The new school year is just around the corner and college freshmen all around the country are in the process of making the daunting transition to college. To help out, we put together five tips for making freshmen year easier. The list below shares some advice that we wished we had received before going off to school, ranging from divvying up who is buying what to renting a car when you need a break.
1. Decide who is bringing what ahead of time with your roommate.
Thanks to technology, getting to know your roommate ahead of the big move-in day is easier than ever, especially when it comes to figuring out what stuff you need for your new living situation. Get a sense of each other’s style, interests and more via social media and use the time beforehand to determine what you need to buy. Not only will this help build a friendship, it’ll also ensure you don’t forget anything.
2. Get to know your RA.
One of the most important people you’ll meet during your first week of school is the RA, or resident advisor. These individuals, who are typically upperclassmen, plan different activities throughout semesters for their residents and are a great resource for getting to know the ins-and-outs of your university. Additionally, speaking from personal experience, they’re there to help mediate roommate issues should they arise.
3. Familiarize yourself with on-campus resources and activities.
Moving to a new location often involves a period of wishing you were somewhere more familiar, which can lead to feeling anxious and depressed. A way to overcome this is to get involved on campus and begin cultivating a new community of friends, be it people you meet through classes or extracurriculars. Check out your college’s student life website and social media accounts for what’s going on – there’s likely no shortage of stuff to do.
4. Set realistic daily goals.
For many freshmen, their first year of school feels overwhelming when it comes to studying – hour-long lectures, labs, study groups, tight deadlines – the list goes on. Keep burnout at bay by practicing a bit of time management and routine setting. One approach to this is to write down a daily to-do list of 4-5 items you want to accomplish, big and small, and assign time slots to them that work for your schedule. This will help keep you focused and relaxed, particularly during the crazier times in a semester, like finals week.
5. Make time for fun.
In addition to learning time management, freshmen year of college is a great opportunity to begin understanding what things bring you joy and how to budget time for them amid a busy schedule. Definitely begin with finding activities on campus, as they’re usually inexpensive and tailored to students, but we also recommend checking out what’s happening locally or regionally. Need help getting to one of these off-campus events? We can help since we rent to drivers younger than 25!