Write everything down.

And I mean everything. One of the biggest mistakes I made as a freshman was not writing everything down consistently. I missed a bunch of important dates and even got close to turning in some assignments late. Using my agenda more consistently saved me my second semester.

Take advantage of your professors’ office hours and accommodation services provided.

Your professors in college are generally there help you and make sure you pass. They have office hours in place to answer questions, get you caught up if you had to miss class, or purely just to talk to you and give advice. Make sure to take advantage off these hours with thee professors in your specific major. The disability and accommodation services your school provides are there to benefit you. All you have to do is gone down and sign up for them. No one except your accommodation person, your professor, and you have to know. Having a plan in place can benefit you in the long run

Do not pack your entire closet.

Freshman dorm rooms are tiny and you are more than likely sharing that space with another person. Most rooms come with a closet, desk, chair, bed, and 3 drawer chest for each person. I brought way too many clothes from home, half of which I never wore and spent my money on new clothes. This brings me to my next point.

Spend your money wisely.

If you’re like me, you will have to support yourself during college. Make sure that you are saving your money and spending carefully. There were way too many times where I actually needed something and couldn’t afford it because I spent my money on clothes or some new pair of shoes to try and fit in. Most colleges have a free seminar on smart spending and saving. I definitely recommend going to it.

College is nothing like high school.

When you are in college, you are expected to get yourself up and ready for class. No one is going to make sure you get up in time, have your homework done, or have clean clothes. This all falls on you. Once your in college, you are considered an adult and everyone around you, especially your professors, will treat you like one. You will have to make decisions for yourself.

Read the syllabus.

This one should be self explanatory. If you don’t read your syllabus, then you will miss out on some important things including, test dates and how many classes you can miss due to absences. My freshman year, I missed a lot of class due to medical issues and because I didn’t use the accommodation services provided my 1st semester, my grades were docked. The next semester, I put a plan in place that has been used every year since.

It’s okay not to be okay.

This is possibly the most important thing and it took me 22 years to learn. If something is wrong, do not hold it in. Tell someone. Most campus have therapists available to you for free. They sign confidentiality contracts so they are not allowed to talk about what is said behind closed doors. If that isn’t an option for you, then go to a trusted friend, professor, or call home. No one is expecting you to be perfect. Mental health days are a thing and I have had a professor tell me to take one so that I can decompress and come back ready to go.

Kyasia B
CONTRIBUTOR