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10 Things I Wish I Knew as a Freshman


Appreciate your time at Stuart. If I’ve said it once I’ve said it a million times: Stuart is the superior dining option.  High quality food, minimal lines, friendly staff?  It doesn’t get better than that.  But it does end – so go ahead and eat that extra meal on the Newts.

Campus really will be here when you get back from Boston, I promise.  It’s no secret that Boston College is filled with exciting events and opportunities.  But do you know what else is?  Boston.  We live in an incredible city with so much to explore.  For many of us, this is our only four years here in Bean Town.  Don’t be afraid to take a walk on the freedom trail, check out a Red Sox game, or window shop (who am I kidding, real shop) on Newbury Street.  The Mods aren’t going anywhere… for now.


Herb cream cheese at Hillside.  Just ask for it.

Your assigned academic advisor isn’t going to be your actual academic advisor – you have to go find your own!  Coming from a close-knit (and tiny) high school, I assumed my randomly assigned academic advisor would be ready to check in on me, guide me through the academic perils of collegiate life, and be a shoulder to lean on.  Nope.  But just because a name on a piece of paper isn’t ready to be your academic support system over the next four years doesn’t mean that there isn’t one out there waiting for you.  Office hours are great, and professors that you love in the classroom are even better.  Find someone you click with and follow up – you never know who could be just a door knock away.

Rent your textbooks.  Answer me this honestly: do you ever actually use your textbook once the class has wrapped up?  Don’t lie to me.  Once that final exam has been squared away there is approximately zero chance you are perusing the pages of Biodiversity Connections on your free time.  Instead, rent your textbooks.  It’ll save you time, money, and haste.  Trust me.

Never take the B line. Ever.  There are a shocking seventeen stops that separate the Boston College T station from the rest of the green line at Kenmore.  Seventeen.  Not to mention three of them pass through BU, and that’s somewhere you should never voluntarily put yourself (sorry…).

They’re going to take away the ice cream at the Chocolate Bar, so you better start stockpiling.  I get it. Gelato is healthier, fresher, and fancier.  But nothing replaces the creamy goodness of Chocolate Bar ice cream circa 2011.  Had I known it’s extinction was impending I would have stock piled appropriately, but alas, we’ve been robbed. 

You’ll find the people you love doing the things you love.  Meeting people at BC can seem daunting, especially in your first year on the Heights.  What are you supposed to do with these 9,800 individuals you now share a campus with?  How do you meet them?  WHERE do you meet them?  As obvious as it might seem, the answer is simple: you meet them wherever you’re being yourself.  Sharing an interest is like sharing a hometown – but without the baggage.  It’s all the personal identity, passion, and comfort without any of the awkward prom photos.  So get involved with what you like doing here on campus (whether it’s a club, dance group, or sports team), and chances are you’ll find people you like to do it with (hey, get your mind out of the gutter).

You can share a table at the Rat, but you need your own table at Eagles Nest.  There’s an awkward lesson you only need to learn once.  Big long tables in Rat?  Fair game.  Big circular tables in Eagles?  Game over.  Think of it this way: the Rat is basically a library with food, Eagles is basically a restaurant.  Would you want someone crashing your dinner at Cheesecake Factory?  I think not.

Finally, the years here are going to fly by.  Don’t get so busy planning them that you forget to experience them.  We’re planners.  We’re planners and we’re volunteers and we’re interns and we’re researchers and we’re… busy.  There always seems to be another class to take or job opportunity to explore, and in the rush of realizing how little time we have here it can be easy to forget that that time is now.  Take a deep breath.  You’re at the beginning of some of the most incredible years of your life, and let me tell you: they’re not ones that you want to miss.  So go ahead and write down every glorious detail in that Lilly Pulitzer (R.I.P.) planner of yours.  Just do me a favor and make sure to put the pen down long enough to enjoy them.

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