Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Dear college students, Part 2

Emily tagged me in a "7 Deep Thoughts" meme, so I am using this opportunity to continue my elongated letter to college students before classes start in the next two weeks.

Ahem, this meme comes with an award. I'd like to thank the Academy.

1. Your life is broken up into 14 to 16 week segments. Later, you'll wish you had those bookend months of rest in between work periods, so buckle down and make them count. However, avoid whining when you have a lot of work to do because it will be over sooner than you think.

2. Introduce yourself to twenty people on move-in day.

3. Go night skiing. In a few years, you won't want to be that cold, that late at night. Plus your butt is more resilient in your late teens and early twenties.

4. Study hard your first three weeks, no exceptions. Making that a habit and letting your professor know that you care about his or her class will change your life. During those first few weeks, introduce yourself to your professors, no matter how uncomfortable it makes you.

5. Sit at a table in the dining hall that is already partially occupied (bring a friend if this makes you too uncomfortable to attempt alone) and strike up a conversation with new people.

6. Go to the "Club Carnival" or whatever your school calls the event in which the Pickle Ball, Chess, and Newman clubs set up tables and shove sign up sheets into your hands. Sign up for twice as many things as you think you can handle and go to the first meeting for each of them. You can pick your favorites later.

7. Don't carry a purse, that's a tell-tale sign of a freshman. If you're a senior or a junior, dress like an adult to set yourself apart. Your professors will respect you as the adult you are.


Allie said...

re 7 - My sister just graduated from William & Mary, and all the women carried purses, except my sister, who didn't have time between working out in the morning and class to find her purse. Even though I'm older than all those students, I still felt so unclassy on campus because I didn't have my purse or tote in one hand, and Starbucks in the other. I think it's just the atmosphere of going to school in Colonial Williamsburg.

Emily @ Day in the Life said...

Hah, I never carried a purse. But I still see a ton of people doing it with their Vera bags.. ugh. I'm good with my bookbag and riding my bike about campus. These are good. I wish I would've studied more my freshman year rather than worrying about my then-boyfriend at home. Oh the things I learn. This is a good idea though! And yay for memes!

Paige said...

Also, GO TO CLASS! I always skipped as many as I thought I could and now I wish I had really learned and really studied so many more things than I did.

Liesl said...

People carried purses and totes instead of backpacks at my undergrad... well, at least the sorority girls did. I totally decked out the backpack (or large tote).

And yes to #4! When I was a tour guide at Miami, I suggested this to all my prospective students on the tour - to introduce themselves to their professors in the first few weeks. I even said if they felt weird (or felt like they were sucking up) to go and say, "Hey, I'm so-and-so", to come up with a question from the lecture or homework and go and ask it after class or during office hours (even if they already knew the answer!). Professors totally remember this, and I would do this with every new professor all 4 years of undergrad and even if I never went to office hours again, they still remembered me at the end of the semester and were always willing to help when I did have real questions (it also helps the grade when you're on the cusp!). So this is the best advice about how to do well in classes, in my opinion :)

Julie Robison said...

I love(d) my backpack. It went with me EVERYWHERE!

Agreed on getting to know your professors. I made a point to do that all during college, and am now friends with a few of them. Also, they are more prone to help and encourage you with projects, and believe you when horrible things happen (like losing your entire research paper the night before it was due!).

Great list!

Elizabeth said...

Hmmm I guess the purse thing is a school-by-school trend.

It looks like the major consensus is: GET TO KNOW YOUR PROFESSORS! It's not brown-nosing, it's smart.

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