Muhlenberg College Top Questions

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

Georgia

If I were to talk to myself as a high school senior, I would have a lot of advice to give. I would tell myself that as time passes, school only gets harder so enjoy the moments in the present while it isn't as challenging. At the same time, although school becomes more difficult, that doesn't mean you should give up. Being resilient and perservering through hardships will only make you stronger for the future. Another important idea is that you know yourself better than others know you. If you have a strong feeling you want to major in something, pursue it rather than testing the waters first. Don't be afraid to take risks because sometimes you will surprise yourself. Being a senior in high school is one of the best times in your life. You are young, have so much potential ahead of you, and have accomplished so much. Take time to live in the moment because life is too hard when you are constantly planning ahead and judging your past. The most important thing to remember is that you are capable of doing anything and when you feel like giving up, remember why you started.

Zachary

Trust that you already are the truest and most honest version of you that you can possibly be and remain steadfast in your committment to your own thoughts, opinions, and actions. You're going to learn more than you could possible conceive about yourself. Through this learning process, you will mature, you will become independent, and you will blossom. You'll come to achieve many great things. But the you then is the you now, and the you now is the you then. There's no need to fear your future because you're living it now. Trust in yourself. Trust you'll make the right choices at the right times and know that if you don't make the right choice, the point of living is to collect experiences. You're bound for the biggest and best experience of your life. Relax and enjoy the ride.

Kristen

Dear Kristen, You may seem nervous and anxious right now. Don't worry, you'll be fine. The first few weeks may be tough. After all, you haven't been away from mom for more than a week at a time. Thankfully Muhlenberg does a fantastic job of helping you interact with fellow students, so you will meet some awesome people! Showering is miserable, but you'll get used to sharing a bathroom with 20 other girls quickly. Also, your workload is going to seem pretty intense. There's a very good chance you will be stressed out due to professors assigning 15 page papers. You may not get the 4.0 GPA you kept up all four years of high school, but remember, a 3.5 is still Dean's list and you attend a very challenging school. The best advice I could give you is to be optimistic, work your butt off, be open to new things, meet as many new people as you can, and enjoy! These are the best days of your life! P.S. Hide your food in your dorm room so your roommate doesn't eat it.

Fatima

The advice i would give myself would really have helped if someone gave me the same knowledge i know now coming into college. Following up on your financial aid is a must. Always making sure your financial aid is in order puts you one step ahead of the game. Come to college with an open mind, anything is up for grabs, get involved and always stay focused. Trust me! as much as you may think you wil not get distracted in college, YOU WILL! This is where maturity comes into play and you have to learn how to avoid some of these distractions. Last but not least learn how to take chances, this expands not only you and your knowledge in so many ways but also your lifestyle.

Georgia

The biggest obstacle in my transition was the realization that I don't live at home anymore. The comforts of my bedroom were no longer there and my room was no longer my own. Furthermore, my family lived more than three hours away. It was a big shock that took quite a while to overcome. Looking back on it now, I would give myself two pieces of advice. The first one would be to enjoy my time at home and to enjoy the comforts of home. The second one would be to talk about my fears before I leave for college. This way I could come up with a solution before it became a huge problem. Thankfully, academics haven't been too much of a problem for me. There was nothing more I could have done to prepare myself for my classes and the work load.

Alexandra

Most importantly, I would tell myself to go in with a completely open mind and not to expect anything about the college life. Every college experience is different based on the school, the people, and the individual. If you go in with set expectations it can make the transition into college very difficult and can skew your perceptions of what college really is and is about. Try to introduce yourself to different groups of people and establish a main group of friends and try to keep branching out over the duration of your time their, don't just stay within your core group. If there's a problem with your roommate, address it instead of letting it slide. The problems will escalate if you don't say anything, and you'll only regret not saying anything to begin with. Time management with classes, classwork, and extracurriculars is key. Classwork comes first but finding a balance is crucial. For those of us who thrive off of being busy, balance is everything, so possibly scheduling later as opposed to earlier classes is sometimes best.

Jessica

There are so many bits of advice I would love to go back and give myself as a high school senior, but one thing sticks out the most: I would tell myself to not worry so much about making mistakes. Back then I worried constantly about if I was making the "right" decisions, choosing the "right" school, and picking the "right" major. The fact that I had so many choices was almost paralyzing for me. What if I made the wrong choice? What if things didn't go as I had planned? Through transitioning to college, I certainly made a lot of mistakes and perhaps some wrong choices too. I changed majors, I lost some friends, and I wondered if I was at the "right" school. But the older I get, the more I see that there aren't always "right" and "wrong" choices. Many times we are presented with several good options and we just have to decide among them. To be honest, I'm still learning to not worry about making mistakes. But looking back, I can see that I would have been so much happier if I had just accepted the uncertaintis of life and smiled!

Candice

I have gotten more than I could have ever dreamed. I made life-long friends in conjunction with a quality education at a reputable institution. The professors and courses have fueled my passion to continue my education further and keep pushing myself to do the best I can in whatever endeavor I choose to pursue.

Chelsie

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a senior in high school, knowing what I now know about college life and the transition to college I would give myself quite a few pieces of advice. Firstly, I would tell myself to apply for more scholarships and try to get as much funding as possible, even before FAFSA results are completed. Secondly, I would tell myself to go where I want to go to school, not where everyone else pressures me to go. I would also tell myself to simply breathe and not worry about the academic difficulty because I can do it, I will succeed, and worrying does nothing to help anyone. Also, I would advise to order books online rather than from the college because they tend to be cheaper, and order the books early so I have them the first day of class. Lastly, I would tell myself to be excited, not nervous! Be ready to have fun and reward myself everyonce in awhile for achieving A's!

Lynn

As a senior in High School, I would tell myself to take more risks when I am making the choice in choosing the right college. Make sure to start the college search before junior year and expand your horizons. The highest-ranked or well-reputed school does not mean that it should be my top choice. Colleges all around have a lot to offer, pay attention to details like relationships between students and professors and extracurricular activities. Match your personality with your college of choice. Also, different fields of studies are ranked differently at all colleges. It is best to do research on the field of study you are interested in before making your decision. If you decided to go to big school, do not get lost in the crowd. Try to understand that college students come from a lot of different backgrounds, always keep an open mind. Meeting a lot of students at once could be overwhelming; however, everyone is in the same boat. Keep in mind there is a reason why you ended up at a certain college, make the best of it and keep smiling.

Cheryl

Cheryl I know what you are feeling and how much life has shown you dissapointments but you must continue to "push". You have all the qualities to make it but you are so pressured to be someone that you are not. It is okay to take refuge in books and less in people. You are unique in every aspect and if you allow yourself the chance to blossom you will see the difference at the next level of life beyond the walls of High School were you feel you are a misfit. College is just around the corner and eventhough you realize a lot of your friends today will not make that transition it is not you that have to follow. You are wonderful and intelligent young lady with your life just begining. Have your dream and welcome your uniquiness and let it flourish when you walk through the doors of your new life in College. Your future is nearer .....and it's in College. It is okay Cheryl trust me.

Kathleen

A college degree is a necessity, not an option. Grades are important, so keep up the good work and manage your time well. If you need to work full time, remember a college degree can be managed one class at a time, so continue to take at least one

Dan

Interview teachers in my major and see if there are any notables in that major.

Kasey

For years you've been told to do your homework. Now you're almost ready to go to college and you'll never have hear that nagging again, right? Well, maybe, but not quite yet. When making your college choice, DO YOUR HOMEWORK! There is tons of information available nowadays so take advantage of it. Find a college guide book, talk to your guidance counselor, read college websites, find out everything you possibly can. If you make an informed and educated decision, you'll pick the right place and be able to get the most out of your college experience.

Kelly

You need to visit multiple places so that you can figure out what you like and dislike about each one. That way you can compare them to each other so you know you'll make the right choice. Also, don't worry about how much tuition costs. Go to a school that you are going to be happy at there will always be financial aid and scholarships that you can apply to. Once you are at college, get as involved as you possibly can. Being an active member o my colleg community has truly helped me to take advantage of all of the opportunties that it has to offer which has contributed immensey to my college experience. I have learned invaluable lessons through the things I am involved in and have already make who I know will be life-long friends.

Rachel

I would just advise them to really look at all the schools they are applying to and find the one that feels like the right fit when walking around the campus in addition to anything else they are looking for.

Michael

When deciding on the right college, make sure you understand everything that is offered: academics, social life, learning support, housing, and the size of the college. If you are looking for professors to really pay attention to your progress, you may want to look at smaller colleges. If you are looking for a party-school and large lecture classes, then it may be in your best interest to attend a larger university (such as a state school). You do not necessarily need to know what you want to do in your future, so make sure the college you choose offers a variety of your interests.

Emily

Visit as many times as you can! Go on the college-sponsored tours, but also see if you can go on tours from students that haven't been hired as tour guides; they will tend to be more honest and open. Do overnights as well: stay in the dorm you will most likely be living in as a first year if you plan on attending a college far from home. Once enrolled, attend the college activity fairs to see all the different clubs the campus has to offer. Do what interests YOU! Be yourself.

Janette

Before you make your decision, walk around campus and try to judge how many of the students you could see yourself being friends with. It gives you a really good idea of how well you would fit in and acclimate. To make the most out of your experience, get involved! Don't just go to class and go home.

Jacob

Find the place that feels like home to you. If you're not comfortable in your college/university then you won't succeed. Also live every day to the fullest.

Thomas

I initially wanted to attend a college where many of my friends were going. Ironically, I was waitlisted and eventually rejected by the choice I was banking on to achieve that goal. Afterwards, I realized my selection approach was superficial and that I was cheating myself out of an opportunity to develop my identity properly. I was scared of branching out from the identity I embodied in high school; however, I wasn?t even content with that identity as it was a smokescreen built from my affiliations with other people. I needed to figure out who I was and what I wanted to pursue out of life as an individual. The best advice I can give prospective students on choosing a college is to go not only where they feel they can obtain a well-rounded education that also highlights their current academic interests and allows them room to grow, but also where they feel the most secure and grounded just based on the impression of the campus and how they are treated by the current students and faculty/staff. I assure you having this foundation will make the acclamation to college life easier and facilitate a rapid personal growth.

Christina

No response.

Chelsea

There is no one right school or one right experience. It is important to think about the sort of experience you're interested in having, but remember that college is about learning new things. You might find that a completely unexpectd school may give you an eye-opening experience you never expected. It is not a tragedy if you're not accepted into your rop choice school. You may learn even more about yourself at your second choice school.

Grant

Read as many books and visit as many campuses as possible. There's no way to be over-informed when making this decision, and too many students feel the need to transfer schools after picked a bad fit without doing the research. Also be open to new ideas. Sometimes the best school for you will be the last one you think to look at.

Kaitlin

I would tell parents and students to really look into the colleges. Look at the academic programs, the students, the faculty and the campus. The best way to get to know a school is to visit and talk to as many students as possible about their experiences there. You are not just paying for the classes, you are paying for the experience so make the most of it. Get involved with activities on campus and try to meet as many people as possible. The most important thing is to choose the school that will give you the best education but also where you will be happiest and have the most fun.

Wilma

Go with the place that makes you child feel the best. It's the place where you canfeel free to be yourslef and discover youself!

Brett

Find the place that feels right for you. Parent's when you child find the place where they feel the most welcome, support them in any way possible.

Brittany

Start looking into colleges early - freshman or sophomore years of high school at the latest. Use the guidance counselors at your school and various search engines on the internet. Talk to friends who are in college and people who have attended college. Match your interests and your temperment and then narrow down your selections. Make sure you visit the colleges you are interested with and spend enough time there to really get to know the campus and the atmosphere - you want to spend 4 years of your life there! Ask questions of current students, financial aide personnel, administrators and faculty - they are the authorities on their school! Don't worry if you don't know what you want to do with the rest of your life or even what you want to major in - you will probably change your mind a bunch of times any way. Go into your college experience with a great attitude and be prepared to work and work hard! Good luck!

Rachel

Visit the college. Don't just go by what the brochure says. If possible, stay overnight . If you are 100% sure of what you want to do with your life, go to a school that offers the major. If you are unsure, liberal arts is the way to go.

Dan

Check out schools by visiting them, as well as online and talking to alumni and current students.

Leah

If you're looking and nothing's sparked your eye yet - wait...that moment might come. I was looking for a cohesive, tight-knit community that I could belong to and thrive at, both academically and socially and Muhlenberg College turned out to be my perfect match. I didn't want to be another roaming face; I wanted to belong and become a part of this community. Look for strong professor-student relationships, a plethora of student activity as you walk around the campus and most importantly, talk to current faculty members and students in addition to the administration officers. College is supposed to be the most wonderful time in your life, and that's exactly what I've found.

Kaitlin

The best thing to assess when visiting campuses is to ask what kind of resources do they provide to students who are not at the top of their class upon graduation. Some colleges boast excellent job placement afterwards yet fail to mention that this is only true for students whose grades are above a 3.5. Even if you are an excellent student who can achieve good grades, asking this questions allows you to get a better understanding of the quality of resources they provide for post-graduate job placement.

David

Chances are you won't get it right the first time. You may think you know what you want to do for the rest of your life, and you may make your college decision based on that, but once you start freshman year you may learn that you were wrong. If that happens, don't sweat it. Make sure to work hard and get good grades, and if you do that, you can always transfer. It happens to a lot of people, and they end up happy and successful.

Caitlin

make sure it is a school you see yourself at for the next 4 years of your life because it will be your home until you graduate.

Nicholas

The best advice I can give is to find a college where people smile and laugh alot. I believe it can be as simple as that because such a positive environment fosters a passion to learn. I love going to my classes because the professors are ridiculously smart, but yet can be lighthearted and joke around. An environment that is strict and serious leads to boredom and apathy. Social life on campus should not be an escape from academic life, but an extension of it. A lot of what I have learned at college has come from having late night discussions with good friends. Learning really can be wonderful if you dedicate yourself to giving 100 percent. Along those lines, it is important to never stop questioning. Professors love students who are so engaged that they bring their own ideas to group discussion rather than just sitting there. In short an optimistic environment fosters learning, a kind of learning that can be rewarding and contribute to personal growth.

Helena

While it is hard to know what you want out of life when you're in high school, it's important to get a sense of yourself, and the environment you like to be in. Visit schools for a whole weekend, try to see a sports team play to get an idea of school spirit and the campus community. Walk around, eat in the cafeteria, shop the bookstore, talk to people, hang in a student area, sit in on three different types of classes, visit the career center and community service center to see what options are open to you...these are the best ways to figure out what is really happening on the campus, and the best way to learn how you will feel there.

Sara

Pick the school that you feel comftorable at, and you could easily see yourself there. Don't pick a school that is too easy or too hard for you. Go on as many college tours as possible, take notes and pictures so that you remember what the school is like. Decide if you would like a city or a rural environment. If you are shy, go to a small school where you won't get lost in the crowd. I would reccomend liberal arts schools, so you can try a bit of everything if you are not sure about your major. Make a resume, practice intervewing, interview at schools, and prepare questions to ask. At schools that you are seriously considering, definately do an overnight stay with a student and/or attend a class or two so that you can get a real sense of what that school is actually like. Get your application and teacher reccomendations in as early as possible especially for rolling admissions. Apply early to your #1 choice school, you will have a better chance of getting in. Get involved with clubs and keep yourself busy, it builds resumes, experience, and time management skills.

Karly

I would suggest going to a school that wants you as much as you want them. Going to a school that does not give you much financial aid and requires you to take out many loans indicates that you are not the perfect fit for the school. This may not reflect poorly on you or the school, but just illustrates that it may not be the best school for you. Go somewhere where you feel comfortable, where you can picture yourself having the best and worst days and being okay. A place that will either help you towards your career goals or towards figuring out what you want to do.

Kimberly

I would advise to both parents and students to actually visit schools when considering which colleges would interest the students. Look into what "open house" events are available as well as any sports clinics if the student is interesting in being a college athlete. Also, be sure to look at ALL apsects of the school : what majors/minors are avaible; what are the departments like; how large is the class; how is the cultural diversity on campus; what division is the school? When choosing a school, do not decide on one school because there is only one thing you really like there. Make sure there are a lot of things that draw you to the school because that one thing could always fail.

Dana

go with your gut!

Sara

When deciding on a College, it is important to know yourself as a student and a person. Your college experience is going to shape you. It is essential to choose a school that meets your academic and social needs. Make a list of the most important things that you are looking for in a College. The list should include some academic criteria and then some extracurriculars or things you like to do. If you love Biology and you also want to play football, find a school that offers both. They key to happiness in college is going to a school that fits your personality. You need to be happy in and out of the classroom. No one else can really make the decision for you. In the end, the choice is yours. At one of your college visits, you'll probably get a really good feeling about that specific school. LISTEN TO IT!! There must be some reason that it is standing out. Go back to the school again and again. If that good feeling is still there, then the school is probably right for you. Once you find your school, do everything you can to make yourself stand out.

Alison

Take advantage of every opportunity you are given. Dream big and hope for the best. Give as much to yourself as you do to others. With trust in yourself and your decisions you will take yourself to places you can never even imagine.

Noel

You just have to find the school that feels right and get involved as soon as you get there!

Cory

College is a once in the life time opertunity, make the right chooce and do not worry about finacal issues. Let your heart lead you to the right place that fits you the best, and dont worry about any other issues; if it is the right place for you then all the issues (i.e. distance, cost, friends, etc.) will not matter because you will be happy and enjoy your time at that school.

Paul

Be honest about what you want. For students, make sure you are going to a college or university that feels comfortable to you and, if you don't know what you want to major in, has a wide variety of choices for you to explore. For parents, listen to you child. You're not the one going back to college, they are. Listen to their wants and needs, support their choices, give them advice, not commands, and make sure to help them when they need it.

Jaclyn

The best advice I could give parents and students regarding finding the right college is as follows: 1) Make a decision based on what feels comfortable and right, not based on prestige of the college 2) When a decision is made, do not look back and make the most of the decision made. Students can make most of the college experience by getting involved early on in their academic career in different social actitivies, taking advantage of the tremendous and valuable resources that faculty can provide (i.e. research opportunities), and just being themselves!

Ann

Visit and apply to as many colleges as you possibly can-- that way, if you decide once you've been accepted that you're looking for something new in your future college, you'll have a lot to choose from.

Thompson

Relax. Parents, be aware of your natural tendency to impose or to put ideas and wants into your son's or daughter's head, and don't do it. Be there to give objective feedback, information, and emotional support. Students, be honest with yourselves. Be really honest. Someone (a guy named Walter Anderson) once said that "the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves," and I think he's right -- at least, that's been true for me. Try to clear your mind of all your worries and concerns about the future, especially those concerning what everyone else may think of your decisions, your lifestyle, and your guiding philosophy -- clear your mind of all this, and ask yourself: "What do I love?" The first thing that popped into your head just now when you read that, go for it. Make it your central and even your sole criterion in your college decision-making process, and in your life decision-making process as well. Have fun.

Jordan

Look at every school with an open mind. You'll know when you found the right school. It will feel like the place you want to be. Don't let your parents make the decision. Parents just need to be supportive and act like a resource. YOU MUST VISIT THE SCHOOL!!!

Ashley

Make sure that you take into consideration EVERYTHING the college has to offer: like academics, housing, campus size, proximity to home, availability of off campus resources, campus dining, athletic facilities, etc. All of these factors are extremely important because college is not only a place for you to get an education, it is your home away from home for at least four years. If a college does not allow freshman to have cars on campus, make sure there is some kind of transportation available to take you to the grocery store, out to eat, or to different social events. Finally, before your choose which school to attend, carefully reflect on how far away you actually want to be from home. The transition to college can be difficult and most students underestimate how much they will actually miss home when they come to college. Its okay to want to be near home. Just make sure that is part of your criteria when choosing a school. Perhaps most importantly, when you arrive at college, be sociable, make new friends, and don't be afraid to try new things if you've always wanted to do them. That's what college is for.