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What I Wish I Did & Didn’t Do During My First Year of College

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at WSU chapter.

As a junior, I still have to remind myself that there isn’t anything wrong with not having everything figured out. Here are some things that have helped me so far, and I hope they do the same for you too! 

Being Social 

I never counted myself as ‘popular’ in high school or even ‘social’ in general. I had a solid group of friends, and to this day, I’m glad it was just that! There is nothing wrong with sticking to your small group of friends. However, being at WSU gave me the opportunity to meet so many more people due to the mass amounts of students. It’s very rare to find a solid group of friends at first. Don’t panic if you don’t feel like you’ve strongly connected with someone even a few weeks or months in! 


I didn’t fully think of myself as a party girl in high school; that being said, I know some would beg to differ (sorry, Grandma). The biggest reason that not everyone considered me a partier is because I got all of my work done BEFORE I did any crazy things. I kept this habit up during college, which saved my GPA. You could see me at a party most Thursday-Saturday nights while keeping my A average. College is a great time to learn your limits, just not to an extreme level. Keep your eyes on your priorities, pace yourself, find good friends to go out with, and you’ll be just fine. This will be a skill that you’ll appreciate your whole life. 

Accepting FOMO

Accepting that it’s easy to have FOMO (the Fear Of Missing Out) is not an easy thing. Understanding your priorities with classes, friends, and clubs is hard to balance. In college, being away from your parents means you suddenly don’t have someone to tell you to finish your homework before you can do something. Having a balance of homework and social life is a necessity for your mental health. One without the other is bound to overwhelm you sooner than you think.  

Class Loads

I can never thank those who told me to calm down about class loads enough. While I pride myself on accomplishing chaotic things, your first year of college is not the time to test this. This could easily be your first time taking college courses, your first time living in a new place, or even your first time away from family and friends. There is nothing wrong with acknowledging how stressful this can be. Take some easier classes during your first semester! Get a routine down! After you feel comfortable, start taking the more challenging classes and extracurriculars. 

Have Fun

No matter your trials over the next few years, allow yourself to have fun! These are the times you will look back at and tell stories of. This is the time to learn more about yourself and what you want to do with your life. 

Alden Perrine is the campus correspondent at Her Campus for the Washington State University chapter. She is in charge of scheduling, managing the team, and does the final round of edits. She is very passionate about writing and will also write from time to time for Her Campus. Beyond Her Campus, Alden is currently working on her Literary Studies major, with a creative writing minor and a certification in editing and publishing. Her goals are to publish a book and become a screenplay writer or work in publishing. Her favorite things to write about include pop culture, specifically Taylor Swift, films, TV shows, and novels. Her favorites of all of these things are (currently) the Red album, The Breakfast Club, Gilmore Girls, and all things Taylor Jenkins Reid. In her free time, Alden enjoys traveling! Her favorite places she has been to are Italy and Greece. She hopes to travel to many more places in the future.