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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Pro tips to survive freshman year


    (left to right) Freshmen Amber Casillas, Maggie Orse, Molly Drnec, and Emma Thompson take a break to relax from shopping for textbooks and school supplies in the bookstore on Sunday, Aug. 21 The students stress how crazy the past couple of days have been for them with moving into dorms and getting ready for the first week of school, among other things.

    College will probably be nothing like high school. With tens of thousands of people driving, walking, biking and skateboarding around campus, it almost feels like a small city within a city rather than an academic institution. You may have graduated with a class of 300, but now you have twice that amount just in some of your lecture classes. It’s a big change for most students, and difficulties can arise when learning how to navigate this new environment.

    Since they definitely know what they’re talking about, wildcat upperclassmen have decided to share a few pro tips. They’ve survived freshman year and learned a lot, and now they want to pass on some of that knowledge to new students.

    John Maerling, a business management senior, advises new students to take advantage of the resources here at the UA.

    “The UA gives you every opportunity to succeed,” Maerling said. “All you have to do is put in the work.”

    RELATED: Super Cool News: How to survive syllabus week 

    Maerling’s advice shouldn’t be ignored as the UA offers so many resources available for students to succeed. The Think Tank offers free tutoring in subjects like math, English, chemistry and more. Academic advisors can help make a plan to help you figure out what classes to take to graduate on time. Office hours are also a great way to get to know your professors and clear up any confusion you may have about class material.

    Scheduling is also a confusing and difficult aspect of college life. You get to create your own schedule for each semester, from choosing which general education classes to take to adding a minor.

    Kathryn Chung, a neuroscience and cognitive science junior, advises students to plan out their classwork and scheduling and make sure to make time for themselves.

    “Know yourself and know what times you learn best. Maybe you’re a morning person and would love to take 8 a.m. classes every day,” Chung said. “Or maybe you can’t even focus, let alone sit through an hour-long class, before noon.”

    Chung emphasized using your own self-understanding when planning for the next semester and creating a schedule that actually works for you.

    Chung also advised freshmen to get involved on campus, to be open-minded to new opportunities and to find their tribe.

    The UA has hundreds of clubs and there has to be at least one or two that spark your interest. Joining a club is a good way to meet people with similar interests or beliefs who could ultimately become your best friends in college.

    Kiana Murphy, a psychology senior, urges new freshmen to manage their time wisely. Time management is one of the most important skills to have, and it’s often difficult for new students to balance classes, studying, clubs, sports, friends and more.

    Lots of students purchase a planner or a calendar to keep track of all their responsibilities.

    And, while classes are a priority, don’t forget to have fun.

    “Enjoy college,” Murphy said. “Don’t take life too seriously at this point. Let these be your most enjoyable four years.”

    Follow Taylor Brestel on Twitter.

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