Letter to the first year “pre-” anything major

Welcome to college. You did it- you graduated high school and now you’re off to college. The hardest things you’ve ever faced- applications, ACT scores, college level and honors classes, 3 season sports, and graduation- paid off and you’re one step closer to becoming the person you’ve been dreaming of. Congratulations… but if you’re planning on any kind of grad school, here are a few things you should know right off the bat. 

 

1. You CAN do it

I can’t tell you how many times I told myself I couldn’t. I let myself believe everyone who said it would be too hard. I let a hard first semester discourage me, but I picked myself up and told myself I WAS good enough and could get to the next step in my education, and I’m still telling myself that. If you want something bad enough you’ll get it. Just work as hard as you want your dreams to come true. 

 

2. Make the people in your major your best friends

PEP leaders, upperclassmen, and classmates will be your biggest resource in the four years you spend in college. No one else understands all your nights in the library, your need for perfection and the desire to succeed better than they do. The friends who’ve been where you are just a year before will offer the best advice available and the ones who are experiencing the crazy rollercoaster of freshman year with you will be the best support you could ever ask for. They will get you through the good and the bad- and you’ll do the same for them. 

 

3. Every professor should know you by name

Introduce yourself every chance you get. Ask questions. Sit in the front row of every class. Stand out among the sea of faces professors see every day. Not only will this help you when you come begging for a letter of recommendation when grad school applications roll around (faster than you ever expected), but it could help your GPA. When finals are over and you have a 89.3 in a class- your professor will remember every time you raised your hand, came to office hours and just stopped after class to say “have a nice weekend”. I’m not saying he/ she will just give you the A ... but you’ll have a much higher chance of getting the A. 

 

4. It won’t be easy 

Grad schools hold applicants to a high standard, so you need to hold yourself to an even higher one. Get in the habit of taking the best notes, studying hard and using the resources around you. College gets harder as you go on, so if you start off putting in lots of work, when the harder classes come you’ll be ready. Put your best foot forward every day, and it’ll pay off. 

 

5. Good luck- but you don’t need it

I know you’ll do great!