The Freshman Handbook: Tips on Starting Your College Life

Freshman life is a whole new world. Despite the cliche of your university experience being “the best days of your life,” in many cases, that can be true. From experience, here are a few tips to help you in your memorable journey.

Friends and where to find them

Not many are lucky enough to have friends from school join their same major, faculty, or even university. For shy students or people who are not socially gifted, interaction is the ultimate nightmare. There is really no way to get around that but by practicing your socializing muscles. You could do that through simple hellos and good mornings, or engaging in simple conversations. Little by little you build rapport and ease your social anxiety. Also, if you don’t try now when you’re a freshman with no stakes, then when? Put yourself out there, trust us.

Clubs and activities, are they worth it?

Absolutely, especially for a freshman. Not only will they give you so much needed experience, whether it be specialized, professional, or personal experience, but you will also keep flexing those social muscles. This is another chance as well to network with people from different majors and universities, which, trust us, will help you in the future. Not to mention extracurricular activities can be a great start to building a strong resume.

Work life, school Life, social Life

You don’t have to choose, but you also don’t need to overwhelm yourself. Getting an internship is great for an undergrad; working a full or part time job is also a notable addition to your profile. But doing this, being involved in extracurricular activities, trying to get good grades, and wanting to have a social life all at the same time can be a recipe for burnout. 

The thing is, you can do all these things, but balance is key. Most importantly, you need to know that you will sacrifice and you will lose sleep, but you will have experienced the full insane university roller coaster. Just a tip: if it gets too hectic, put yourself first. Always.

Going online?

Make yourself a calendar. From this Zoom link, to that Blackboard thread, to these PDFs, before long, you get lost in all the E-Learning web. Organize yourself and your time; you will thank yourself. 

Also, worried about the social situation with distance learning? The same rules apply about putting yourself out there: engagement is key. But now universities will put in the effort to get some campus activity more and more, and apply a hybrid learning system so as to help students not feel like they are miles away.  

You’ve got this

There is no point in worrying. Recent circumstances taught us to live life in the present. Do your best, make memories, and take every chance you’ve got. You’re center stage now.

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