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A Freshman's Guide to Success in College: How to Survive and Thrive

On education
On Campus
Preparing yourself
Study Abroad
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Congratulations on starting your college journey! Your freshman year can be exciting, challenging, and even overwhelming at times. However, with the right mindset and a bit of guidance, you can not only survive your first year in college but thrive in it! In this Educatly guide, we will share with you the key pillars to surviving and thriving in college.

 

1. Choose the Right Program

It all starts with selecting the appropriate program, as it is paramount for achieving success in college. It is advisable for students to opt for a program that corresponds with their academic interests and career objectives. To identify the most suitable program, students should take into account the following guidelines:

 

  1. 1) Thoroughly investigate various programs and their prerequisites.
  2.  
  3. 2) Consult academic advisors, professors, alumni, and educational counsellors for advice.
  4.  
  5. 3) Assess alternatives: Evaluate different programs based on their academic content, prerequisites, and professional prospects.
  6.  
  7. 4) Reflect on personal preferences, including location, campus atmosphere, and extracurricular activities. 

 

2. Register for Classes

The first step in your college journey is to register for classes, which can be confusing and overwhelming, especially for freshmen. Here are some tips to make the process easier:

 

 

  1. 1) Meet with your academic advisor to discuss your schedule and the classes you must take to fulfil your degree requirements.
  2.  
  3. 2) Create a plan for your schedule that aligns with your goals and preferences.
  4.  
  5. 3) Use resources like Rate My Professors to find the best professors for the courses you want to take.
  6.  
  7. 4) Register for classes as soon as possible to ensure you get the classes you need.

 

3. Get Adjusted to Dorm Life

Living in a dorm can be a new and challenging experience. Here are some tips to help you get started:

 

  1. 1) Get to know your roommate(s) and communicate openly with them.
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  3. 2) Set boundaries and establish expectations for your living arrangements.
  4.  
  5. 3) Get involved in dorm activities to meet new people and make friends.
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  7. 4) Keep your living space clean and organized to avoid stress and clutter.

 

4. Stay Focused

Staying focused while studying is crucial for academic success. Here’s how you can do it:

 

  1. 1) Eliminate distractions like social media and email notifications.
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  3. 2) Create a study schedule that includes breaks and rewards.
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  5. 3) Use the Pomodoro technique to break your study time into manageable intervals.
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  7. 4) Study in a quiet and comfortable environment.

 

5. Get Involved in Extracurricular Activities

Extracurricular activities are a great way to make friends, explore your interests, and build your resume. Do you need help finding out how you can become involved? Here are some tips to help you:

 

 

  1. 1) Attend club fairs and explore the different organizations available on campus.
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  3. 2) Join clubs and organizations that align with your interests and passions.
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  5. 3) Attend events and activities hosted by clubs to meet new people.
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  7. 4) Take on leadership roles in clubs to build your skills and experience.

 

6. Approach College Staff The Right Way

College staff can be an invaluable resource for academic and personal support. Here are some tips to help you approach college staff:

 

  1. 1) Introduce yourself and be respectful.
  2.  
  3. 2) Be prepared with specific questions or concerns.
  4.  
  5. 3) Attend office hours and seek out help when needed.
  6.  
  7. 4) Build relationships with staff members for future reference and support.

 

7. Balance Studying and Social Life

Balancing academics and social life is crucial for your mental and emotional well-being. Follow these steps to help you organize:

 

  1. 1) Prioritize your studies and set aside dedicated study time.
  2.  
  3. 2) Schedule social activities and events in advance to avoid conflicts.
  4.  
  5. 3) Create a balance between academic and social activities.
  6.  
  7. 4) Use social activities as a reward for completing your academic goals.

 

8. Know How to Stay Safe on a College Campus

Staying safe on campus is essential for your well-being. Here are some tips to help you:

 

 

  1. 1) Stay aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts.
  2.  
  3. 2) Use the buddy system when walking on campus at night.
  4.  
  5. 3) Know the locations of emergency phones and safe zones.
  6.  
  7. 4) Report any suspicious activity to campus security or law enforcement immediately.

 

9. Organize Your Financials

Managing your finances in college can be challenging. Follow this guide to organize your financials better:

 

  1. 1) Create a budget and track your expenses.
  2.  
  3. 2) Avoid unnecessary spending and prioritize your needs over your wants.
  4.  
  5. 3) Apply for scholarships and financial aid to reduce your financial burden.
  6.  
  7. 4) Use resources like financial aid offices and budgeting tools to help you stay on track.

 

Using these 9 pillars, you can be sure you'll make the most out of your freshman year. But don't be shy to ask for help or more tips and tricks on studying abroad. Educatly has 200+ blogs about studying abroad, different majors and destinations that you can read to navigate your college years.

 

If you ever need to talk to an educational counsellor, you can be sure we're here for you. Simply sign up to Educatly and update your profile and our counsellors will contact you and help you with any of your needs.

 

Don't forget to follow Educatly for more on studying abroad and education.

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