The pressure of college success weighs heavily on the shoulders of new college freshmen. It’s not easy transitioning from the small pond of high school into the ocean of university life. But there are ways to make this transition far more streamlined. Whether you’ve entered into your first AOS degree program (Associates of Occupation Studies) or are studying for your doctorate, college is a challenge, but one that is incredibly rewarding. Your degree program will provide you with unlimited experiences for the future if you know how to maximize it.
Keep up with your exercise
The carefree nature of high school living probably saw that you participated in an afterschool club or sport. Keep with this hobby. Physical activities like running reduce stress and promote strong mental health. Other activities like chess or debate club are fantastic ways to flex your mind while engaging in something beyond your studies. Take a break and do some of the things that make you happy.
Get Enough Rest
Sleeping is critical to the developing mind of a college student. We often hear that you have to choose between classwork, sleeping, and partying, but that balance is easier to achieve than you might think. Getting your eight hours of sleep a night is the surest way to wake up on the right foot and ensure that you’re ready to tackle whatever the day has in store for you – whether that be a marathon of classes or an afternoon of tailgating and football.
Keeping track of your finances is an important skill for all of us in the adult world. Many students in the United States receive financial aid but don’t know what to do with the extra cash. Now that you’ve moved out of your parent’s house, if you aren’t already saving you should start. Strong financial responsibility is the cornerstone of a fruitful and productive lifetime of happiness. Get a jump on these skills as a young adult and they will follow you forever.
Stay up to date with your doctor
Keeping in touch with your doctor, either on campus or back home is essential to health and happiness. Getting regular hearing assessment, shots, and eye tests is the best way to make sure that you stay in top shape for the year ahead. You don’t want to get sick and be out of commission for a week right as the teachers are gearing up for finals revision.
Learn to cut costs
Signing up for a free Rx card, shopping in bulk with your friends to pile up rewards points and coupons, and taking the bus instead of driving to campus are all essential rites of passage for college students. Prescription costs especially eat into your weekly or monthly budget, so saving with generic medications and other discounts at CVS or Walmart is essential. Learning to pinch pennies in order to splurge on the things you want instead of those you need is a long term skill that will serve you well even years after college ends. Get saving so that you can splash out for that big party coming up.
Become a fixture at the library
Any college student worth his salt knows how to make great use of the library resources. Learning the ins-and-outs of the study rooms, online journal resources, and help desk are fundamental pieces of collegiate success. Learn to use these in your freshman year and you will always have the assistance whenever you need it.
Don’t forget to call home
Keeping in touch with family and friends back home is an important way to stay grounded while away at college. It’s easy to get lost in the hustle and forget to check in with those important to you between semesters. If you disappear for years, you will miss out on all the big moments in their lives, and yours will pass them by as well.
Don’t forget to have fun while you are away at school. Many people think of these years as the best of their lives. Don’t forget to live a little and relish in the successes you are creating for yourself. It’s all part of the process. Take it all in.