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Adapting to University life as a Freshman

It’s another time back to school, but this time, it’s not back to primary school but to the University! Resuming back to school most times gets most teenagers anxious, and this time would surely not be an exception because it’s a big move to the University life.

Your actions and decisions in your first year of University can go a long way in determining what happens the remaining years in school and most importantly, the remaining years of your life. A couple of mistakes or setbacks in the first year are very possible to correct later on but terrible mistakes can lead to a staggering CGPA for a very long period of time. Do very poorly and one might end up on probation or advised to withdraw!

All these are totally avoidable but then, that doesn’t mean you should get so engrossed in school work, reading all day long, not resting well and cutting off all forms of social activities while in school to avoid failure. A sustainable balance between academia, social activities and a plain life is all that’s needed. Just this basic tip and I promise you a smooth ride throughout University and the rest of your life.

Now, here are some tips to help you get through first year and make the most of it:

  • ORGANIZE YOURSELF: Get yourself separate lecture notes and file folders for each and every of your courses with their materials or handouts respectively. Have the school’s timetable for your courses alone, develop yours also and have a To-do list for each day. I wouldn’t recommend using a phone or PC app for planning because there might not be easy access to these services when they are needed urgently. Develop a note-taking and reading strategy and follow them religiously.
  • MAKE PLANS ALWAYS: Set targets on your calendar or planners and try to get them achieved. For assignments you need to do before certain dates, set your own deadlines before then to account for any unforeseen occurrences or reviews. Read ahead of classes, read in preparedness for exams right from the beginning of the semester so as to reduce the workload during exam period. Make plans for every other things you feel necessary during your stay in school.

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  • EAT RIGHT: Though not thoroughly proven, most university students tend to put on a little more weight during their first periods in school. With free access to junks, nobody to put control as to the amount of food they consume, they tend to load themselves up with calories. You can still have a little bit of these things but don’t live totally on them.
  • SLEEP WELL: Most times, being a freshman, we are tempted to stay up late with our phones, chatting with our room or dorm mates. And believe you me, sleep is something not to be joked with because during sleep, the brain works on the work learnt from classes the previous day and stores them. It also a period when metabolism takes place within the body. Inadequate sleep leads to a stressed brain and body and affects tests and exams in negative ways of course. Going to bed late also might lead to you waking up late and missing early morning classes too.
  • RELATE WITH YOUR LECTURERS: Generally, University students tend to be weary and scared of their lecturers which is not supposed to be. Don’t be scared of them. Go have a chat with them during their office hours. Present yourself as responsible, willing to learn. Tell them about their material you read, where you have challenges and they will surely be happy to help.
  • MAKE REGULAR CONTACTS WITH HOME: Do make it a point of duty to call home and reach out to your family and friends often. Keeping in touch with them can reduce the tension encountered in coping with the new university life. You can easily always reach out to them in times of challenges and get comfort as they know you probably even better than yourself.
  • MAKE FREQUENT USE OF THE LIBRARY: The library should be one of the places a student frequents the most. Make good use of the library, get used to the resources as soon as you can so that in times of urgent need of the library, you won’t end up getting stuck as to what to do and where to go within the library.
  • RELAXATION IS KEY: Once in a while, get out, attend parties, go shopping, go sightseeing, do a lot of fun stuff. These are good ways to burn out and cool off the heat of school. Just remember, keep a balance while doing this.
  • EXERCISE OFTEN: This is another way to burn out, especially the accumulated calories. Jogging, hitting the gym and walking to class often are really easy ways to exercise, think, keep fit and burn off fat and calories.
  • SPEND WISELY: Most students get an ATM card resuming to school and the easy access to money might get to them and they spend excessively forgetting the need to save and keep some money for the rainy days. So, make a list of important things you need to get, save some money first then spend the rest. It’s a good way to make sure your finances are well managed.

So, freshmen, this is just my little something for y’all as you resume to a new phase of your lives. I wish you a fruitful and a fun-filled first year in the University.

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