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First Month Back at School: Sophomore Edition

About a year ago, I recapped the first month of my college experience for Her Campus, and it’s safe to say a lot has changed since then.

I’ve joined a number of organizations, made friends and memories, and lived out ¼ of what are, allegedly, the best years of my life! So, with that in mind, here are a few things I’ve figured out about the initial rush of the school year – the second time around.

Keep joining things!

You’re not a first-year student anymore – so what? If you’re like me, your interests have shifted slightly, you’ve done a number of things for the past year, and you’re looking to mix it up. There is absolutely nothing wrong with joining a new club or jumping into something that people have already been working on! Make this year count by doing what matters to you.

Enjoy the times when you’re not swamped

The very beginning of the school year is a shift from the freedom of summer, becoming knee deep in midterms. Take this time to hang out with friends, explore the city, go out for meals, or do anything you soon won’t have time for when your academic schedule starts filling up!

Have people’s backs, and they’ll do the same for you

One of the best things I’ve found about sophomore year is coming back to a place where I’ve already established friends. While last year was all about new experiences, there’s something comforting about the sense of familiarity I now have with Tufts. The past year has given me some super strong friendships, which I am so grateful for. It’s so important to keep those first-year relationships and build upon them so you know there’s always someone looking out for you when you may need it. Every proofread of a friend’s essay or covering their shift at work may just lead to a future invitation to something fun!

When you have to do something, do it in advance!

As my Econ TA told my class two semesters ago, “you will all learn not to start studying the day before.” Even though his warning didn’t mean much when I saw my entire econ class in Tisch the night before (early morning of?) our first exam, it sure means something now! Giving yourself time to really nail the information is so helpful. If you know what you don’t know in advance, you still have time to ask a professor or tutor questions before exam time.

Find a “focus place” that also makes you happy!

I actually realized how important this is a few days ago, when I decided to mix things up by doing my work at a nearby Starbucks. Everyone has their regular study spots, but it can become a drag to sit in the same section of the library with the same people every time you’re working. I would highly suggest mixing things up every so often – going to the Boston Public Library, a café downtown, or one of these brunch places so you can revitalize your focus and energy while checking things off your list.

Make time every day for yourself

I started getting pretty strict with myself about going to the gym as much as possible, and it’s made such a difference in my lifestyle. Not only do I get a little time (almost) every day to focus my energy on something besides academics but, putting a workout in my schedule also makes me more productive when I am doing my schoolwork; it’s the best of both worlds. Whether it’s the gym, writing in a journal, crafting or cooking (or pretty much anything else you can dream up!), make sure you do something to get your mind off of your responsibilities!

Enjoy your time…

It’s amazing how quickly last year went by, and I’m sure the next three will be the same! Enjoy campus and everything it has to offer as much as possible. Keep meeting new people, taking risks, asking for help when you need it and ~enjoying life~ as a college student!

Kaitlyn Meslin (Tufts University) is a senior majoring in International Relations with minors in Finance and Entrepreneurship. She is from Boston, MA.
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