For millions of young people, the adjustment to college life from under the wing of their parents can be a challenge. College life requires a mature, responsible approach to academics as well as developing the life skills that adulthood demands. Use the advice found here to help you make the transition to adulthood go smoothly.
Don’t worry about choosing your major right away
Most schools give you until your junior year to select a major, so you should take time to explore different options and figure out what you most enjoy and might want to make a career out of before you select your major.
Don’t try to do everything in one semester. It’s easy to be an overachiever when there’s so much to do and everything’s new. You will burn out quickly if you try to take the maximum number of credits and join every campus activity that sounds interesting. Take a reasonable number of credits and try one or two activities your first semester.
Visit the dorm before deciding to live there
You may discover that you don’t want to live in that environment. Not only that, but you may find that you prefer one dorm over the other. Make sure you will get the choice you signed up for, and make sure you have a contingency plan in place if you chose a single room but end up in a quad.
Why are you attending college? It is important to answer this question for yourself. Are you in college just because it seems like the thing to do? Are you there to just have a college experience? Are you there to learn a specific subject. Carefully evaluate why it is you are attending college and prioritize.
Networking is one of the smartest things that you can do while you are in college. This will help you to not only broaden your group of friends, but also expand your possibilities when you are out of college looking for a job. Do not dismiss anyone in college, as they could be valuable to your future.
Download foreign language learning podcasts and MP3 lessons onto your MP3 player or tablet. Listen to the lessons while driving or riding the bus to school. This will help prepare you for your foreign language classes. You can practice pronunciation, and work on vocabulary instead of wasting your travel time.
When taking a test, remember that it is just a test. Many people get intimidated by tests thinking that they are more than they really are. They are supposed to be a review of what you have already learned in your class. Having confidence in yourself and studying well can help you do well on them.
If you are concerned about your finances, keep track of everything you spend for two weeks. Write it all down in a notebook and then look over it to determine what most of your money is being spent on. This can help you to prioritize if you need to. Do this periodically to make sure you remain vigilant about your finances.
If you are unsure about which major to choose, use your first two years of college to take a wide variety of courses in addition to your core courses. You may find yourself interested in things you might otherwise never have considered. An eclectic course of study gives you greater insight into possible career choices.
Do more than take electives to broaden your horizons
Get involved with extracurricular activities on campus. Get a job or join a student organization. It’s likely that your college has numerous activities going on every single day. To encourage this form of experimentation, set a goal of trying at least one new activity every week.
You can meet lots of people by taking advantage of orientation social events. Heading off to a college where you know no one can be a daunting and isolating experience. Making friends will help you transition to college living.
Hunt for scholarships and keep hunting for scholarships. Do this even after you start college. There might be financial assistance possibilities that you do not discover until on campus. There might also be new opportunities that arise in your sophomore years and later, so always keep your eyes open for help.
Go shopping for essentials about a month before you go away to school. Get everything you think you need, and then you will have time to think about things you might have needed and have time to go to the store to pick them up before you leave. Early preparation is the key!
These tips should help a student avoid some of the pitfalls that afflict new college students. College life is one of the important milestones in a person’s life and not everyone makes the adjustment well. Use the tips you read here to make this challenging time both productive and enjoyable. Your future depends on it.