The bad news: Christmas Break is almost over
The good news: This is an excuse to buy new school supplies, and we all know that's secretly fun.
As you prepare for this upcoming Spring Semester, I made this handy little infographic on my tips for success.
9 Ways To Rock This Semester
1. Know What You're Getting Into:
Let's face it--the professor can make or break a class. They can turn a three thousand level class into a walk in the park and a Freshman time-waister into the worst part of your week. Websites like Rate My Professor allow students to post their past experience with professors and classes at each university.
2. The Schedule Is Everything:
Say this with me, "I know I'm not a morning person... so yes 8am really is way to early. Yes, professors matter, but if you're going to sleep through it every week-- don't waste your money. Do you work nights? Then take day classes. Spend time writing the best possible schedule, you'll have to follow it for the next few months.
3. Print The Syllabus
Old school is sometimes the best way to go about doing things. Somehow between college and high school the syllabus becomes the key to success. Write yourself notes on them as the professors go through them on the first day. If you're anything like me, you'll eventually need to remember that one reading quiz grade gets thrown out, the final is optional, or where your professor's office is.
4. Forget The Bookstore
I feel guilty for that. Please, go support some cute small mom and pop shop in your neighborhood. Because you will be able to buy yourself something nice after avoiding the campus book store. Amazon. Chegg. Half Price Book. Thrift Book. Christian Book. There is a metric-ton of websites waiting there to save you money. Please use it.
5. Student Loans & Paying For Classes
This is the worst one on the list because by the time the beginning of the semester rolls around, there is a seemingly never ending line at the financial aide office. Maybe try calling them instead? But, it really will save you a lot of stress if there is something wrong with your account.
6. Find A Community
Find a community.
Find a community.
Find a community.
My community? I have a bunch of friends through a campus ministry. But, my biggest tip would be to find a community that's unlike anything else you have done in life. Always been the book-worm? Go for hanging out with athletes. Never been the church kid? Go see if they're actually as crazy as you think they are. Just find a group you can call friends.
7. Introduce Yourself
Your professors have hundreds of students, odds are they won't remember you. But, walking up after the first day and saying, "I just wanted to say a quick hello, I'm Jacque. I'm looking forward to this class." Makes a huge difference and it's really not that hard--even for my introverted folk.
Remember when you were in highschool and you got excited about all the friends you would meet in college? Yeah. Everyone did that too. People want to talk. People want to be your friend. Just introduce yourself and smile.
8. Don't Waste Your Time
If I were you I would be rolling my eyes right now. But! I never realized how much time I was actually waisting until I tracked it. Do you have an iPhone? (if you don't... go home & get with the times). For an entire week use the stopwatch feature on your phone, every time you're watching Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime, Hulu... you name it. Track it. Then come back to this section and stop rolling your eyes at me. It's CRAZY how much time we waste without realizing it.
9. Study In Groups
"Yo. You wanna hang out and study?" "Study-study. Or hangout and do nothing study?"
I text that conversation a lot. Are you the type of person that can talk for 10 minutes and then work for 30? If you are, studying in groups really is the best way to get things done. Don't feel limited to only study with people in your classes, a lot of the time I study with music & art majors--the exact opposite of mine.
Keep Your Eye On The Prize
The bags of money on the other side? Maybe. But more likely it's real life and I'm told that can get tricky. Enjoy your semester as much as you can, meet new people and try new things. But, don't forget where you're going and get too caught up in the "college experience."