Tips and Tricks for Transitioning to College
A guest blog post written by Brianna Gadaleta.
To the high school seniors, congratulations! You’ve escaped the shackles of the high school and are now ready to dive into the college lifestyle. It may seem scary, living on your own, the rigor of classes, and meeting new people; but know you aren’t alone. Every big, intimidating senior was once a wee little freshman like yourself, and they got through the year, just like you can! You’re going to hit some bumps in the road throughout your transition, but hopefully these tips and tricks can help you navigate the wild ride that is college.
I know with all the fun that comes along with college you may forget the reason why you’re there. A big adjustment is the asperity of school work, and the expectations of professors. That's why taking advantage of office hours whenever possible is beneficial to building your relationship, and can help your grades out. Professors like to know that their students are invested in the class; going in and talking to them or asking questions about the material shows you're actively engaged, and gives you extra brownie points because they see the effort you’re putting in. And some professors just want to get to know you and create a bond, which is helpful in the long run for letters of recommendation you may need in the future.
A key difference between your high school life and your college life is the new large sums of time that you now have. At first, it's going to feel tempting to use the time to watch Netflix, sleep or hang out with friends. However, you should utilize your time wisely, in an effort to maximize your time at college. School work can be a lot sometimes, and you definitely don’t want it to be taking up all that freedom. Make schedules if you must to stay on top of all your responsibilities, after all college is a time to explore more than just classes, become involved in clubs, volunteering, the community, jobs and many other things! By planning your time according, you can have time to do all the things you enjoy while also being a full time college student.
To most, living without family members, guardians or any other type of situation is unfamiliar and intimidating. It also doesn’t help that the expectation that college will be the best time of your life. If you don’t feel that right away, that's totally natural! It’s a huge change, that is uncomfortable, scary and weird at points, especially during the first few months. It may seem like you’re the only freshman that feels homesick, but there are guaranteed other students in your class that feel this way. Homesickness is normal, so don’t be ashamed of the feelings of anxiety that may pop up once in a while. A great way to deal with this is talking to upperclassmen, and even better is connecting with other freshmen that feel this way, you are all in the same shoes, and you can help each other through it.