The first quarter or semester of college can be exciting but also scary. You’re moving into a new environment, surrounded by people you don’t know, and your classes are totally different from high school. You might get a chance to ditch getting up early since you’re essentially picking your own class schedule and you likely have all the food you could need via dining halls, but you’re also not yet adjusted to the college lifestyle. It is easy to be overwhelmed the first quarter or semester, and it’s no surprise many students struggle their entire first year.
But the first semester or quarter doesn’t have to be horrible. If you come prepared and are willing to adapt, you can minimize the stress brought on by college life. From knowing what to expect from professors to building a social life, there are many ways you can make college a little easier. Your first quarter or semester likely won’t be a breeze, but it doesn’t have to be a nightmare either. Here’s how to survive your first semester of college.
Don’t Just Go To Class, Participate
You’ve likely been told before going to class in college is important. It is, attendance matters and even if it doesn’t the material certainly will. But unless you’re a super genius, going to class is just the start for succeeding in a class. Many professors these days have participation grades, meaning you’ll need to speak up in class if you want to get an A.
But even if your professor doesn’t grade on participation, you should still be involved in your class. Don’t be afraid to ask questions in class, and if you have the time, introduce yourself to the professor. If you’re struggling, always go to office hours. They might seem silly, but they can actually be a lifesaver. Plus, they show your professor that you care and that might mean a lot in how they see you as a student.
Join A Club Or Something Similar
Finding a group of friends can really make college a lot easier. One easy way to make friends is to get involved outside of class. There are usually plenty of clubs you can join, from community service oriented ones to special interest groups like board games or cooking. Who knows, you might even learn a new skill or two.
If you’re not keen on joining a club and want something more active, consider participating in an intramural, where you’ll play sports on a casual level. Or if Greek Life is a thing, consider rushing. Even if you decide the experience isn’t for you, rush is a great way to make friends. Whatever way you choose to get involved, you’ll likely find a good group of people to hang out with. It can make college a lot less stressful when you have friends who support you!
Don’t Party Too Hard
We know, when you go off to college it is exciting because you’re finally on your own. And with that, comes the chance to party often very easily thanks to college being a prime place for it. It can be easy however to go to far and push your limits, especially if you lived a rather mundane high school life.
Furthermore, definitely don’t feel pressured to do anything you don’t want to or to drink. Heck, even if partying is not your thing, that’s okay. You can still find plenty of fun things to do in college even if you don’t want to party.
Yeah studying sucks, but you gotta do it. It’s important to study a lot in college, as it helps you retain the material. Plus, you’ll do way better on your tests.
Oh, and that doesn’t mean pulling all-nighters. Save yourself the stress and sleep exhaustion and set up a daily studying schedule so you’re never unprepared for a test or paper. Better yet, find a good studying spot too. It’ll make studying easier.