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Kansas State University

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

I would advise future students and their parents to think about every aspect of life that matters to them in considering a college campus. First of all, consider your education because after all that is the point of going to college. Make sure the colleges you are considering have a decent program for what you want to do. But in addition to learning that takes place in a classroom, there is much experience and learning that occurs outside out of it. If you are a very social and involved person you may consider a bigger campus with more activities to participate in, whereas if you are more introverted, or just less outgoing, consider a smaller university, or one with smaller class sizes. Consider your political and religious viewpoints, and consider what the main religious and political views of the people will be at colleges you are considering. If you are interested in sports, consider the recreational facilities and intramurals, or club sports teams. Also, talk to people to go to each campus that you are considering. Personal interaction with current students at a school is the best possible way to find out what your potential undergraduate experience could be like.

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The most beneficial experience I have had at Kansas State University is my involvement in K-State's Smurthwaite Scholarship and Leadership House. The house consists of 46 girls in cooperative, government living. Over the last year and a half, the house and the girls who live here have become like a family. I believe having a "home away from home" in college is important to anyone's success, especially at a larger university. I know I would not have been as successful as I have been without the love and support of the people in the house. I also believe organizations at K-State, such as Smurthwaite, give students numerous leadership opportunties. I, for example, will be serving as Smurthwaite's President for the Spring 2011 term. I am also an Ambassador for the College of Engineering and a Student Mentor for Electrical and Computer Engineering Orientation. Availability of opportunities like these that enhance leadership are one of the benefits to being at K-State. Additionally, numerous companies participate in career fairs here because they know K-State graduates are prepared for work in the real world. K-State is the beginning of a successful life and career.

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My advice to parents: You need to be three things; involved, supportive, and understanding. Being involved in your son or daughter's decision of where to attend college is extremely important to your child. You will be able to help them with questions and hopefully agree with them because you will know what they based their decision on. Even more importantly, being supportive of their decision is critical. Most teen's want to be able to make their own decisions, while still obtaining support from their parents. Also, being understanding that your child is becoming an adult is crucial. If you can achieve these three roles, the transition into college will go more smoothly both for you and your teen. My advice to students: You need to be proactive, patient, and understanding. In order to find the right college for you will take work. You have to be proactive in researching schools to find the perfect fit. Which means you must also be patient in your search. Also, you need to be patient with your parents. This transition might be hard for them to accept, therefore you must be understanding of their feelings and actions during this time. Good luck!

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Brandi, the myth that you hear about college is just high school with dorms is absolutely false. However, you can have just as much fun like you are having in high school thus you have to work harder than a normal office job. But before you reach college there are a lot of preparations needed to get there. First make sure you have excellent ACT/SAT scores because you can get extra scholarships and grants this way. Also make sure you have several college entrance essays written, most colleges use the same essay topics. By completing these things early, you can focus more on selecting colleges. Then around early October, start applying for all your top schools, make sure you have set aside money or fee waivers for your application fees. Depending on the schools acceptance letters should start arriving sometime between December and April. While you are waiting on the acceptance letter to arrive, in January after your parents have received their tax return forms go ahead and apply for FAFSA. Then throughout the remainder of high school and summer, apply for more private scholarships. Then make sure you have fun and relax before the big arrival date.

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I am only a freshman, but the most important change for me was taking responsibility for my actions; (studies, attending class, volunteer efforts), basically trying to make the right choices. I no longer have my parents to push me, I must do it myself. I participate in many activities and this has been an excellent way of meeting other students. Getting invovled is definitely a recommendation to any new student. Learning to set a schedule, plan activities and classes, has been rewarding, but a little nerve racking at times. College provides you the atmosphere to learn and grow as a person. Who I was entering college and the person I become upon graduation will seem like two different people. But that's the exciting part of the college experience. It has only been a few months for me since graduating high school, but it already feels like a long time ago. You adpat and change quickly, the work is hard and the responsibilities are great. I am much more assertive now than I was only a few months ago. College has been a wonderful experience so far. I look forward to new challenges during my college expereince.

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It is said that getting a college degree will open new opportunities in life. What is not credited enough, however, are the opportunties that arise during the college experience. I am not emphasizing the obvious-the educational benefits such as a large library and endless academic resources, but instead, the learning opportunities regarding life. College students are suddenly forced to create lifestyles for themselves. Between juggling scholastic obligations and neverending campus activities, college students are expected to live. Some might get lost in that mess. I did. The first year of college, my schedule was filled to the brim everyday with studying, meetings, hanging out, and the occasional meal or two. It was during my first summer home that I realized that I had been living too quickly and losing track of my goals. My desire to dedicate my life to humanitarian architecture overseas was reignited. My schoolwork has new meaning, my busy schedule is more fulfilling, and among countless other things, going to college has taught me that my tendency to live fast was hindering my ability to focus on what matters in my life.

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By attending college I have learned who I am. There are many college students who go to college because their parents or job told them or wanted them to. I attend SCF because I want to. I have learned that I’m not a procrastinator, getting things done by due dates helped me establish and undertake this characteristic. Another key to success is, getting help through research. Not only for a college essay is research important; take this scholarship for example, without a strong effort in researching scholarships, I would not be able to apply for this and other opportunities. Researching is also major part of any career. Being on the ball; without being an active student in school a person could miss important deadlines or opportunities. Applications for graduation, scholarships, clubs, ect. are all important. Being ahead of the game is my second favorite characteristic college has given me. With that said, my favorite characteristic I posses is my organization. I apply this to every aspect of my life. School, work, and my personal life all show signs of a dedicated motivated person; and I have only college to thank.

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College is a wonderful experience full of learning and growth. Discipline yourself and put your heart and soul into your studies. It will pay off in the future. Some people try to breeze their way through, but you will get so much more out of it if you actively participate and want to learn. You will gain knowledge and skills to help you in both your personal and professional life. Treat others with respect and stay involved in campus and community events. Some classes will be hard. Do your best and do not be afraid to ask for assistance if you need it. Pace yourself in your homework, because it can certainly pile up. Take the initiative and work gradually, piece by piece. Set goals and reward yourself when you reach them. Stay on top of your education and make sure you stay interested in what you are studying, but also do not forget to relax and enjoy the college experience. Make friends and join a club or association. You are a hands-on learner, so be involved in activities that can strengthen your knowledge and skills by applying what you learn to pratical situations. College is worth the effort.

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The most important thing to do when choosing a college is to give yourself room to grow. The average student changes college majors more than once, and will change careers six or seven times after that. Choose a college and a class schedule that will prepare you for all the unexpected ways your life can change. Look for a school that is strong not only in your chosen major, but also in several other areas that interest you. Remember that when you walk across the stage 4+ years from now, you will be a very different person from who you are today. Choose a college that will support you through this transition. While in college, take advantage of the best your college has to offer. Take classes with top professors, even if they're not required. Find an extracurricular activity to be passionate about. Take time for electives; what seems unimportant right now might become your focus later in life. The college years are a time of dramatic change and growth. It's impossible to know where you'll end up. A solid educational foundation will give you the tools you need to succeed at whatever you choose to do.

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Over the past year and a half that I have been a student a Kansas State University, I have learned a tremendous amount about what it takes to successfully transition into life as a college student both inside and outside the classroom. Being the youngest of six children, all of whom have graduated from a four year institution, I thought I had a descent grasp on what to expect when I went to college, but I was mistaken. Some of what I had learned from my older siblings was applicable in relation to school work and professor expectations, but the biggest trasition and something that can only be learned through personal experience was social life as a college student. Being on my own I had to make decisions for myself and live with the consequences either positive or negative. If I could go back and give myself advice as a high school senior, I would say don't worry about the academics because really they are no different, but rather prepare yourself mentally to be challenged socially and morally. College is a time of growth and learning, but be careful and watchful of yourself and what you choose to do.

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