When I started at Delaware last fall, I thought that I would be able to continue to study the way that I did in high school and I would do well in school. I quickly learned that in college, you need to study way differently than you did in high school.
Professors don’t give you study guides like your high school teachers used to give you; you need to go through the textbook and your notes and make a study guide for yourself. Take notes on everything that is written on the board and said by your professor because if that class isn’t on UD Capture (a blessing of a class recording), you’re going to want to have all of that information when you go back to study for your exams later.
Living away from home for the majority of the year is something that you definitely have to get used to. If you’re like me and you never went to a long sleep away summer camp then it’s going to be a bit weird sleeping somewhere that isn’t your own house for a while. But, you figure out a routine and you get used to the feeling of going to your dorm every day instead of going to your house after school.
Going from living in a house with more than one room to living in a 19’ x 10’ box that you share with someone else isn’t exactly the easiest thing to do. You’ll miss your personal space and sleeping in your own room, but eventually, you start to get used to the situation and you know how to live with it. If you’re lucky, you’ll have a good roommate who will be nice and friendly, but if you have a roommate who you don’t get along with it’ll take a little bit more adjusting.
As someone who just went through a bad roommate situation, I can tell you that it won’t be fun. It’ll make you dread being in your room sometimes, but at the end of the day it’s your room and if you want to be there, then you go right ahead. Make it your space and remember that no matter what, it’s your room.
The best way to adjust is to find what you want to do on campus. Go to the club/RSO fair to find out about what you can join, there’s something for everyone. Go to the gym, find a new place to adventure, or anything else that would make you happy. If you find something that makes campus feel more like home, it’ll make the adjustment a lot easier. For me, my sorority is what made Delaware feel like home to me. Everyone is different and you just need to find your thing.
Go to class. Sure, your professors may not be taking attendance every day. But, you’re definitely going to need to know the information that they’re telling you and you shouldn’t rely on someone else’s notes to give you all of the information that you need. Communicate with your professors and go to office hours if you need help. All of this is so important for success in school. Keep a planner or use Google Calendar to keep track of all of your assignments and events so that you don’t miss anything.
Make sure to have fun and relax while you’re at school too, it can’t all be stress on academics all the time. And just remember, soon enough it’ll be summer again and you’ll already be done your first year of college.