Personal Tips on Surviving College

By Andreas Fanos on February 22, 2023

College is quite the experience from how it is depicted in movies and TV with partying, adventure, drinking, and lounging around with friends. Despite all the fun, especially with dorming and the whole experience, it can be a turbulent and stressful time for some. Here are some tips I can share from my own experience and how to not be overwhelmed with everything.

College is a time for finding yourself and it can be stressful not knowing what your major is or will be heading into freshman year. It can be good to go over your strengths and take various classes. People can also get the urge to major in a subject they do not care about just for the money, although this can be a big mistake because working in the field will not be enjoyable and lead to sadness and burnout. Students should visit the career center on campus and identify what their major will be after freshman year.

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Another plight of college is not being overcome with distractions. Many can arise, such as wanting to see friends, go out on the weekends, and play sports on campus, but the work will pile up over time and be daunting to catch up on. It is essential to strike a balance, not be overcome with distractions and set aside time to complete assignments and study for tests/quizzes. From my own experience, work can quickly pile up. One semester I took 18 credits to catch up and I did not perform as well because of all the required work and distractions. I was not able to strike a balance and it was one of my worst years grade-wise. I was on academic suspension after that but was able to get out of it and get good grades by setting aside time on weekends in my room to do work and not take so many classes to be overwhelmed. It can be essential to carry a planner and jot down what is due on what dates to keep track of everything.

One aspect that many know about college is the freshman 15. Going away to school with a variety of on-campus meal options can lead to weight gain. Pulling all-nighters and staying up late, in general, can cause the urge to eat for added energy and drinking on the weekends can do it too. I know some people personally who have gained well over the notorious 15+ pounds from eating and drinking at college. There is a lot of power and freedom living on campus being able to eat what you want when you want.

One of the most important ways to survive college is not taking on absurd amounts of student loan debt that can leave you shackled and stressed for years and years. High student debt is a problem that can delay things in your life for a long time. Finding out ways to afford college such as working a job on campus or working in a restaurant or store close to the college’s campus all serve as great options. Especially nowadays, finding a remote job while in school can equally be a blessing if someone does not have reliable transport or a car.

People need to understand that college is a stressful time but it truly contains some of the best years of your life where you find out a lot about yourself and meet some of your best friends for life. You should get work done but also have fun and enjoy the 4 years. And before I forget, do not skip laundry day on the weekend and let it pile up.

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