For many of us, the beginning of a new semester means coming back to our beautiful mountain home and reconnecting with our friends and professors. However, for this year’s Freshman, moving into school marks the end of high school and adolescence and the beginning of the rest of their life. So for all you bright eyed and bushy tailed Freshman trying to figure your way around our mountain, here are some things to keep in mind as you settle in for the semester and the next four years.
- You don’t have to be best friends with your roommate.
This is something my mom told me before I moved in my Freshman year, and at the time I did not understand what she meant by this, but as my rooming situation changed, I began to see her point. The best case scenario is that you become life-long friends with your roommate, but that does not always happen, which is quite alright. Do not get me wrong, having a roommate is great because, at least for the first few weeks, you have a person you can hang out with and become friends with, however you do not want to force the friendship.
- Remember to balance.
As many of you learned in high school, the key to being successful academically is finding the balance between being social and doing the work. This holds true in college, but on a larger scale. Back in high school you were living at home, with your parents prying eye on you all the time, so when you began to become unbalanced they could help you find your balance again. Now you are away from home so it is all up to you to find the balance. This balance needs to be found in all aspects of your new college life. You need to find the balance between eating and working out. The balance between friend groups, procrastinating and school work and even with your roommate. But once you find that balance, it will become a whole lot easier to have fun here.
- Keep your door open.
I know you have been told to keep your door open about a million times, but it is so easy to meet your floor mates that way. I met one of my best friends because she left her door open and I needed a garbage bag. Of course someone needs to be the first one to walk in and talk but that is a whole other issue.
- Being homesick is okay.
Being homesick is almost like a rite of passage for college Freshmen, it happens to literally everyone. Now it is definitely worse for some people but every single person has at some point missed their home, friends and family, so do not be afraid to admit it or talk to your RA or friends about it.
- Do not be afraid to participate in class.
Again, I know you have heard this before, but by participating in class you are helping out your classmates as well as your professors. You help your fellow students because by you asking or answering questions, you may help clarify a point for another student. Also, no professor wants to feel like they are boring their students or wasting both their time and yours.
- FOMO is okay in moderation.
FOMO, or the fear of missing out, is totally okay, as long as you are not constantly feeling that way. And if you are, then maybe it is a sign for you to join new clubs or expand your horizons.
- Ask for help when you need it.
Do not be proud, just ask for help, this is what your professors, RA and friends are here for.
- Go to your professor’s office hours.
They want to see you there, if this was not the case, they would not hold office hours. Office hours is a great way to show your professor that you care and are interested in their class. It is also a good way to get participation credit if you are not one to participate in class. Also, most of the professors here are extremely personable and cannot wait to get to know you, so just go in and chat with them!
- Be yourself.
College is a great time to reinvent yourself and start over, but you do not want to lose sight of who you are. Be bold, say what you feel, and just be yourself. That is the best advice anyone can give you.
- Call your mom.
Trust me, just call her. She wants to hear from you.