I remember my first day of college like it was yesterday. I went to junior college and the transferred to a four year university. I had a scholarship at my junior college and it covered all of my general classes. Which was cool. It was a completely different experience from my four year university experience.
Except that at the very core, it was exactly the same. College can be so much fun. College can be hell. College is what you make it, but your experience is impacted by those around you.
I didn’t have the traditional, typical college experience. I didn’t party hard, rush sororities, or join any clubs or teams. But that was my choice. I don’t regret it and I encourage you to pick your own path.
Be You :: I’m sure you hear this everywhere, but the single most important thing I figured out in college was not to give two shits about what I was supposed to be doing, wearing, or saying and did what I wanted. I took naps in the student center. I wore the same hoodie five days in a row once because it was the only thing that was warm without being too warm ( I swear I washed it . . . some). I gave my honest opinion in class and didn’t worry about what the rest of the students thought. I started wearing clothes I loved and embraced me. It was freeing and the best thing I did while I was in school.
Be Comfortable :: This sort of falls in line with being yourself, but for the love of all that is good, where comfy clothes – whatever that is to you. In junior college, I mainly wore workout clothes, but at uni I dressed it up occasionally, but typically kept it at jeans and a tee. My first few days at uni I tried extra hard, and it was noticeable. Well, the fact I wasn’t totally comfortable was noticeable. Plus, sitting at a desk or in a lecture hall for hours in not fun if you aren’t comfortable.
Show Up :: I mean literally and figuratively. I lost count of how many classes had less than half of the students show up on the first day of class. I know they say it’s just syllabus day but be there! It shows that you care, that you take it seriously, and the professor will take notice. After that, be present when you are in class. I won’t lie, I skipped my fair share, but it’s important to be there when you are there. Pay attention, take notes, don’t play on your phone or laptop, and don’t eat loud, crunchy food.
Know Your Schedule :: You don’t have to have it memorized, but try to have it written down. I carried my planner in my hand and had my schedule written on a sticky note on the front. It’s super awkward if you have to leave a class after the professor has announced the course details. It hasn’t happened to me, but it’s happened in a few of my classes.
Don’t Stress :: If the absolute worst possible thing happens, don’t worry. I promise people will forget a whole lot sooner than you will. Especially if it is something as simple being in the wrong classroom or dropping all those books you have to carry. I promise.
University is a wonderful experience and I really hope these help you make your first day great! Do you have any tips?