What To Expect and Mistakes To Avoid Your Freshman Year
Going away to college is quite an exciting experience. The first year away is the first year of adult responsibilities for many college students. When you couple the academic work load as well as living away from home for the first time and a college job balance, it can seem a bit overwhelming for some. Avoid these mistakes to make the experience a bit more enjoyable:
Don’t bite off more than you can chew.
Establish a work, school and life balance.
Become responsible for finances.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to your parents or other adult figures for guidance.
When you attend college away from home you will either stay in campus housing or get a rental unit. Depending upon your financial situation, you may require a roommate. Typically, most college students do require a part time job in order to cover essentials while they are away. Your first year away is about learning how to be an adult and how to manage a home away from home. It is important to not bite off more than you can chew. Do not overwhelm yourself with a heavy class load and a demanding job. Make sure you learn how to adapt to college life before you increase your work load. You are finally getting a taste of freedom and what being an adult is all about, make sure you leave some time to experience college truly and do not bog yourself down with only studying and working.
If you are staying off campus you will have some bills that will need to be paid. You will need to be accountable for electric, wi-fi, cable, cell phones, rent and potentially other expenses if your parents do not help you out financially. You may want to consider looking into light companies with no deposit for your electric needs to help save even more money on your monthly expenses. If you feel as though you are struggling with maintaining your bills, reach out to your parents or trusted independent adult for help with budgeting tips. Creating a spreadsheet of revenue and expenses will help you fully understand your finances.
College Study Tips
Studying is important while away at college. You cannot get so caught up with work and friends that you allow your grades to falter. Make sure you designate a time frame daily to stay on top of your class work. If your residence is too noisy you will want to consider studying at a local café or a library where you can focus and retain the information that you are studying. It is also a good idea to form study groups, this is a great way to crowdsource and learn in a new way. You may also make some lasting friendships from a study group.
College is completely different from high school. In high school you had teachers reminding you to do your homework, peer led study groups, social works and advisors helping you and friends that you had known for quite some time to give you a hand with studying. When you go away to college you may not know anyone and it may take some time to establish study partners and a supportive network of individuals to help you with your education. Make sure when you register for college you get a complete list of study resources so you can quickly establish help if you need it.
College Financial and Budgeting Tips
When you plan on going away to college you will meet with a financial aid specialist to go over payment and loan options. If you did not participate in a basic accounting or finance course in high school this would be a good time to discuss budgeting with a trusted adult. Starting off on the right food and putting the correct amount of money aside each month will benefit you in the long run.