Are you headed to college soon? Or are you already in college and still apprehensive about how things are going to turn out?
The reality is that the transition from high school to college can be a bit difficult. It’s important that you know your goals beforehand and make plans to achieve those. There are many things you need to consider and be careful about.
Nevertheless, college life should be fun and will ultimately help you shape your career. Here are 10 tips every college student should know.
1. Budget! budget! budget!
Be financially literate. Know your constraints beforehand with respect to money.
If required, start keeping a record of all your savings and expenditures. Stop spending on things you don’t need. Buy your books and supplies only if it is very necessary. Try taking things from library or rent them. It will save a lot of money and effort in case you decide later on to drop a class.
There is a subtle difference between needing and wanting.
Cut down on your credit cards, if you are an avowed shopaholic.
If you wish to establish a credit history, make a small purchase regularly using your account number.
Start saving regularly. Trust me, these small savings will make a huge difference. If you really need some extra money to sustain yourself, consider a part time job.
2. Time management.
Time management is very crucial. Manage your time well between your classes, part-time job (perhaps!) and other extra curricular activities. Be disciplined in classrooms.Take notes. Participate in discussions. You will thank yourself later on.
Before committing to anything, make sure that you have sometime everyday to unwind. Otherwise, all the pressure and stress will catch up to you soon. And you definitely don’t need that.
3. The system is not your enemy!
Remember this always.
Don’t try to work against your college authorities and professors however much you are tempted. Talk to them in case there is any problem or misunderstanding. Be cordial even if in reality, the rebel in you wants to paint the city red. This will pay off in the long run.
4. People always talk. You have to learn to ignore them!
It’s very important to have a social life. Getting along with roommates and batch mates will help you not only adjust in the new environment but also to meet new people and develop lasting relationships.
You create memories and go through various experiences with people you meet in college. At the same time, don’t get bothered by unnecessary rumors.
Some people tend to take comments to heart. It would be advisable to avoid that. Make sure that you know your limits when it comes to having a social life.
5. Internships and hiring.
Plan on getting an internship if you don’t have one already. Practical experience always looks good on a resume. You will be one step ahead of your peers when you start job hunting after you graduate.
6. Confused about a major?
Still not sure if you want to continue in the same major as you entered in the college? Do not worry. You can change it.
For instance, some engineering colleges allow this change after a year of study. As a freshman, you should take your time to explore and think carefully about the possibilities and then make a decision regarding the department you want to major in.
Take different classes to discover new areas of interests. You might surprise yourself.
7. Your adviser is there to help.
Usually colleges make every effort to initially match students with a faculty adviser who is in their area of interest. But, you can match yourself with an adviser of your choice later on if you feel that you want to learn more from him/her.
Get to know the facilities provided by your college for your research work.
If you need some tutorial/remedial classes outside the classroom, ask around if those are available or can be arranged. In short, try to have knowledge about every program which is running at the college which might help you.
9. Set goals.
College is where the most mind opening learning of your life will happen. It is important to set clear goals for each class you wish to take. Try to take at least one extra class per semester. At the same time, do not over burden yourself.
10. Stay healthy!
This tip is old school. Research says that physical exercises result in increased blood flow to the brain which indirectly improves mood and sleep; reduces stress and anxiety. Exercising a few hours every week will help you increase alertness and attentiveness which leads to faster learning. It’s very important that you eat right, exercise regularly and stay fit.
So, hope you enjoy your journey in college!
Featured photo credit: Addy Abdullah via flickr.com