If only I had known…
As a college junior with two years under my belt, I’ve learned a lot at my big, public university. But when I think back to the beginning of my freshman year, my face starts to redden in embarrassment. It might be enjoyable for upperclassmen to poke fun at these fledgling college students, but I thought it would be more productive — and just plain nicer — to give those freshman a few tips that probably apply on any college campus. So listen up, class of 2014, here are the top five things I wish I had known my freshman year:
1. Don’t date anyone on your hall.
Coed dorms are fun and you get to meet a lot of great people, but don’t date or hook up with anyone on your hall. The awkwardness that ensues when the break ups (inevitably) occur is out-of-this-world. You not only feel uncomfortable, the entire floor does. If you find someone a floor above, fine, but avoid that door a couple down — your weak transitional state just can’t handle it.
2. First day of class preparedness.
You don’t need to bring every textbook to every class the entire semester (you’ll have back problems by the second week of school), but you definitely need to show up on the first day of class with a notebook, a pen and at least knowing what class you’re in. Don’t show up empty handed, but don’t bring your entire book list either. If it rains or a pen leaks in your bag, the resale value on those $500 books goes way down.
3. Don’t go looking for parties.
My sorority sisters and I often stare out our living room window and watch all the freshman parade around the Greek houses looking for parties. It’s super entertaining now, but my freshman year I was a member of those hordes. You will not be able to sniff out a party from the street. Wait for rumors of parties or go with the girl whose brother’s a senior and his friends are having one. Don’t miss out on the back-to-school fun, enjoy the college madness, but don’t wander around staring into my sorority house window.
4. Obey these need-to-know wardrobe rules:
Contrary to popular belief, most normal college students do not wander into class in their pajamas. Girls, don’t wear heels to class unless you have some sort of presentation (and even then you should carry them in your bag), you will fall trekking across your university. If you received any special T-shirt at your orientation or when you moved into your dorm don’t wear them anywhere else that you don’t want to be labeled as a freshman. It’s like wearing a big sign that says: “I’m 18.”
5. Don’t screw up your relationship with the roommate
This may be cliché advice, but it rings true. Lay out some ground rules for the room and respect them. Don’t “sexile” your roommate, don’t steal their food or clothes and just be polite! If you and your roommate are just not getting along, talk to him, your R.A. (resident assistant) or request a room change. I had a terrible roommate situation my freshman year, and it made my semester awful. Your dorm room is your home and you don’t want to come home to someone who hates your guts or you despise — trust me, it’s possible.
Are you an upperclassman? What important life lessons do you wish you had known freshman year?
Add your tips to the comments so these young souls can have at least a chance on a leg up at being an experienced, cool — and happy — college student.
Powered by Facebook Comments