Hello Girl Bosses! Now that I am going into my third year, I have been looking back on how I spent my time, how I handled my work and my emotions, and how I’ve grown and changed from all of the experiences I have had. I have had two very different years and although I am not an expert, I have learned things that I could have used to make my first two years a little easier.
DO NOT SKIP CLASS
This was the NUMBER ONE thing that I wish I knew. I thought that in college attendance wasn’t mandatory and therefore I didn’t always have to go, but I just had to study and do the assignments. I WAS SO WRONG! Most classes in college do take attendance, whether that be by signing a sheet or using clickers. You also learn so much better when you actually go to class, pay attention and take notes. Even though they post the lecture slides online, the Professors say crucial things in their class that they do not post online.
Skipping one class makes it so much easier to skip another one and another one.
SAY NO TO EARLY MORNING CLASSES
I was always a morning person, I always woke up with ease and started my day on a good note. THAT CHANGED FAST! In college you are most likely going to be staying up late either hanging out with your friends or studying. When you stay up till 2 or 3 in the morning watching movies, or hanging out in your friends dorm room, or even puling an all nighter to finish a paper, an 8 o’clock class the next morning is killer. I learned that no matter what time I fall asleep I can always be up and awake by 10 o’clock in the morning. So for the next three semesters I tried my hardest to schedule classes that were after 10. I liked to have afternoon classes because I can wake up and enjoy a cup of tea, watch an episode of tv or do a little extra studying and be fully prepared for class. Also a GREAT BONUS for having afternoon classes is that it is almost impossible to sleep through them.
DO NOT BUY TEXTBOOKS
My first semester I wanted to buy all of my textbooks because I thought it was cool to have important books for class. I also didn’t want to buy the wrong textbook from another site. In all of my major classes the textbook was the most important thing I had, I used them to take notes in and to clarify things I didn’t quite understand or hear in class. What has saved me so much money was RENTING my textbooks. I learned to wait until the first week of classes before I bought my textbooks because some Professors might post the articles online, or require a certain textbook that is not listed, or not even require a textbook at all. You can also try to find your textbooks for free online before you look to rent a textbook. Chegg and Amazon are the best sites to use to rent or buy textbooks. Most bookstores even price match textbooks that you show them from Amazon or Barnes and Nobels. Chegg also has a feature where you can get help with homework and study material with the textbooks that you rented from the site. I highly not to buy textbooks unless you really have to, or want to keep the books for further semesters.
IT IS OKAY TO CHANGE MAJORS… MULTIPLE TIMES
I have changed my major multiple times and I started to get worried that I wouldn’t have enough time to finish all of my classes before I graduated. I learned to not stress over the fact that I kept starting over again because I kept reminding myself that I am going to college to find something I love and to make a career out of it. I say it is okay to change your major so that you can find what you are passionate about. You don’t want to be stuck for four years of college taking classes that you don’t like or that will lead to a job you will hate. If you are going to spend your time and money in college, make sure it is going to lead you to a better life and a job you will love going to everyday.
PLANNERS WILL SAVE YOUR LIFE
I believe the one reason why I do so well in school is because I use a planner and stay organized. It is important to put all of the due dates, quizzes and tests into your planner once you get all of your class syllabuses. I also found it helpful to put all of the homework assignments, study schedules and goals into my planner because it helped me have a smooth run day where I can accomplish a few things. A planner also really helps keep you on track with your due dates and assignments, and it honestly taught me a lot about time management and how important it is.
I also suggest getting a full calendar outside of your planner that you can keep in your dorm room or in your phone so you never forget the most important dates.
DON’T LET A COUPLE OF BAD GRADES TEAR YOU DOWN
In high school I had a 4.0 gpa and I even graduated a year ahead of my class. I was used to academics being easy for me and receiving good grades. Once I went to college, I noticed that I actually had to try a lot harder than I was used to. I got a couple of bad grades my first semester and I really let it affect me for the next two semesters. I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get into any graduate schools, or get a good job because I didn’t do well ONE semester in college. The fear that I had about not being good enough because I didn’t do well kept haunting me throughout the next two semesters, and even though I did better those semesters I still didn’t do as well as I wanted. Until I reached my last semester sophomore year. I told myself that I can’t live in the past, but instead I need to pick my head up, realize the goals I have and go for it. So I picked myself back up again, I studied as much as I could and tried to be as organized as I could and I brought my GPA to a 3.94. I knew I had the potential but I was clouded by a couple of grades. Don’t let a bad grade, a bad semester or even a bad year tear you down. Only you can make a difference in how you want your life to be. If you keep a positive attitude and know you did the best you can then nothing is stopping you from achieving greatness.