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Cedarville University

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What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

If I was able to magically appear to myself and tell myself what i know now about college life. I would first tell myself to find a roommate before I got to college. Then I would tell myself to save the pain and heart ache of being a music major and skip right on over to psychology. Then I would remind myself, that is it not all about me, and there are others out there who are in need. As a freshman I was over zealous for my opinions and I scorched some bridges because of it. I would remind myself that no matter what you think you should always objectively listen to the other side. I also would also tell myself is that my health is going to drastically decline and not to worry about it, but to be healthy and eat well and exercise so as to minimize the problems coming. I would also tell myself that not everyone is going to like me and thats okay. I think I would lastly tell myself to take more AP classes and study really hard to get scholarships so my parents don't have a huge burden on their shoulders.

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The most important thing you need to do is really build good study habits. Teach yourself to study when you don't feel like it and when other people are doing fun things. It will be very helpful for you to do this now while you are still at home; you have the most time and the fewest distractions. Learn to study a little bit every day, rather than saving it all for the night before the test. Keep up with readings. Write down the information that seems obvious to you at the time; it will be extremely helpful when it comes time for the final exams. Learn to be disciplined now; it will be your life-saver at college. Really appreciate your free time and time to sleep. Unfortunately, much of this will go away while you are in college, especially since you want to be a pre-med major. Appreciate and spend time with you family and friends; you will not realize how much you will miss them until you are away. Finally, make Bible reading and prayer a daily part of your life. It will be a valuable habit to have.

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Make sure it's your choice, and not your parents decision. While Mom and Dad really want you to go to this school, make sure you go because you want you. You're the one who has to live their 24/7 anyway. Also, extend your friend group. Don't limit yourself to your roommate and the people in your hall. Campus is huge, and you'll be surprised how many great people there are out there. Besides, your roommate may move on next year and then you would have to start from scratch. Get to know the sights and thrills of the town around you. Don't wait until your senior year to realize that the next town over has a really great coffee shop. Start working ahead on reading before your sophomore year. Don't be afraid to write in books (as long as they aren't rented!). When fun things come up, pick with discretion. Don't always drop your homework to have fun, but don't study without any quality friend time, either. Oh, and never change what you wear because someone else finds it weird. It's who you are. Do what you want.

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If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school senior regarding college and transitioning into it I would tell myself four things. First, listen to your parents. They know what is best for you and even though you’re scared to commit to a place where you know no one, you will be just fine. Second, relax!! Do not be so worked up about being away from friends and do not be so worried about not getting good grades. Third, study! Reading as much, if not all, of the material for a class as possible. KNOW the material inside and out. Study hard and put studying ahead of most activities. And fourth, HAVE FUN! You’re at college to meet life-long friends and make memories that you will explain to your children in the future. Study for your classes but every now and then take a break and go have some fun. College is for preparing you for a career. It’s also for making friendships that you will continue long past graduation day. It is a place to learn about yourself and to grow. It’s a life changing place.

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First of all, it is important to consider what kind of person you are, what you're looking for in a college, and what you want your experience to be like. Do some research on what colleges and universities fit this description. Get started early! What college you attend is a very important decision, so you do not want to put it off. When in doubt, apply to more colleges than you think necessary. Decide what colleges are on the top of your list and go visit them. If you can, stay on campus during your visit to get a better idea of what life is like on that campus. Also, consider how much each college costs, and decide whether or not spending more will be worth it. As far as making the most of your college experience, I think it is vital that you find friends that balance their studies with their social life well. You want friends that know how to have fun but at the same time, know how much work they need to do to stay on top of all their classes. Be social, because we were made for community.

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High school! Not just hish school no it is you senior year! It's the time to live it up and to enjoy your friends! Or at least that is what everyone says: easy classes and freedom to do whatever you want. However, my senior, contrary to what others said, was not at all like that. Studying was not only a regular rutine., but was all I did besides playing soccer in the fall. If I were to go back and give myself advice in high school I would probably tell myself to find a healthy balance between doing my homework and having a social life. Granite school is definately important, but from my college experience so far, you don't want to be the kind of person that only studies and never goes out with friends. Not only do you get discouraged or what not but it also doesn't make for a college experience. So mainly to helo myself prepare better for college I would tell myself to make sure to create a healthy balance of work and play, and to maybe go to the school basketball or football game once in awhile!

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During high school I was super desirous to make a 4.0. I was obsessed with grades and lost a lot of joy by worry. I would tell myself to enjoy the moments more and not worry so much over high school perfection. I missed out of a lot of friend time and relationship building time as I was so focused on grades. I do believe that grades and studies are important, however, my obsession with them did more harm than good as I am learning now how to befriend others and feel comfortable in groups. I believe my transition to college would have been so much easier had I worked on social skills a bit more. My grades are still important, but I am learning that the time I spend with others, caring about their needs and interests is making me a better person. People should have been more of a priority in my life. I believe that rubbing shoulders with others have sharpened me as an individual and I have grown much through the relationships with my peers as well as the professors I have befriended.

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One thing that I would stress in deciding on the right college for you is to make sure that you know what you're getting into financially, and relating to the distance from your home. My college is 7 hours away from my home and is more expensive than I realized when trying to choose where I would spend four years studying. I wish that someone had told me, or made me more aware of the overall cost of college prior to my enrollment. I would also possibly recommend attending a community college for a year or two before going to a four-year school if money is an issue for you like it is for me. In addition to the idea of community college there are also so many options for CLEP tests that I never realized until it was too late. Take advantage of those options if you can in any way. In addition to the financial stress of paying for college, being 7 hours away from my family and friends made things even more intensely stressed. So, just be sure you know what you are getting into!

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I would try and beat it into myself to take my education seriously, every single day of classes, and to really focus on my work. As a high school senior, I didn't really think about college other than where I would end up going in the fall. My freshman year came and went; I look back on it and see that I could have put so much more effort into my studies. I would also tell myself to calm down about leaving home without my family and friends to help me. I'd reassure myself that new friends were waiting there for me and were just as nervous as I was. Another thing I would say to myself is to keep going even when your world seems to crumble. College, and life in general, is hard; It takes endurance, diligence, and faith to get through the tough times, but it is very possible. But most importantly, I would tell myself to have fun and broaden my horizons; I'd urge myself to meet as meet many new people and to mature into the person I was meant to be, enjoying every minute of it.

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If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I wouldn’t say much but would rather listen to what my high school self would say to me. The reason behind this is that I would be very interested in knowing exactly what was motivating me back then to make me who I am today. I would listen to what pushes him to look for better things in life when good isn’t good enough. I would ask about the mindset that he had and how it led him to success. I would ask why simple things such as respect, loyalty, and responsibility mattered so much to him even though he never had much of anything to do with anyone. I would ask myself these questions because it is too often that we forget who we are and what made us into who we are today. In regards to this, I look back at myself today and thank that high school senior for doing his best to prepare me for the position that I am currently in. And that would be exactly what I would say to myself, “Thank You.”

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