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By Bhalachandra Sahaj

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Hi everyone!

student owlIf you are already in your second or third year of studying in college, then you don’t need to read further, as you have survived the dread of the first year and can now relax a little. But, if you are a high school student who just entered a college or university, and whose freshmen year is yet to end, this post is for you. Take the following pieces of student wisdom into consideration, and you will be fine. Probably.

1. One of the best things you can do after entering a college is making friends with senior students. There are always at least a couple of seniors willing to get acquainted with freshmen, so your task is to find one or some of them. Why is it great? Seniors are vessels of college wisdom—they can teach you a lot of things that no professor will tell you about. For example, your senior friends can give you a hint or two about which people in the college to avoid, and whom to get along with; which professors should not be messed up with, and which professors are rather relaxed; how to perform best in this or that class; what’s going on in the college’s sport life, and so on.

2. Create support for yourself. When you become a freshmen, it usually means you move to a different city, away from your family, friends, and habitual stuff. This can be stressful at first, so try to establish new connections as soon as you arrive to your new residence. This refers not only to college, but also (and mainly) to life outside of it.

3. Do not let yourself be deceived by stereotypes like, “Being a student means all fun and going wild” or something like this. A lot of students, as soon as they get rid of parental care/control and gain a new environment, experience a strong social disorientation; for some reason, it usually leads to an unhealthy lifestyle: drinking alcohol, smoking marijuana, and so on. Although this might be seen by students as socializing, gaining authority, breaking the system, or living a free and enjoyable life, in fact it’s poisoning yourself and developing habits that later you will have no idea how to get rid of. Better do something useful: go into sports, or learn to play electric guitar and start a student punk-rock band, if you feel rebellious (yeah, it’s harder than smoking pot after classes, but it’s far cooler).

4. Organize your studying and general activities, as it is something that will give you headaches later if you miss it. Just do it—create a plan, and stick to it.

5. Save your money. Due to the reasons described in point #3, freshmen students tend to lose control over their finances. The fact it’s now themselves who decide on the amount of money to spend (and not their parents) make first-year students do stupid things. It is good if it does not lead them to gambling in attempt to cover enormous expenses. To avoid being broke all the time, count your monthly finances and plan accordingly.

P.S. Oh yes, this is maybe none of my business, but be careful if you fall in love. You won’t believe how easy it is to become a father or mother all of a sudden.

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