How to Prep for Your Freshman Year at College for the Spring Semester
Congratulations on your venture to college!
Every college student goes through a mix of emotions when faced with the first year. With the spring semester looming close, it's important to remember that everyone gets a little overwhelmed when starting something new. And it's okay to feel those feelings, but don't let them push you off the path to your future. Embrace the challenge of college, commit to being the best student you can be, and prep for freshman year with this quick list of helpful tips for the spring semester.
Doublecheck Your College Docs, like Scholarships and Financial Aid
Is everything in order for your first semester at college? Take a minute to double or even triple-check to make sure that all of your proverbial ducks are in a row. You don't want to be called down to admissions because your paperwork is incomplete.
Scholarships should have gone through, financial aid should be in place, and high school or online educational transcripts should have been approved by the admissions office. Your course schedule should have also been made official.
Side note: While ill-advised, some college students miss freshman orientation because of work or prior engagements. If that's you, make sure you touch base with a college map or take your own tour of the campus to learn about where your classes are located. You want to arrive on time on your first day as a college newbie!
Study Your Class Schedule, Find Your Class Locations, and Plan Accordingly
Prepare for your first day of college classes and every day thereafter by locating classrooms before your first day. You can walk around the campus after freshman orientations or take your own tour at a later date to scope out classroom locations. You may be surprised to learn that your biology classroom is clear across the campus from your languages classroom, so you need to create a plan for walking to and from that leaves you with enough time to find a seat and settle.
Study, study, study your class schedule. Get to know your class times forwards and backwards. Depending on classroom locations, you'll need to give yourself optimum time to reach courses that could be across the campus from one another. Plus, it may be embarrassing to have to go to admissions because you forget where you need to be on the first day of needing to be there.
Moving to a Dorm Room? Mentally Organize Your Space!
Most college dorms are shared spaces, so avoid overloading a potential roommate by overstuffing your designated space. The best way to organize your spot in a dorm room is by seeing the room first and planning accordingly. Only pack what you need and what is comfortable. Remember that a positive roommate experience is all about respect for another person's space, so don't infringe on theirs with your stuff.
Helpful Tip: There are space savers specifically designed for college dorm rooms! They are great ways to keep your clothes, and personal belongings put away and on your side of the room. Look into getting one or two of those when shopping for new school supplies!
Have a Successful Semester with a Realistic Weekly Schedule
Some college freshmen overdo it in their first semester because they underestimate the difficulty of their classes. Do your research about the courses provided. Read other student accounts and ask around to gauge the difficulties, then plan realistically.
It's always better to under-schedule your time through freshman year than overschedule your time. You can add classes later if you feel unchallenged, so start small with courseloads instead of going full force into overloading your schedule.
Upgrade School Supplies for a Fresh Start!
Sectioned notebooks, great ink pens, a reliable organizer, color-coded folders, and a solid backpack are imperative to the success of your freshman year. These are essential school supplies, especially because most colleges still utilize heavy textbooks you'll need to tote from one class to another. Investing in good school supplies is tantamount to investing in your future.
Give your school supplies an upgrade!
The backpack that lasted through your four years of high school may not hold up to the strain of college books and must-haves. Just like those one-subject notebooks that are half-filled with old science notes may be too flimsy and worn for the notes you're expected to take in your first college courses. With upgraded school supplies, you can ensure the essentials' durability while ensuring a successful first semester.
Side note: For financial aid students, many of your school supplies will be financially covered at the on-campus bookstores. Ergo, if you don't want to spend too much out of your own pockets, look into snagging a backpack and what you need after your textbooks have been paid for.
Walk Into Each Class with Hope and Confidence!
College is a new experience for many, and that newness can lead to overwhelming feelings of apprehension and anxiety. Think of the old saying – "fake it until you make it." Through your anxiety, plaster a smile on your face and walk across campus with positive vibes. Exude hope and confidence when you sit down at your desks for the first time. You're there to learn, broaden your horizons, and better your future. It's a chance that not everyone gets, so make the most of the opportunities ahead of you.
When you exude confidence, eventually, your mind will catch up. You'll begin to feel confident and hopeful about your future. So, buckle down, focus on your classes, and learn to the best of your abilities. Work hard towards your goals of a brighter future!If you're feeling a little unprepared for freshman year at college, don't worry – that feeling will pass with time and prep. As you delve into your spring semester, you won't have time to feel scared or worried about the newness of being a college student. You'll be too busy living it and, hopefully, loving it!