Categories: School

Freshman Guide To Life on the Kent State Campus

With summer break near its end and fall semester on the horizon, you may be nervous about moving into your new home at Kent State University. The dorms are getting cleaned and prepped, as you’re spending a fortune on bedding, school supplies, and decorations. But how on earth are you going to actually LIVE by yourself in this new place? Keep reading for ten tips every freshman needs to hear for life on the Kent State campus.

1. Make friends fast.

Whether you meet your new bestie at Welcome Weekend or in your chemistry lab, having friends is key to enjoying your time at Kent State- or any college away from home. This is perhaps the number one, most important rule I learned my freshman year. “But, how can I make close friends on such a huge campus?” It’s easier than you think. Some of the best ways to make new friends at a university (before classes even begin) is to make plans with someone you know from high school that is attending the same college, or visit and familiarize yourself with the campus ahead of time.

 

2. Pay attention to your meal plan.

It’s very easy to overspend on your food especially with so many options like Quaker Steak & Lube in the basement of the Student Center, and the grocery stores located in Prentice and Eastway. Thankfully, Kent Dining Services has a budget plan already mapped out for students that suggest a monetary limit per day. For example, a student on the standard meal plan spends around $18.00 a day. Let’s say you eat a bigger breakfast and smaller lunch. If you’re going to spend more in the morning, simply spend less in the afternoon so you don’t blow your budget.

3. Download KSU Mobile.

Download this free app from the app store to access everything you need to know around campus. It can verify your meal plan balance, keep track of your grades, and check which restaurants and cafeterias are still open when your stomach starts to growl. Seriously you need this app… it even lets you see your class schedule, the academic calendar, a TV channel guide, and the Kent State Fight Song! The app also features a GPS system which comes in handy for finding the halls where your classes are located.

4. Make your dorm feel like home.

If you’re like me, you have not experienced living away from home for long periods of time. College is exactly that. Prepare to spend a lot of time in your dorm room, typing up that essay and binge watching the latest season of Orange is the New Black. Talk to your roommate before you make any drastic changes, such as leaving your lights on all night so the other person can’t get any shut­eye. If you want to get along with your roommate, you might even plan to decorate the room together! Having a friend is key to feeling at home. Kent State became my home-­away-­from-­home. Make it yours, too. Check out some great decoration ideas here!

5. Exercise regularly at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center.

Rather than kicking off your shoes and flopping onto your bed to binge watch the aforementioned new season on Netflix after a long day of classes, slip on your Nikes and walk to the Student Recreation and Wellness Center. Regular exercise has been proven to be crucial for keeping a healthy state of mind. Benefits include maintenance of a healthy weight, stronger bones, a better mood (from the resulting release of serotonin), reduced stress, and a stronger immune system. Students here even study while riding a stationary bike! Whether you kick-box, lift weights, climb rock walls, or run on the treadmill, there are plenty of different ways to exercise your body after (or before) exercising your mind.

6. Don’t be afraid to make an appointment with University Health Services.

Your health matters not just physically, but mentally, too. If you start to feel under the weather, it’s best to make a cautionary appointment at the DeWeese Health Center. All you have to do is call the number supplied on Kent’s Health Center main page and make an appointment. Or, if the situation is more urgent, go straight to the DeWeese Health Center on Eastway Drive and the nurses will see you as soon as one is available. The on­scene pharmacy makes transferring prescriptions smooth. And face it, things can get rough in any unfamiliar situation.

7. Don’t be afraid to party.

It’s supposed to be the best four years of your life, right? This isn’t high school anymore. Most students design their schedules so they don’t have Friday classes, which means more time to study… or party. Especially around Welcome Weekend, there are tons of local parties including the ones sponsored by the university itself (no alcohol, of course), frat parties, and more downtown. Major tip: take a friend…a responsible friend. You will more than likely be walking, so wear the appropriate shoes. Go ahead and get a little crazy, have a little fun, and be social.

8. Ask for Tech Help when you need it.

Computer screen frozen? Printer gone bust? Tech Help at Kent State is here to save the day (or the ten-page essay due at 11:59 p.m.) With two locations, one at the College of Business Administration and one at Tri Towers Rotunda on the Koonce Hall side, Tech Help is available to all students. They offer services from virus and spyware removal to hardware installation and repair. Also, during orientation weekend, Tech Help is available to teach students how to install Microsoft programs like PowerPoint and Word Processor, free for all university students.

 

See Also

9. Actually study.

Oh, so college isn’t just about partying? You mean, I have to study?! Yes, you have to study. And worst yet, you have to study…wait for it…MATH! And more. Like writing. And science. Extra help for all of these subjects and more is available for tutoring on campus at multiple locations, including the Library, Tri Towers Rotunda, and the Center for Undergraduate Excellence. Tutoring is free, costing only your time and commitment to getting good grades. Study Skills Tutors are also available for help in note taking, test preparation, time management, and study aids. Various forms of tutoring are accessible all across campus. It never hurts to get a little help. College is worth the experience AND the degree.

10. Stay in touch with your family.

Call your mom. Call them all! I spent an hour or so of my free time calling family members and felt a lot less lonely and a lot less bored. Staying in touch with family and friends back home makes the stress of college much easier to endure. It’s nice to hear how things are going, what you’re missing, and then brag about your day to someone who doesn’t have the same Kent experience as you do.

 

What else do Kent State freshmen need to know for life on campus? Comment below and share this article with friends!

This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own!

Featured image: weheartit

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Kathryn Monsewicz

Kathryn Monsewicz is a journalism major at Kent State University. Her goal is to give readers stories they can see, feel, listen to and love. Her focus is in magazine journalism with the ultimate dream of becoming a traveling journalist.

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