back to school at high school

Back to School

Surviving Freshman Year 101

You just graduated high school, and now it’s time to transition into your next academic home of 4 years (or more if you’re looking to add Dr. to your name). Your high school status doesn’t get carried forward into University. So whether you were the class valedictorian or the one that was always in detention – college is a clean slate for everyone. Not only is it a clean state, but it’s also a place where you gain independence and a myriad of critical decision making.

So how good is your decision-making skills? It could go 3 ways:

  • You go to class and then straight to the books. A 4.0 GPA exists, but the only social life you have is stalking other people’s social life on social media (like, like, like).
  • You don’t go to class. You focus on the dorm parties, and getting the perfect filter on Instagram to display your “wild” nights. Passing each exam with a 50 is your idea of a job well done.
  • You balance! You have a good GPA and a social life, which is possible if the right decisions are made at the right time.

Option 3 is perhaps what you’re looking for. So here’s a list on how you can survive and THRIVE in your college experience. This list was created so you can enjoy your college experience and not have it be a nightmare.

  1. Get involved on campus. Aside from Frosh Week, there is no better way than meeting new friends than by joining student organizations. There are over hundreds of different student run clubs, so find one that interests you! It will allow you to learn new skills and feel a sense of connection to the college (it also helps with the homesickness).
  2. Eat healthy and stay active. You won’t find home cooked meals in the food court or cafeteria. So it will get tempting, and you will want to munch on unhealthy snacks at 2am. But if you want to avoid the “Freshman 15” extra pounds, then seek a balance between the foods you eat. There’s also the option of making your own meals and snacks! Use price comparison websites such as PriceReel to find food containers and create meal preps for the entire week. Meal preps will help you save time and money!
  3. Prioritize class. College is already stressful, so avoid putting yourself under pressure by leaving an assignment for the last minute. Give yourself a few hours a day to write an essay or study for an exam. Setting your own deadlines is a great way to ensure your work is done on time and in top notch quality.
  4. Take advantage of the services your college offers. All the services available in college are there to help you thrive. There are writing centres that will help with your essay editing, career services to help you map out your future, and countless learning labs/tutors available for extra help. You will be spending money on other necessities, so avoid comparing prices for services that are available for FREE!
  5. Spend smart. Your college degree will be the most expensive piece of paper you own. Therefore making impulse purchases without comparing prices is not smart. There are price comparison websites, such as PriceReel that allow you to compare prices and find the item you need within your budget. Taking advantage of price comparison websites like PriceReel will save you time, because you can window shop at the comfort your room! Use different apps to organize and track your spends. This way, at the end of the month you can evaluate your spends, and make changes where it’s needed!

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