Hello to all of you incoming students! I’m so excited to be able to help and support the new Bengals on the beginning of this wonderful journey, and hopefully throughout it as well!

My name is Katie Beck, and I’m a sophomore studying Psychology on the Idaho Falls outreach campus. Since I live in Idaho Falls, the outreach campus is more convenient for me personally. I will be taking upper division classes on the main campus, though, and I am very excited for when that time comes! For those of you planning on attending one of the outreach campuses, I want you to know that all of the resources and events in Pocatello are open to you! That also goes for those of you on Pocatello. ISU wants their students to succeed and enjoy their time in college, so if you see any event that you want to attend on another campus, feel free to join in! You could also plan a similar event on your campus! That brings me to my next point.

GSA-IF at Fall 2015 Welcome Week!
Gender Straight Alliance at Welcome Week!

I am the coordinator for the New Student Orientation on the Idaho Falls campus. Prior to joining the NSO team this year, I was a student leader in the Idaho Falls orientation for two semesters. In addition to being an NSO Coordinator, I am the ASISU Vice President for Idaho Falls, a peer advisor, student worker in the financial aid office, the president and co-founder of the Gay Straight Alliance of Idaho Falls, and the secretary of the Performing Arts Club. Now, don’t let all of these titles intimidate you! I’m telling you about them so you realize the many different places and ways you can be involved with at ISU. Your other NSO leaders are actively involved (which I’m sure you read!) in still more areas. You can be involved as much or as little as you want, but I believe that involvement is key to the enjoyment of your university experience. Join a club in an area that interests you or that’s related to your chosen career, apply to be on the Student Activities Board or Union Program Council to plan campus wide events, run for your student government – the Associated Students of Idaho State University, become a peer advisor or instructor, even apply to be an NSO coordinator! This list is by no means exhaustive, but my point is to find something to connect you to campus besides classwork. You will make more friends, have a built in stress reliever, and better realize how truly amazing it is to be a Bengal! As a bonus, most of it looks great on a résumé.

Me, Benny, and a friend at a food drive for Benny's Pantry
A friend and I at a food drive for Benny’s Pantry! 

My last piece of advice will naturally come to be if you are involved, but is definitely possible even if you take the minimalist approach. Make connections! This seems simple, but it could mean the difference between a successful and stressful semester. The main three I suggest to be a priority are these:

  • Talk to your instructors, especially (but not limited to) the ones in your chosen major. They will be the ones who know about internships and will give you letters of recommendations for anything you can think of.
  • Meet with financial aid and your academic advisor at least once a semester, even if you don’t think it’s necessary. It is so very easy to get off track in college when requirements are constantly changing.
  • Utilize the Student Success Center; tutoring is FREE. Most students (including myself) need help in the classroom at some point, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of.

Getting to know these people and all of your other resources is going make it much easier for you to approach someone when you are struggling or when you are looking for job and scholarship opportunities.

You’ve heard this before, and you’ll hear it many more times: HAVE FUN IN COLLEGE! And be sure to get the inside scoop on New Student Orientation by following us on social media!

Twitter: @ISUOrientation
Instagram: isuorientation
Facebook: facebook.com/isunso