What We Wish We Knew Before College

 

After reflecting on freshman year here at UConn, we decided to share some insight on things that we wish we would have known before coming to school. 

  1. 1. You Will Get Sick

    The one thing no one told me before I came to UConn was one that you will get sick, a lot. Pretty sure I got about five different colds throughout the year, pink eye, and strep throat. So it took me a semester to realize that taking antioxidant supplements, daily vitamins, and bringing hand sanitizer everywhere I went was a must.

  2. 2. The First Few Weeks ~Suck~

    “College is the best four years of your life!” - everyone says it, but they neglect to remind you (probably because it is long forgotten by senior year) that the first few weeks of freshman year kinda suck. You are alone in a foreign place, navigating life and new friendships, and it's hard! Just remember that you will find your place in this large university, it just might take some time and searching. Get involved, reach out to new friends, and don't be afraid to go out of your comfort zone.

  3. 3. You Will Find Your People

    People told me before I came to UConn that I will probably end up losing touch with the friends I make in the first few weeks of school, and while this was not entirely true, the first people you meet probably will not be your closest pals by the end of the year, and that’s okay. Don’t try to hold on to people if it doesn’t feel natural, because you will find good friends if you branch out and meet new people.

  4. 4. It Probably Won’t Go Like You Planned

    I came into freshman year positive I would join a sorority, but after rushing the first week, I realized greek life might not be for me. Then, instead of focusing on this aspect of the university that I was previously sure I would be a part of, I put my energy into other things I was interested in such as my majors professional fraternity and outing club. These activities, while not entirely planned, were some of the best decisions I made so far at UConn. So don’t be discouraged when your plans go awry, try something new.

  5. 5. Professional Opportunities Are There, Find Them!

    One of the best decisions I made at UConn was joining my majors professional fraternity, despite coming into college with no intention of doing so. Not only did we have fun social events where I met a majority of my close friends, but it also gave me my first look at what the professional world entails. I was able to attend a career fair, which led to multiple interviews, and eventually a summer internship, none of which would’ve happened if I hadn’t gotten involved in the frat.

  6. 6. It Goes By SO Fast

    It sounds cliche but it’s actually true that your time in college will go by fast-- especially freshman year. On move in day, and even the first few weeks of freshman year, it feels like winter break is so far in the future. But you’ll come to realize that the weeks in college fly by, and as soon as you know it you’ll be turning in your room key and heading home for the summer. Don’t take any of your time for granted while at school, freshman year particularly, because it’s this year that you’ll probably have the least amount of responsibilities to worry about. Have fun with your friends, get involved on campus, and work hard in your classes, because before you know it, your time will be up and your first year will be over, just like that.

  7. 7. Freshman 15 Is Real

    Unfortunately for many, the transition in lifestyle from living at home to being on your own in college, has the ability to cause some ~bodily changes~, that many of us know as the “Freshman 15”. The stress and new found independence that come along with being a freshman in college are enough to make many of us, myself included, forgo our self control in the buffet style dining halls. Something I’ve found to help me, was reading the ingredients of the prepared food being served at the dining halls, as well as trying to substitute the cookie I’d typically grab before leaving, with an apple or another fruit, which are just as easily accessible in the dining halls.

     

  8. 8. Budgeting Is Important

    Khalid wrote an entire song about “young, dumb, broke high school kids”, but just to let you know, the brokeness doesn’t end after high school. Up until college, I had a steady job since my sophomore year of high school. I had to leave it when I left for college, and I didn’t want to overwhelm myself with a job during my first year, so, consequently I also left behind the consistent paycheck I’d been receiving for the past 3 years. But also, freshman year of college I found myself taking up many more opportunities to splurge than I would’ve at home. From paying for Uber rides, to online shopping hauls, to treating myself to meals that weren’t from the dining hall, I realized I was quickly running out of funds. Before you end up like me, have a conversation with yourself. Try to get a job on campus if you’re ready for that! If not, try to limit yourself to a certain amount of money spent per week, or month, or even semester, and stick to that as best as you can, you and your wallet will thank me later.