There are some basic survival tips that every college freshman living at school and away from home should know. These are some great tips that college students state they would have wanted to know before they went to college. So if you take these survival tips seriously, you’ll have a huge advantage when beginning your first year.
Some people have lived on their own or learned these skills beforehand, and therefore may be able to adjust more quickly to college life. However, for those who may be testing the waters of living away from home for the first time, here are some important tips to make the transition go much more smoothly!:
- Upload the campus map to your phone. You can make it appear as if you are texting so everyone won’t know you’re a freshman and be able to make it to class on time as a bonus!
- Find out about professors before signing up for the classes. Ask people who have taken the classes who they think is the best Professor, and find out whether your professors are on www.ratemyprofessor.com. Always have backups just in case the class becomes closed, and keep in mind that sometimes schools will not let freshmen select their own schedules.
- Schedule classes you know you can make on time. If you are not a morning person, don’t schedule your classes for that time. Chances are you will oversleep and miss class.
- Set two alarm clocks. I had a roommate who would continue to hit snooze, so she placed one alarm clock by the bed and one across the room. This way you have to get out of bed to turn it off.
- Learn how to do your laundry. It may be the first time you’ve had to do your own laundry. There are a few things that you might want to grab to start: laundry detergent, bleach (for whites) fabric softener or dryer sheets. Lookout for specific details on how to do laundry in college in an upcoming post.
- Buy storage containers for under the bed. Find out the amount of space between the floor and the bed, this way you can buy the containers ahead of time. You’ll need as much storage as possible, and by placing the containers under the bed, they will be hidden and out of the way.
- Look up the school’s policy on bed risers. Some allow bed risers so that you can raise your bed a foot or more, allowing you more space under the bed for storage. You just might have to jump to get into bed — but you’ll get that cardio in. Or you can just get a step stool!
- Purchase a shower caddy. You need an easy way to carry all your stuff to the bathroom, or else you’ll be running back and forth for all the stuff you left in your room.
- Shower shoes are a must-have. You want to avoid catching a nasty foot fungus from the floor in the shower.
- Bring a bathrobe. You want to be able to walk comfortably from your room to the shower, without having only a towel to wear. This is especially important with a shared bathroom for the floor!
- Know what to do when you share a public bathroom with people on your entire floor. Run the water in the sink if you are uncomfortable with other people hearing you go to the bathroom. (If they are not hand-sensor faucets).
- Learn how to budget your money, and stick to the budget. Set aside some money for socializing, but also remember you will want some money for snacks and clothing throughout the semester. These would be the things that magically appear at home. The same thing does not happen in your dorm or apartment. These are the necessities you will need to take care of on your own. For example:
- Traveling home – tickets, gas, tolls, etc.
- Haircuts and hygiene
- Laundry (Post coming soon)
- Buy and rent used books. Not all books are electronic yet. You can find the books you need for classes, and purchase or rent some of them used. Buy ones with minimal highlighting, especially if you are looking to resell your books when you are done. Be careful not to look at the highlighting from the person who previously owned the book; you never know what kind of student they were, and it’s extremely unlikely that only the highlighted parts will be important or that you’ll need to know everything that’s highlighted from someone else.
- Renting books can be cost-effective. Sometimes you will not be able to sell your books again – especially if new editions are coming out every year or so. Renting may be better so that you pay less, overall, and you’re not stuck with a bunch of books you can’t use or sell.
- This website is a great tool for finding good deals on Direct Textbook: http://www.directtextbook.com/
- Simply type in the ISBN and view the buy and rent options across the most popular and cheapest sources for books. Easy way to price compare as well!
- Another great website is amazon.com.
- Search for “used”. Many books you can find in good condition and a lot are cheaper than newer books.
- Also, search Cheapest Textbooks.
- You can search by ISBN, title, author, and keyword.
- The freshman 15. This can be a myth if you want it to be. There are a few things to keep in mind to avoid making the myth a reality…
- Many students eat more because unlimited food is available in the dining halls. Students also tend to drink more when socializing.
- College can be stressful, especially for a freshman. That being said, be careful of stress eating
- Avoid binge-eating while you are binge-watching your favorite shows.
- So, keep exercising, and watch what you eat, or else you’ll make the myth a reality.
- You are responsible for yourself. The school does not care if you don’t attend classes. No one will hold your hand and follow-up if you don’t go. They already have your money, so GO TO CLASS! It’s your education.
- Seek a counselor or mental health professional from your college/university. If you are feeling down and need to express your emotions, whether that’s because you’re away from home, missing family, or missing friends, etc., a lot of colleges and universities have counselors and mental health professionals on-site. Reach out to someone if you feel like these emotions are interfering with your daily life and school work.
What other tips would you give a Freshman entering college?
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