Guess who’s back, back again?
It’s almost time for you to join us at Idaho State! Now if you’re anything like I was going into college, you’ve probably Googled articles like, “how to make the most of freshmen year,” or “surviving college 101.” Well, no need to keep Googling! I am here to share some advice and tips on making your time at ISU the best years of your life.
First things first: it’s okay to be scared. College is a completely new experience, full of adventure, uncertainty, fun and growth. Even though it’ll be the best time of your life, it’ll also be pretty difficult- emotionally, academically and even financially. Anyone who tries to tell you college is easy is either lying to you or didn’t really make the most of their experience.
Second piece of advice? STOP BEING SCARED! “But, Dez, you just said it’s okay to be scared.” Yeah, I know, but just because college seems scary because of so many unknown things, that doesn’t mean you have to fear the opportunities that ISU holds. Yes, there will be times when you feel like you’re all alone and feel overwhelmed with the concern that you have absolutely no idea what you’re doing, but, trust me when I say we’ve all been there.
I remember when I was a first year, I believed that it was up to me and me alone to figure out everything in this new world: my major, my classes, my meal plan, blah blah blah. Admitting to people that I didn’t know what I was doing felt like it would be weak, and aren’t adults supposed to know what they’re doing?
After struggling and stressing, I quickly realized that even though college was something I ultimately needed to figure out, there was an abundance of people who knew what they were doing and more than happy to help me learn. More importantly, I learned that being an adult doesn’t mean having all of the answers all the time, and that is okay! However, instead of making your life harder, just ask questions! If you’re struggling in class, ASK your professor, or get a tutor! If you don’t know about your major, ASK your advisor. The only person you hurt by not asking for help is yourself.
Now, one of the things you’ll constantly hear is that college is a place where you find your “forever friends.” The easiest way to do find them to get involved! There are literally hundreds of clubs on campus. I met some of my future bridesmaids by going through sorority recruitment and becoming a part of the Greek community (#GoGreek). Not only did I gain 100,000+ sisters around the nation, but there’s an entire community cheering me on.
Even if you don’t feel like joining a club right away, go to events on campus. Student Activities Board (SAB) and Union Program Council (UPC) are ALWAYS planning awesome events! Most of the time, there’s also free stuff involved, and let’s be real: Who doesn’t like free stuff? TRUST, when I say that being involved will lead you to making friends, but it will help you boost your resume too, which may get you that dream job after graduation. It’s a win-win!
Pretty soon you will have a new found freedom. You can do whatever you want, whenever, and, eventually, you’ll learn that the temptation to skip class is real. However, it’s been researched that students who go to class do so much better than those who don’t. Even though college is fun, it’s important to remember why we’re here. All of us are paying thousands of dollars to get an education, so don’t waste that opportunity. Go to class, take notes, talk to your professors, this will only be beneficial, especially, when you need letters of recommendation for scholarships and internships!
You will have all of the freedom and opportunities in the world, but you will also have to learn to say no. College is a delicate balance of work, class, friends, relationships, and whatever else you decide to engage in. You will need to prioritize all of these and learn when you can or can’t go to something. Don’t let fear of missing out lead you to skipping homework to hang with your new homies. On the other hand, don’t let one homework assignment that’s due next week let you miss an opportunity of a lifetime. Decide what YOU need to get done, and stick to it!
Finally, my most important piece of advice is have fun! Four years seems like a long time, but time flies when you’re having the time of your life. Take ridiculous amounts of pictures because, before you know it, they’ll be your favorite memories from years ago. Don’t stress out too much, and forget about high school. College is a fresh start and the time for you to become the person you want to be.
Feel free to reach out, and ask me any questions you may have! I am more than happy to help you find your home here at Idaho State.
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