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What College Freshmen Can Learn From Upperclassmen

Incoming freshmen face many unexpected challenges as well as new opportunities. However, being aware of those uncertainties beforehand can help students prepare themselves to handle school successfully. Freshmen should consider the following tips that many upperclassmen wished they knew when they first started college.

tips for college freshman

Connect with Your Professors

Building relationships with your professors can bring you many benefits. First, you'll be able to get additional help when needed. Second, you'll learn firsthand of any events and organizations available on-campus and off-campus that might interest you. Many professors serve as chairs and advisors for clubs, groups and associations that you could join to network with faculty members and other students. Third, you'll eventually need recommendation letters from professors when applying for scholarships, jobs, and even graduate school. Therefore, it's important to get to know a few professors within your field who are able to speak highly of your work ethic and character.

Learn about Financial Aid

Take the time to figure out the total amount of your college expenses, your current financial status and what financial resources are available to you in order to pay for college without accumulating too much debt. You should also research scholarships and work study opportunities and apply to as many as possible to take advantage of the potential monetary benefits.

Do Your Homework

College differs greatly from high school, since you'll be the only one responsible for completing your homework, and you won't have parents and teachers constantly reminding you about it. You'll be expected to hold yourself accountable for your coursework. It's important to understand that missing even one assignment can greatly affect you, because most classes only meet once or twice per week. If your homework is to review for an upcoming exam, make sure you do so! Reviewing early will give you ample time to email your professor for any necessary clarification or questions before the exam date.

Get Involved in Extracurricular Activities

Joining a club, organization, sports team, or even the student council has many advantages. First, you'll be able to enhance your leadership skills, alongside your time management and social skills. Second, you'll get an opportunity to make new friends and represent your school on a larger scale. Third, you'll gain valuable experience that you can put on your resume, such as team leading, mentoring, tutoring, sportsmanship, and communication skills. Fourth, you'll be able to impact others by putting your strengths to work. And finally, you'll be having fun and reducing your stress levels.

One thing upperclassmen may not be doing that freshman should is visiting the campus career center.


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