A Few Things I Wish I Knew During Freshman Year

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After graduating high school in 2009, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I knew that education and school is the most likely the path I will take. However, there a few lessons I have learned that I wish I had been aware of earlier. Here is a list of a few things that I wish I had known during my freshman year in college.

  1.  Budget money– It wasn’t until my sophomore year when I realized that I saved at least $60 a month by buying groceries. It pays to watch spending and saving money when it’s possible. Also by switching to renting books online via websites like chegg.com can help you buy on overpriced textbooks at a much lower price.
  2.  Stay Committed– School is a marathon and not a sprint. It can get frustrating at times when things get stressful like finals or presentations. There are many times in the life of college students when crossroads are reached and decisions must be made. For me it was the support of my family both emotionally and financially that is keeping me motivated to achieve this degree.
  3.  Get used to being uncomfortable– Lets face it, school is not for everyone and there are weird and awkward situations on top of learning that a student must deal with. College students are constantly being put into uncomfortable positions for the sake of education, like standing up on the first day of class to introduce yourself or that 15-minute group presentation. These things do not stop throughout all of college. There will always people who you don’t work well with and situations that go against every grain in your body.
  4.  Think of school as a job– When I was graduating high school I was under the impression that college students barely go to class and just hang out all day and pass classes with no effort. This is what I did my freshman year, not caring about attending class and letting lectures roll by without taking a single note. I had no idea that school and life in general is what you make of it. School can be as serious as you want it to be. When school is the only thing for you to do it is important to go to class every day and develop a work ethic to prepare yourself for employment after education.
  5.  Take advantage of being a college student– There are many perks to being a college student like cheaper meals and free bus rides as well as discounted prices at sporting events, museums, and aquariums. I didn’t take advantage of these money saving opportunities until I moved to Hawaii, didn’t have a car and lived closer to campus. Other things like scholarships and grants are available for a wide variety of students.
  6. Make sacrifices– In order to graduate from college, it is necessary to make sacrifices. For me, surfing is a big part of my life, however, I couldn’t manage to surf as much as I wanted without my grades suffering. I had to put my passion on the backburner to pursue a path of education.
  7.  Have fun– I’m sure not every college student needs to be told this, but in a world of stressful deadlines and frustrating group work, it is important to remind ourselves that college is a great time to have fun trying new things and meeting new friends and creating new memories.