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Guide: Top 5 ways for College Freshman to Succeed

College is such a little word with so much meaning behind it. You can plan for months and even years ahead to be prepared for your first day, but in reality, you can’t really be prepared for college until you’re in it.

Here are the top five tips for college freshmen that can lead to success:

1. Don’t Procrastinate

It can be hard adjusting back into the school scene after an adventure-filled summer. It is even harder to get adjusted to an entirely new school where you do not know anyone.

However, getting your assignments finished as soon as possible is more beneficial than you think. It not only frees up some time for you in the future, but it also keeps you from stressing about the schoolwork you need to do.

2. Go to Class

Now that you are on your own and have total control over whether you get to sleep in, it’s tempting to miss class. It is especially tempting to sleep in instead of going to an 8 a.m. class.

Don’t skip class.

Not only will you miss notes that you might need on a test, but you could potentially miss other important information.

“If you do take an 8 a.m. class, make sure all your classes line up behind that class,” Shanya Jackson, senior English major, said. “That way you won’t be tempted to go home to nap and risk missing any of your other classes.”

3. Buy a Planner

As silly as it sounds, planners are a great way to keep you organized and on top of all your assignments. If you buy a planner, you do not have to keep checking your syllabus or logging into Blazeview just to see when your stuff is due.

You can also use your planner for other stuff like work assignments (if you have a job) and events that are coming up in your calendar.

4. Make Time to Study

A lot of people do not believe in studying, and that is okay. However, college classes are going to be completely different than the high school classes that you are used to.

Not to mention studying does not have to be boring. You could start study groups with your friends where you create flashcards or PowerPoints.

If you prefer studying alone, you could break up the study time into timed intervals with much-needed snack breaks.

5. Be Open

Going into a new school can be scary. Being around new people can be even scarier.

“You never know who or what relationship you might establish with someone,” Paige Thompson, junior exercise physiology major, said.

Without even knowing, you could create a few lifelong friendships just by saying hello and being kind to someone.

There are plenty of opportunities out in the world of college. You just have to be open enough to explore them.

Fear and anxiety are the two main emotions that come to mind whenever entering the college world. Throwing COVID-19 into the mix may make it a little harder to get adjusted faster than usual, but once you get a basic understanding of how college life works, you’re set for the next four years.

Written by Baylee Davis, staff reporter. Photo courtesy of The Spectator.

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One comment

  1. SwedishFishFan2013

    Hello again, VSU Spectator.

    I apologize for my absence in the comment sections of your articles for the past several months, but it seems your comments sections are as lively as ever without me (*hearty laugh*)! I hope you can forgive my leave as I was being detained by Swedish police on charges of corporate espionage. However, after performing a blood ritual and signing an NDA with a second party that shall not be named, I am relieved to say that the charges have been dropped. I am once again, back in the good ol’ US of A, enjoying my favorite treats and frequent Spectator updates. I’ve so much catching up to do!

    This article is just lovely. I agree with all of the items in this article. However, I hope you’ll allow me to add my own helpful tips as well.

    6. Have a snack while you study. As you all know, I enjoy the classic red flavor of Swedish Fish, but other people might have different snack preferences, such as pretzels, Tropical Swedish Fish, animal crackers, Swedish Fish Marshmallows, cheese crackers, Swedish Fish Tails, saltines, Swedish Fish Assorted, or even gum. Having a little something to eat while I work keeps me from cooking or making a meal to procrastinate. However, be sure to eat a healthy meal at some point, and don’t forget to drink water while you’re at it.

    7. Stay Hydrated. We have water fountains everywhere, please use them. If you’d like to know your daily recommended intake, a general rule is to take your weight (in pounds), divide that by 2, and that is the number of fluid oz you should be drinking. I find that carrying around a water bottle wherever I go aids me in reaching the recommended amount. Another general rule you can go by is the 8×8 rule, where you drink 8 cups of 8 fluid oz throughout the day. Keep in mind that you may need to raise this amount depending on your diet, temperature, physical activity, weight, etc. Do your best to drink water as opposed to caffeinated drinks like coffee and tea or sugary drinks like juice, sports drinks, and soda.

    8. Meet People and Talk to your teachers. Not only will this be helpful in networking and securing academic recommendations in the future, but building a community to help you through the tough times and elevate the good times is great for helping manage your mental health.

    9. Don’t rush into a relationship. This was a mistake that I made during my freshman year of college, despite others’ warnings. While my time with my dear Blenda was wonderful at first, it soon became rather volatile. She frequently disrespected my Swedish Fish-based lifestyle, and it was the cause of numerous arguments. While I deeply cared for her, there was only so much Swedish Fish slander I could bear to witness. It was simultaneously the best and worst three weeks of my life. Because of my heartbreak, I received a poor grade on my midterms.

    I hope you, dear reader, see the wisdom in these tips as well. I hope you all have a lovely first year.

    Yours truly,

    Barry Lingon (SwedishFishFan2013)

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