10 tips to help with college

Are you nervous for college? Worried about getting lost, or even off track? Here are ten useful tips to keep you on track and organized in your college years!

1. Go to all orientations. There are a lot of campus tours, even though they might be boring, you should go to all of them. The faster you learn your way around campus, the better you’ll feel, and the better prepared you’ll be when you have to get around campus.

2. Get to know your roommate and others in your residence hall. The people you live with, most of whom you are going through similar experiences and emotions, are your main safety net.

3. Get organized. In high school, the teachers tended to lead you through all of your homework and due dates. In college, the professors post the assignments, often for the entire semester, and expect you to be prepared. Buy an organizer, use an app, or get a big wall calendar, whatever it takes for you to know when assignments are due.

4. Find the ideal place for you to study. It may be your dorm room or a cozy corner of the library, but find a place that works best for you to get your work done. Try to avoid as many distractions as possible.

5. Go to class. It may be tempting to sleep in when you have to get up early. Avoid the temptation. Besides learning the material by attending classes, you’ll also receive vital information from the professors about what to expect on tests, changes in due dates, and more.

6. Become an expert on course requirements and due dates. Professors spend hours and hours preparing course syllabi and calendars so that you will know exactly what is expected of you, and when. One of the lamest excuses a student can give a professor: “I didn’t know it was due today.”

7. Meet with your professors. There are only upsides to getting to know your professors, especially if later in the semester you run into some issues. Professors schedule office hours for the purpose of meeting with students, take advantage of that time.

8. Get to know your academic adviser. This is the person who will help you with course conflicts, adding or dropping courses, scheduling of classes for future semesters, and deciding on majors and minors. This person is a key resource for you, and should be the person you turn to with any academic issues or conflicts. And don’t be afraid of requesting another adviser if you don’t click with the one first assigned to you.

9. Seek a balance. College life is a mixture of social and academic happenings. Don’t tip the balance too far in either direction. Plan it out so you can manage both at a good balance that works for you.

10. Get involved on campus. A big problem for a lot of new students is a combination of homesickness and a feeling of not quite belonging. Consider joining a group, student organization, club, sorority/fraternity, or sports team. You’ll make new friends, learn new skills, and feel more connected to your school.

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