Advice for Upcoming Freshmen - Part 1

Going to college is overwhelming. For the most part, you'll be completely on your own. You'll be moving away from home, put into a room with someone you don't know, and be responsible for everything that you do. Around this time two years ago, I had just committed to IUP. I was excited but also nervous to start a new chapter of my life. I started researching online about people's experience with college and looking up tips and advice for freshmen. So, to help the upcoming freshmen, here's my advice on college:

 

1. Get involved

This is the most common piece of advice given to upcoming freshmen, but it’s probably the most important. When you’re in college, there are many opportunities for you to get involved and meet people who are interested in the same things as you. Being a part of clubs and organizations also look great on resumes, especially if you’re an officer. If you can, try to join clubs that relate directly to your major. This lets you meet people you have classes with and build upon your skills that you learn in class.

(Photo via The Penn)

 

2. Use your meal plan

Try to stick to your meal plan as much as you can. It’s okay to go out to eat every once in a while, but that money will start to add up.

(Photo via IUP)

 

3. Eat breakfast

Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. If you eat a good breakfast, it’ll give you fuel so you’re not dragging during your morning classes.

(Photo via Pop Sugar)

 

4. Don’t go out all the time

Whether you decide to go out and party every day is up to you. However, it will become very difficult to keep up with your assignments if you go out every night. Going out on the weekends is fine, but try to stay away from going out during the week.

(Photo via Scholarship Scouts)

 

5. Write everything down

You may think you’ll remember everything, but you won’t. From meetings, to assignments, and to dinner dates, it’s hard to keep track of it all. Get a planner, write everything down, and check it every morning and night to make sure you don't forget about anything.

(Photo via Dani Lauren)

 

6. Don’t study in your dorm room Studying in your dorm room is fine if you have a quick assignment to do or a couple chapters to read in a book. If you have to write a 20 page paper though, head to the library. It’s much quieter and there are less distractions. Try to keep your dorm room for hanging out and sleeping.

(Photo via Lloyd Sealy Library)

 

7. Call your parents

Your parents want to hear from you. Take the time a couple days a week to give your parents a call to let them know you’re doing okay.

(Photo via iConnectMembers)

8. Set rules for your dorm room

Everyone has different schedules. If you like to crash early, but your roommate wants to have friends over every night, you may need to make some compromises.

(Photo via OCM)

 

9. Clean

It’s hard getting used to the fact that your mom isn’t there to clean (or remind you to clean) your room. Trust me, dorm rooms get dirty pretty fast. It’s the only place you have to live so you might as well take care of it.

(Photo via Allergy&Air)

 

10. Take time to relax

There’s no denying that college is stressful. It can really take a toll on your physical and mental health. Try to take some time every day, even if it’s only 30 minutes, to unwind and not do any school work.

(Photo via The Blissful Mind)

 

Stay tuned for Part 2!