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Tips for Transitions

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Is this your first semester? Are you finding college life a lot more difficult than you’d expect?

It’s okay; It’s my first semester too and it definitely hasn’t been easy. In the first week, I was overwhelmed and anxious, but I soon found my way. It took defeating bad habits to get where I am now.

Here are 10 tips to alleviate first semester stress:

1. Get Sleep: I know this is a cliche tip, but it is important to your daily success. You should sleep at least six hours every night.

2. Do Not Procrastinate: I get it—maybe the assignment isn’t due until Friday. But waiting until the due date lowers your possibility of getting the best grade. If you must wait, try doing small portions of the assignment throughout the week.

3. Study: It is necessary. Don’t wait for your professor to tell you a test is on the way. Study what you are learning. It will not only prepare you for upcoming tests but also for in-class discussions.

4. Take Notes as You Read: Many of your assignments will be reading. To better understand what you are reading, write what stands out to you and complete any supplied review questions.

5. Always Check Blackboard/Email: You may think you don’t have any assignments for the next two days and not go on blackboard until the end of the week and then BAM! You walk in class and your classmates are giving in an assignment you had no idea about. Stay updated! Don’t go a day without checking blackboard or your email.

6. Create a Weekly To-Do List: If you have a hard time remembering what your upcoming assignments are, create an urgent and not-urgent to-do list of all your assignments for the semester.

7. Get to Know Your Peers: Keep contact with at least one peer from each class. You never know when you’re going to miss a class or have trouble with homework. Having someone to contact in a stressful moment is helpful.

8. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask For Help: It will hurt more to fail due to pride than to pass with assistance.

9. Become One With The Community: Most of you are busy, but making time for at least one group will give you a sense of belonging. Find a club or a study group that appeals to you. As the honors program says, “It takes more than good grades to be noticed.”

10. Self Care: This is the most important of all. Reserve a day to relax, watch a movie, read a book, or anything else that calms you!

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