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5 Pieces of Advice to Ignore Going Into Freshman Year

The minute people find out you’re heading to college in the fall, they have to tell you the MOST important piece of advice they have, and let me tell you, you will receive quite a bit of it. While some advice can be helpful, some can also be misleading, and it’s important to know whose advice to actually follow going into freshman year. That being said, here are the top five worst pieces of advice I received before I got to college:

 

1. Stalk Your Roommates on Social Media!

The minute I told my friends I got my roommate assignment, they immediately asked me “What are their Instagrams?” I told them, and we all dove into a deep investigation of both of my roommates, trying to discover any details we could from their social media presence. Now, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but something I learned after doing so is that people present themselves differently online than they do in person. I had preconceived ideas of what my roommates were like before I even spoke to them, and after doing so, I realized how inaccurate these judgments were. I’m not saying you can’t or shouldn’t follow your roommate on Instagram or friend her on Facebook, but merely that it shouldn’t be the first interaction between the two of you. Try reaching out over text or email first and get to know who they really are, before viewing their social media presence. 

 

2. Don’t Bring Anything Except Sheets, You Can Just Buy it When You Get There

So many people told me that I didn’t need to bring anything to college except for some clothes and my sheets. Me being the overprepared planner that I am, I ignored them to the extreme and brought everything I could possibly imagine needing, and I’m so happy that I did. At least at Conn, the first few days of your college experience is Orientation, where you’re pretty much scheduled for activities from the minute you wake up to the minute you go to sleep. You don’t have time to run out to Target and seeing other students stress about not having towels or laundry detergent when they needed it made me extremely grateful that I was the over-packer that I am. 

 

3. You Don’t Need to Bring Books, You’re Going to Be Reading So Much Already

This one is more personal, as I consider myself an avid reader. I read every night before I fall asleep, and my bookshelf at home covers an entire wall floor-to-ceiling and is crammed with books. Coming to college I knew I was not going to be able to bring my entire book collection with me, but I was shocked when most people I asked for advice told me not to bring books at all because I was going to be reading so much for school. Now they weren’t wrong, I definitely am reading more for school than I ever have before, but I still really love losing myself in someone else’s story and feeling my eyelids grow heavy reading a book I love before I fall asleep.

 

4. Always Say Yes to Social Opportunities, It Will Help You Make Friends

This is something I felt so much pressure to do during the first couple of weeks I was at school. Every time someone would invite me to go off campus with them, watch a movie, or go out that night I felt such an obligation to say yes that I was truly exhausting myself. As someone who truly values some alone time to recharge, I learned that I have to pick and choose my social events instead of saying yes to everyone and that doing so didn’t hinder me from making friends. 

 

5. It’s So Close, You Can Go Home Whenever You Want!

Coming from “just outside of Boston” like seemingly everyone here at Conn (although I really am), all of my friends relieved my worries by saying if I didn’t like it or if I was homesick within the first couple weeks I should just go home for the weekend, seeing as Conn is so close. While appealing, I learned from my friends that did go home early on that it actually makes the transition harder. The homesickness that I felt constantly within the first couple weeks eventually faded, and now only comes and goes. My friends who went home had to transition to college and leave their families all over again, and are still struggling to get through that. I think that distance can be really beneficial to helping you become an independent person at college, while also making those occasional trips home even more special!

 

Ellie Crowley

Conn Coll '23

I'm a first year at Conn from Arlington, MA planning on being an English major!
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