Why Being a Sophomore is Better Than Being a Freshman, as told by Harry Potter

Although the beginning of freshman year was riddled with anxiety, stress and unrealistic expectations, I can say from personal experience that sophomore year is a major improvement in all aspects of college life. Here are just a few of the things that make sophomore year so much sweeter:

1. Sophomores already have a group of friends to come back to. Freshman year was full of introductions, cheesy icebreakers and pressure to immediately become best friends with everyone you met, but sophomore year is not. There’s already an established group of friends whom you love and have seen through the best and worst times. Although there’s plenty of opportunity to meet new people and see new faces, sophomore year comes with the comfort of having people around that we’re already close to.

2. Sophomores already know their way around campus. Gone are the days of endless Google mapping or bus route stalking. Freshmen are a cluster-funk of anxiety and confusion thanks to the campus maps that make them either too early or too late to class. Sophomores, however, coolly slide into lecture at the perfect cusp of “early enough to find a seat” and “late enough to not wait outside for the professor.” No more awkward dawdling outside of the lecture hall, and no more asking other students where to find the classroom.

3. Sophomores save a ton of money on textbooks. Freshmen are prey to scams of the university’s bookstore and enterprising upperclassmen, sophomore year lets students play the upper hand in the bargaining. Now that you have friends and acquaintances who are taking some of the same classes, you can mooch off them, or – at the very least – score a major deal. Sophomores also know to ask friends who have already taken the same classes for advice on whether or not to purchase the textbook or if there are cheaper alternatives.

4. Sophomores are past most of the boring prerequisite classes for their major. Goodbye to General Chemistry and other introductory-level classes. As you climb the rungs of your major, you can get into information and courses that are truly interesting. They’ll remind you why you selected your major in the first place. Class sizes also tend to get smaller, which means you get to interact with TAs and professors on a more personal level and get more information about the field you’re heading into.

5. You’ve worked off the Freshman 15 and know how to stay healthy. You can now laugh and/or have pity on the freshmen still constrained to the buffet-style campus meal plan. You tried to “get your money’s worth” from the freshman-year meal plan, you can now shop for yourself and make more conscientious decisions about your lifestyle and food choices. Sophomore year is an overall healthier year than freshman year ever was.

6. You have your life already figured out (sort of). Okay, so you may not have your life planned out entirely, but as sophomores, you come in with a focus and determination that you didn’t have as freshmen. You mostly know what you want to be involved in at school, and you know how to prioritize your time more efficiently. With at least some sort of theoretical plans for the future, as well as a better understanding of the resources available to you at school, sophomore year is much less stressful.

Get ready for a fantastic second year on campus, collegiettes™!