Orientations don’t tell you everything about college. They want you to attend their college, so they make it seem as enjoyable as possible. Well, it’s not the easiest when you actually start attending school. Let me give you some tips so that you can go into college with an understanding that it isn’t just about parties.
College food is not always the best – It’s true that you can eat at any time that the dining halls are open, but it may not be the best. Sometimes it can get annoying when specific dining halls serve the same hamburgers, hot dogs, and pizza all the time. (Yeah, it can get like that sometimes.) During my freshmen orientation, the orientation leaders made it seem like we would have chicken, mac and cheese, and broccoli. The food was excellent, so I knew I was going to enjoy the food here.
There is a place on my campus where they serve nearly the same thing every week. During my sophomore year, I grew tired of the same meals. I began to cook my own food in my apartment style dorm. There are times where they have Mac and Cheese night, and they serve several ways of mac and cheese. We have a Steak and Shrimp Night and Fried Chicken Fridays here. I attend those events when I don’t mind standing in line.
Now don’t get me wrong, some colleges have options for everything from Taco Bell to Burger King. I just don’t get that luxury here. The only fast food franchise on my campus is Chick-Fil-A, and the rest is dining halls. The food isn’t terrible, but it could be better.
Your roommate may not always be your best friend -Everybody does not get that lovely roommate that wants to get to know you. I surely didn’t gain a best friend from a roommate. I had the worst roommate during the first half of my freshmen year and my roommate during the second half was so much better. She didn’t become my best friend though.
During my sophomore year, I had my own room, but I shared the space with two other people. One of my roommates was crazy, and she didn’t like me so we wouldn’t have become best friends. My other roommate that was my roommate this past semester (obviously I enjoyed her the first time) was pretty fun to be around. Everybody has a different experience with roommates so you may gain a best friend after being their roommate.
You can drop classes in college – If you are having a tough time in a class or the teacher sounds unreasonable, please don’t be afraid to drop a class. You don’t want to hurt your GPA because you were scared to end the course. Don’t drop classes too much, but please get out when you feel that the teacher won’t work with you. If that class is a requirement, retake the course with a different teacher. Most of the time that works! I dropped classes twice since I’ve been in college and it’s been beneficial for me.
Avoid 8 am classes (if necessary) – It’s not easy getting up at 6am in college. I know that you think you may be used to it in high school, but it is entirely different in college. I always feel groggy when getting up at 6am for an 8 o’clock class. I’m never focused all the way and I just mentally want to go back to bed. Sometimes you cannot control taking an 8am for your freshman year. When you become an upperclassman, it depends on what you’re majoring in if you will have 8am classes. My major is Graphic Design, and my 2018 fall semester will be the first time that I will escape an 8am class. Thank You, God! Try to start your classes at 11 (at the least). Thank me later.
Spreading your classes out is a thing in college – “What do you mean?” What I am saying is that you can have 9am-10:50am and then take a break for an hour or two. Take another class from 1:40 to 2:55p and then your last class from 3:30 to 4:25p. I enjoy having spaced out courses to relax mentally from my previous class session. I wasn’t able to have that luxury during the spring semester of my junior year. It felt like I was in high school again. On Mondays and Wednesdays, I would start my day at 6am and end my day at 6pm. Well, that’s more than high school hours, but you get my drift.
You will have all nighters – So, people do not talk about this one which makes you guys think that college is so fun. It is not fun when you find yourself up at 4am trying to finish a project, and you have to get up at 8am for the class. It is not fun to forget that you had a project due because of poor planning. That will happen to you once or more while you are in college. I will talk about how to plan in my later posts so you won’t have an all-nighter.
If you do not plan to party, you are not lame – Listen! There are a handful of people that do not party. I didn’t really know that until I would hear people around campus say that they don’t party. Parties are not the only way to socialize with people, so don’t let upperclassmen brainwash you! I’m going into my last year of college, I haven’t partied ever, and I still was able to socialize. If you plan to party, don’t judge people that don’t party. Respect their decision. A lot of people looked at me funny or told me “College is for partying. You should’ve gone to a Christian school.” I’m still surviving, and I even learned some things without partying.
College is stressful – You thought high school was stressful? College is the beginning of stress. You could possibly have 3 test and 2 papers due in one week. Balancing classes, schoolwork, and work(if nec.) can become difficult to juggle. You will have to learn how to study for multiple tests during the week and learn about multitasking. (I could give you some tips if you want!) It wouldn’t be college without stress, but don’t worry you’re going to be okay.
There’s not enough time in the day – There’s always something to do in college, and it just seems like you can’t get everything done. During the weekday, you’re busy with classes until most likely 6pm. If you take courses after 6pm, you’re not done until 8pm, but you still have to study for a test and do your Geography homework before it is due. It is important to use your free time wisely when you are busy all week.
You can’t catch a break – You’re busy during the week with school, work, and clubs. During the weekend, you want to sleep all day, but you know you have to study and do your homework. If you’re an art/graphic design major, you have to work on your drawings/projects. Please always take care of your mental health whether you have a break for five minutes. Do not burn yourself out during the first year. Even when it seems like you cannot catch a break, allow yourself to at least spend 30 minutes to relax from anything school related.
Listen, college isn’t everything that people make it seem. College is fun, but there are some consequences to it. I just wanted to share the reality of college. If you’ve been in college, share some other facts of college that I didn’t write in the post!
Proverbs 27:2 KJV – Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.