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Hello Monday: A letter to my college freshman self

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As I head into my senior year of college, I often think of what I would tell myself in the summer of 2018 as I prepared for my first semester in college.

While I can’t go back in time to tell those things to myself, I can share them with any of you who are new students! So practice your notetaking skills as I share some tips I wish I knew during my freshman year of college.

Be a Friend and Get Involved - you might be apprehensive about going to events or joining clubs, but there’s no need. Everyone is looking for a friend, but everyone is nervous. Make the first move and introduce yourself. Even a simple smile or “hello” is all it takes to start a friendship. And don’t be afraid to attend events put on by the university or student organizations. You might make a friend or find a new passion. Even if you don’t, you’re at least sure to get some free stuff!

Don’t Neglect Studies - don’t neglect your studies in your freshman year. It can be difficult. General education classes might be boring and all of the fun and excitement of college can be distracting, but if you keep your classes in focus, the rest of your college career will be so much better. Take notes, read your text books, and don’t be afraid to talk to your professors if you don’t understand something. Study frequently. If you study a little every day, you’re not going to have to pull an all-nighter to study for an exam. I promise you won’t enjoy that…

Make Health a Priority - a crucial part of a great start to college is your health. With all the fun, excitement, and busyness of college, you might find yourself not getting enough sleep, eating poorly, and not exercising regularly. Not to mention the mental and emotional stress that can come with college. However, many universities and colleges have free exercise classes, free counseling sessions, and a variety of healthy food options in their cafeterias. So make sure you take care of your body and mind by taking advantage of all the services your school offers to students. 

Create a Consistent Schedule - keeping a consistent routine can be challenging in college. Unlike high school, a college class schedule can have a crazy, inconsistent structure. Despite this, if you create a weekly schedule of your classes, you can find spots for different activities and engagements to fit into your week. Doing this can allow you to plan ahead better and stay on top of all of your responsibilities. I know from experience that if you plan out your week, you can have a healthy balance of school and fun!

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