Sunday, November 6, 2011

ABCs of College...

A- Attendance. Skipping class will get you nowhere. I promise. I'm over halfway done with my first semester and I have yet to skip a class. Don't let yourself fall behind because you're lazy. Give yourself a little motivation, like, rewarding yourself with some Starbucks after class or something like that. It will be a long-term reward when you realize your grades and hard work are reflected by your efforts. Even if those efforts are just the fact that you showed up to class. I know most of my classes take attendance anyway. So, I will lose points if I don't show up. Why would I punish myself like that? So, just go to class people. You can do it!
B- Beer. Stay away from it. Really.. If you're not of legal drinking age, don't waste your time. I know most people feel as though to get the college experience they need to drink, but you don't. It can cause lots of trouble, and not to mention, if you're under the age of 21, it's illegal. I know it's something lots of people do though, so just remember, it's just empty calories. If you wanna drink beer all the time, you might as well say hello to the "freshman 15"... Because you will gain it in no time. Do yourself a favor and steer clear of the beer.
C- Clean. Don't let yourself get caught up in a mess. Especially because now you're sharing a space with someone else--and they don't want your mess in their living environment. This is something I need to do today, actually. I hate putting clothes away... but, it's something that needs to be done. P.S. Veronica, I thoroughly apologize to you that you have to deal with my messy side of the room right now... I wubb you <3
D- Dorms. When you're living with a bunch of other people, you really need to be considerate. Don't take up 10 washing machines, don't run up and down the halls at 4 in the morning, and try to get to know your floor and hall mates. It's really beneficial to leave your room's door open as much as possible for the first couple weeks. That way, when people walk by, you can stop and say "Hi!" and introduce yourself. It's really the quickest way to make friends.
E- Eat. Although this is still something I'm working on, you really should try to eat a solid breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It's already 1:20PM and I haven't had anything to eat or drink yet today. But, really... find a dining hall or a place in your main student center that has something you like to eat and go there. Our Student Union has a salad bar that is ridiculously delicious. I'm going there on my way back from class later. I get at least one salad every day. Try to eat healthy now and you'll thank yourself later.
F- Freedom. Now that you're in college, you've discovered this new sense of freedom. That doesn't mean you should disregard everything you've learned throughout your life like what's wrong and what's right. You need to balance your activities: Work. vs. Play. Make sure you spend more time working toward school than you do attending parties or going out with friends. If you don't focus on your school work, you'll get behind. If you want to go shopping with your friends on Saturday, make sure you spend the week getting your work done. Don't punish yourself. Your own worst enemy is yourself. Don't get caught up in what your friends are doing. Maybe they aren't taking as many credit hours so it seems as though they don't as much work as you do. Don't worry about it. Get your own work done on time, and then you'll have time to enjoy yourself. When you don't have your parents there to tell you to get your work done, you have to tell yourself those things.
G- Grades. The grading system is slightly different here. The scale is easier here than it was for me in high school, which is nicer. I am used to striving for higher percentages, and so, now I have higher grades just because my high school trained me to. Instead of a 92.5 being an "A" a 90 is an "A"... and, that might not seem like a huge different, but those few numbers make a big difference. Don't let your grades slip in college, even if they are easier though. Make sure you take the time to study a little bit every chance that you get. If you stay ahead of things, you'll be golden to breeze through exams because you'll know all the information.
H- Homesick. Missing home is normal. It happens to everyone at some point and for some reason. Don't go home too soon after you leave for school. That will set you back when you come up to a time when you really can't make it home for a long while, and you won't be able to handle it. Go home for special occasions like a huge family party, religious holidays, and school-wide breaks. Don't keep going home every weekend. It will help you get used to be away and make it easier. That can't happen if you go home every weekend though.
I- Involvement. Seriously. Get involved! There are so many different things that you can get involved in around campus! There are club and intramural sports, church groups, and even hobby and philanthropical organizations. There are sororities and fraternities too! Just keep an eye out for things that might interest you and don't hesitate to sign up! Also, there are usually specific events like, "Campus Fest" here at BGSU where all the different clubs and organizations set up a table and you can learn about them and sign up for more information! Not to mention tons of "free swag!" So, yeah.. GET INVOLVED! Don't be a loser who sits around with nothing to do!
J- Juggling. Having to "juggle" multiple tasks at once is something that might be new to you. I had four exams in one week this semester. It was really stressful for me because up to that point, my classes had all been so laid back and I hadn't really even had any kinds of tests. Because of that, I didn't really know what to expect or how the tests would be formatted. Luckily, I have more exams coming up, so, I know how the different teachers test and grade, so now I can better prepare myself. It's really going to take some figuring out on your own. But, just really learn how to manage your time well and don't wait until the very last second to get things done. That really will create unnecessary stress on yourself. Take a deep breath and just get things done in the order that they're due. You'll be able to do it!
K- Kids. Okay, so, you're not really a kid anymore... you're probably 18 years old and a legal adult... but, college is the very last time that you have someone to look after you. So, you need to step it up and start realizes that as college goes on, you're going to be getting closer and closer to the real world.. Enjoy your time in college because, from what I hear, it's the best time of your life. I can't even disagree. However, I haven't finished college yet, so I can't confirm the statement either. (Haha)
L- Love. You have to make sure you love your school. Don't go somewhere just because that's where you think your parents want you to go, or because your significant other is going there or something. YOU need to like it for YOURSELF. Also, speaking of significant others.. if you don't have one, don't go crazy with the amount of new people that you meet at college. You're just trashy if you can be associated with a million different people. Just because these people are all new now, doesn't mean they're going to still be new in three years when you're still here... So, make sure you keep that in mind before you do something you might regret later. If you DO have a significant other, don't let the excitement of college get ahead of you. If you're going to be in a relationship with someone, you better not having any other relations with anyone else. It's as simple as that.
M- Makeovers. That old saying about how people change once they get to college--that's so true. You can't escape that fact. The thing you need to stay aware of is if you're changing for the better or for the worse. If you keep your priorities in tact, then you won't lose sight of your goals and you will mature and be ready for the real world. If you change and just start forgetting about school, which should be a main priority, then you will not succeed as well as you might have originally planned. 
N- Nightlife. Now, I know this word is usually associated with downtowns and stuff like that, but, I don't really know much about downtown yet. I haven't really chosen to venture that far out yet. I mean, sure, it's good to have a nightlife, but, you don't have to go out to a club to have fun. You can go to the movies with friends or something. I dunno. I just can't stress enough that you need to stay focused on school. I'm already seeing so many people's grades slipping and that's just your future slipping through your fingers. Once you drop it, it's really difficult to find all the pieces again to put it all back together.
O- Organization. They true key to success is organization. Keep a planner or something to keep track of due dates of assignments and stuff. My Macbook Pro has the BEST thing ever, iCal, and I can just put all my assignments on there and I can set alerts or whatever I need to do. Since I bring my laptop with me to all my classes, I can just type up assignment really quick on there and even attach notes or documents that I have to it so I can keep track of things that will help me.
P- Party. Have fun parties! Get a bunch of people from your hall or floor or whoever together and play board games or watch movies or bake food in your building's kitchen (if you don't have one in your room). "Party" does not always mean or need to involve alcohol. It can just mean having a soberly good time.. and that's more appealing anyway.
Q- Quiet Hours. Seriously people, be quiet when you're supposed to be quiet. Sometimes I think our quiet hours should be a little later, like maybe 1AM... BUT, when it's 3AM... that's when it really does need to be quiet. Some of us are trying to sleep. (However, at the moment, I cannot sleep because Veronica is snoring... :P) Hahaha. But yeah, just, follow the rules. When you need to be quiet, just, keep it down. It's not really a hard concept to grasp.
R- Respect. This means you, soccer girls! When someone is sitting outside their door (me), and their neighbors (soccer girls) walk outside their door to go get their laundry, this doesn't mean you should look at them an start laughing. Not nice. It must suck to only have three friends EVER who come over because you were mean to EVERYONE in your hall so no one likes you.... But yeah, seriously. You (the people reading this and anyone in general) shouldn't be rude to people.. because that's an instant turnoff and will NOT help you get friends, that's for sure. You also need to respect the place you live in and the people in charge (i.e. RAs, Hall Directors).. You shouldn't be walking around damaging things and tearing things off people's doors. That's really not cool. And, this goes out to people who live in my building.. we live in BRAND NEW DORMS. No one else has ever lived here... and there are people kicking holes through walls and smearing feces on the wall... That is NOT okay. Ew. That second one makes me want to throw up. Sorry for thinking we were all in college... not in preschool.... But yeah, show some respect and you'll get it back. 
S- Security. Different places do their security differently. Here in my building, after 11:30PM you need a proxy card for this specific building to get in at all. And, you can't get past the main lobby ever without that card. And, if you come in past Midnight, you have to check in with the front desk. Also, if you have someone staying in the building, you have to check them in. If they are not a BGSU student,  once you check them in, they get a guest pass. There's also a limit of the amount of days you can have that guest over and stuff like that. But, all that stuff is for yours and everyone else's well-being. AND! College campuses have Blue Light Safety alert things that allow you to go up to them and click a button to send an alert to the police, fire station and 911 or something like that. Seeing those scattered throughout campus really help keep me at ease when I'm walking around campus when it's dark. Although, Bowling Green is a pretty safe place. I've never felt threatened or anything. So, I love this campus for that reason. However, I still don't recommend walking around by yourself. Especially if you go off campus anywhere. You should really always have a buddy and a fully-charged cell phone. Haha.
T- Teachers. Look them up on Seriously. That place is pretty darn accurate. It helped me pick my professors. Although, unfortunately, I had lots of grad students this semester, so lots of them weren't on there. So, yeah... I have a creeper one.. but, whatever. I'm almost done with that class. Anyway, yeah.. go to their office hours... introduce yourself to them on the first day. It's not sucking up. It's showing them that you're serious about your studies and you're not there to waste their time, so you don't want them to waste yours. Also, once you get to know their teaching style, you'll really know what to expect from them and what they expect from you.
U- Umbrella. Get one. It WILL rain.. and you WILL need an umbrella.. and you'll make so many friends in one second because they'll all want to get under your umbrella too! Seriously.. while you're at it.. get rain boots too. It'll probably be two of the most useful purchases you ever make. You'll get a ridiculous amount of use out of them.
V- Values. While away at school, keep your values in mind. If you keep thinking about the big picture, you won't let yourself stray too far away and it'll be much easier to reach your goals.
W- Weight. Don't be another one to fall into the "freshman 15" trap. Make sure you eat healthy and make good food choices. Also, try and make it to the rec center to work out. It'll even help to just jog around campus. I just walked 13.1 miles yesterday at Relay for life. That sure felt great! (P.S. That's a half marathon... :P)
X- X (as in Roman numeral "10"). This is probably starting to get repetitive, but, you really need to stay focused. Do you want to be a 10th year, senior? One who ISN'T in medical school or something...... Just because you slacked off so bad or something. So, seriously... I have no sympathy for you if that's your plan. You're either going to end up with so much debt that you'll never pay off because you can't get a job or you're just spoiled and wasting all of your parents' money. So, just get out of college already and try and make something of yourself. *scoff*
Y- Yearning. You'll retain so much more knowledge and get so much more out of  your classes if you legitimately want to learn. It's really helped me that I came to college with an exact plan and that I know exactly what I want to do. I went through so many different career phases.. but, after I realized I couldn't see myself doing anything else, I sit in my VCT classes and I just love my life. Haha. It's really funny. Try taking aptitude tests or something so you know what kind of classes you want to take. Don't waste your time in classes you don't need that you have no interest in. You'll let yourself slip through the cracks because you won't care.
Z- Zeta Zeta Zeta. I know this isn't real...but, I mean, let's be honest... I needed a "Z" and when you think of college, you automatically associate that with Greek Life.. a little anyway. That's always how they portray college in movies and stuff.. so, you just think that. And, you should definitely consider it. Everyone I know who is involved in Greek Life absolutely loves it. I mean, I know it's not for everyone, but, just try to find a place where you belong.. and when you find it, you'll know :)

That was my long rant about college.
Take my advice.. and, you'll def. be on the right track to success :)

Food for Thoughts :)

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