things that bother me...

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