North Carolina State University at Raleigh Top Questions

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


If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself to relax and that everything is going to be okay. I was very stressed out about the prosepect of going off to college and ended up giving myself bad anxiety that resulted in panic attacks. Now that I am here, I have adapted and realized that it was silly for me to freak out. Also, I would tell myself that it is okay that I chose to go somewhere that no one else was going. I have been extremely lucky in the people I have met here, which has changed me for the better. I would also to tell my self to trust my gut because back in high school I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my life but then changed my mind a thousand times, as well as my major. My high school self needs to know that it is okay to be unsure and that you do not have to know the answer and have a set plan for everything.


Looking back on my senior year of high school, I did a lot of rushing. I was rushing to graduate, rushing to be an adult, and rushing to go to college. Knowing that I rushed my way through my last year of high school now makes me sad. I didn’t get to fully enjoy what was supposed to be the best year of high school. What I would tell my high school senior self is to slow down and take one day at a time. Graduating can wait. Becoming an adult can wait. Going to college can wait. Taking one day at a time to soak in every experience is what I wish I could do.


I would tell my self to reach out for help more than I did and earlier than I did. Use the resources there to help. Also, take a little time to have more fun.


The first piece of advice that I would give to my highschool self would be to always look for new things to try. Doing this would allow you to network with faculty, other students at higher academic levels than yourself, and discover lifelong friends that share similar interests with you. Another word of advice that I would give myself would be to get out and exercise frequently. There have been times when I wanted to go to the gym, could've gone to the gym, but instead chose to lay around and be lazy. Exercise has been to proven to enhance academic performance and is a great way to relieve stress from the body. A third piece of advice that I would give is to remain strong in my faith. SInce I came to college, the number of times that I have attended church on the weekends steadily declined until I stopped going at all. I would tell my high school self to ignore the impulses to skip church so that I may have faith as a go-to option when all else fails.


If I had the opportunity to travel back in time and speak to my high school self, I would tell him that everything would work out. Approximately a year ago today, I was crushed by a waitlist decision followed by an eventual rejection from my lifelong dream school. I was so dissapointed in myself and had convinced myself that my future was in ruin. My second choice for college was North Carolina State University and I firmly believe that coming to State is one of the best decisions I have ever made. My former letdowns had motivated me to achieve and in my first semester at North Carolina State I was very succesful academically, got heavily involved in the college community, and made great connections and friends within the Wolfpack community. Without a doubt, given the opportunity I would tell my seventeen year old self that everything would work out for the best, to learn from my seemingly monumental dissapointments, and most importantly that hard work is necessary to reach my goal.s This is an essential lesson that I wish my high school self had known, but am greatful to have learned now.


I would tell myself the people you are in high school with are not your friends. College is where you will find your best friends that truely care about you. College is where you need to be and high school does not define you. There are more people out there like you who are hard working and driven to do the right thing. Your relationship with your parents will get better and you will miss them more than you can ever imagine. Life will get harder in some aspects because your grandmother is going to pass away the first week of college and you will feel helpless but you will get through it. The loneliness that you felt during high school will subside into laughter and many cups of coffee with some of the best people in the world. Professors are not scary people. They are just normal humans who put their shoes on the same way you do and they can give you oppurtunities of a lifetime. And yes your first semester freshman year you will help write a book, and your name will be published on this book. The door is open so run to your new life.


If I traveled back to my senior year of high school the piece of advice I would give myself is to ask the teachers I had currently and past teachers what lessons they learned in college and any advice they had to give me. Many people look over the fact that teachers are not only there to teach you the state mandated curriculum but they are also a wealth of knowledge about life including college. Some of the best college advice I did get was from my Comparative Governments teacher and I imagine many different teachers would have sound advice to help ease my transition. Because I lived in a town where people had moved to from all over I could have gotten so many different perspectives to help prepare me for what was awaiting me as I arrived at college. Even such a simple act as asking a teacher to tell you about their college and life experiences can help you not only better prepare yourself for the daunting task that is college but you might also learn some interesting facts about your teachers that you otherwise would have never discovered.


Next year be different. Do not go into this thinking you can continue to not study and get A's, or thinking your teacher will curve the test. You need to work hard and be proud of the grades you achieve and not allow yourself to put your social life first. That being said, have a social life. Go out meet new people on the weekends, they will be who you go to when the stress of class becomes too much or when you just cant figure out that physics problem. Yes, you will be taking physics, math, and a lot of chemistry. However, so will most people you meet. They will become some of your most vaulable resources and will be there when you will inevibly get a grade you are not so ok with. This grade, be it a C, D, or possibly even an F, is ok as well. You are not perfect and one bad grade, while an idncator you need to study more, will not ruin you and your college career. Just remember to get enough sleep, to put forth effot, and to find good study partners to suffer though the classes with you.


Take all of your classes seriously and dedicate more time to studying. Every class is important, and failure to dedicate time to studying for every class with result in bad grades. Don't simply memorize material. Take time to understand what you're learning and why it is important to your major and future career. You need to become an expert in each class you enroll in so you can become the best professional you can in your field. Look for internships and actively seek oppertuinies within the university and within your field of interest. Make contacts and friends that are along the career path you want to follow, they will become invaluable resources in the future. Overall, find something you enjoy doing. Try a variety of sports, hobbies, and classes of study. Spend your first year without a major, and explore different fields in order to discover what you really want to study while you have time. Make sure you do well in your first few semesters, so your GPA can withstand mistakes or uncontrollable circumstances that may badly affect your GPA in the future. Overall, have fun but work hard.


If I could go back in time and give myself advice on college, I would say make the decision that is best for your future, financially and socially. I had applied to a few out of state schools, and while they were great, it really came down to the cost. While it would be great to attend an out of state school where you do not know many people from your high school, you have to look at the big picture ten years down the road. No one wants to graduate with over eighty thousand dollars of debt from student loans. Though it may seem if you go to a college in your own state or near by that you will already know everyone there, however, I can say that even though I go to school thirty minutes from my old house, I do not see these people all the time. You make new friends and introduce yourself to people who you thought you would never come across at a fraction of the price of an out of state institution. A social life can be developed whether you're close to home or across the country.


If I had the chance to time travel and talk to myself as a high school senior so I could have a more worthwhile college experience, I would advise myself to avoid procrastination, always plan ahead of time and don’t be afraid to take risks. “Be sure to use your precious college time wisely so you can feel relieved when you graduate and ready to move on into the real world,” I would tell myself. Remember what your dad said, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” “Make sure you have a backup plan because sometimes things won't always happen the way you want them to. Also remember to focus on what is in front of you but also don't forget about what potentially could happen.” In addition, I would advise “to go outside of your comfort zone sometimes and don't be afraid to take risks. No risk means no reward. Do things that when you look back on, will make you feel proud of yourself." “If you choose to follow this advice, you could have an internship for the summer, not be at home and be one step closer to reaching your career goals.”


I have only one thing to say to my high school self: DON'T BE LAZY. You can't always glide by in life. If you want real success, you must work hard for it. No one wil magically come along and fix your mistakes and grades. Your school provides you with the tools and facilities for sucess, but only you can se them to your benefit. Don't put off that homework assignment to hang out with your friend, because the deadline approaches quickly and you may miss it. Do what you can now so you can have fun later without worrying about bad grades. If you procrastonate and gof off, you WILL regret it. Yet again, you are on your own. No one to remind you. Make a plan and stick to it religiously. I can't count how many times I would have done infinitely better had I acknowleged the fact that I needed help and gotten it. You can't do it on your own, or if you could, you are one in a million. I would reassure myself that I can do it, but must always work for my success.


Look past everything that the schools are telling you. Every school is going to look roughly the same and equally amazing if you listen to what they tell you. Its what they don't tell you that makes a difference. Just because there's one or two areas the school really excells at, it doesn't mean the university as a whole is equally amazing. For example, a strong research program actually means that the professors are much more engaged in their reseach and grad students than teaching undergrads and it shows. Second piece of advice is follow your passions. It sounds cliche, but in high school the goal was to do as much as possible to be attractive to colleges. Once you're in college though theres a number of awesome clubs but to really get anything out of them one needs to put in 10x the amount of time they would have in high school. Find one or two really perfect extra curriculars and make it happen. Last little thing is stay active. Don't forget about staying healthly just because mom isn't around anymore. It can really make all the difference.


It is okay to make mistakes. After falling, picking yourself up is the first step towards the most beneficial and substantial growth that you can experience for yourself. Be reasonable, but do not forget to listen to your heart. Do not let anyone steer you wrong or force you to do something you do not want to do. Look ahead and try to predict your future, but do not forget to act in the present; have and develop a plan, but don't forget to carry out the things leading up to it. It is okay to be rooted in the past, but the future is an entire journey waiting to unfold before you. Do things not for the approval of others, but for the benefit and wellness of yourself. Ask for help when you need it, and offer help when you can. College is a period of your life in which you will find out who you are, but don't forget that you have already been someone your entire life. Be brave, be emotional, be studious, be courteous, be holistic, be determined, be clever, but above all, be happy.


First, do not take a year off after high school to have fun and work a meaningless job. Immediately make the transition from high school to college, even if its only a start in a local community college. I wanted to take a year off and it turned into several and it is one of the biggest regrets that I have. Also, develop good study habits. High school never challenged me so I never had felt pressed to study because I was ahead of most of the students and my grades were A's and B's. That practice, however, is not helping me in university. There are a lot of advanced topics that you won't understand on a quick run through a 50 minute lecture. You NEED to study and do practice problems in your free time. Last, apply for every scholarship you hear about. It is no fun having to work a job and go to class fulltime. Jobs mean no free time to participate in student activities on campus.


You’re about to be a freshman in college, it’s crazy, right? First of all, you need to do what makes yourself happy and be done with all the rest. Too much time I spent worrying about what other people thought and doing things I didn’t enjoy just because I was following along with the crowd. Once you get to college you realize none of that stuff matters anyway. What really matters in life is that you are happy with the person you have become. Stay focused, and don’t let anyone dull your sparkle. The transition into college is easy when you just let it happen. Don’t overanalyze everything. You will gravitate towards the people that you get along with, and it will be easy to create friendships that way. Last but not least, you are going to love the university you attend. You will find pride in your university, so much pride you’ll fight for it, knowing now that this is now your second home. You grow up so fast, so I ask that just every once in a while, you stop and consider how truly amazing life is, and appreciate it.


I would tell my high school self to put herself out there. She needs to make an effort to talk to strangers and make new friends. Meeting people is what college is all about. You never know what can happen unless you try, so suck up your anxieties and make an effort. Get involved in intramural soccer, because you'll miss it more than anything. Bust your butt to pass your classes. Studying does actually pay off. Most importantly, have fun and don't worry so much about what others think of you. You have four years to make mistakes and figure out who you are as a person. You should at least have fun while doing it!


As a senior, I believed that EVERY decision I made would have a lifelong impact on my personal and career. This way of thinking helped me to achieve many goals and get to where I am now ,but at the same time it caused many stressful nights of worry and little to no sleep. Therefore, there are six things I would go back in time and tell myself. Number One: Get some sleep. Sleep is a beautiful thing and I wished I would have taken advantage of the time I had to rest. If I was better rested, I would have been less stressed and been able to enjoy my last year before transitioning. Number Two: Getting an A is not critical to my existance. Sometimes classes can be difficult ,but that is okay. Classes are made to challenge you and to make you think. It is more important to learn the content and have a better understanding than to just learn the material in order to make the grade. Knowledge is more important than any amount of short term learning. Number Three: Enjoy the ride and laugh along the way. Life is too short to have days without laughter.


Apply for every scholarship you can find, because you will be broke for a very long time if you don't.


If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school student, I would tell myself to start college courses while in highschool so that my course loads would be lighter at NCSU, and I could soak up more of what I am being taught. I spent my high school years working around 50 hours a week so that I could pay for college without taking out loans (and after 5 years of college, I have officially taken out my first loan...). Instead, I think it would have been best if I had worked part time and started college extra early. I would have more loans than I do now, but I would be able to take fewer classes each semester and truly learn everything I want to.


I would advise: "You need to try to avoid procrastination in order to perform your best and feel relieved when you get your assignments done ahead of time. Also, make sure to use the resources you have to your advantage. Furthermore, failing to plan is planning to fail. You need to learn to plan things ahead of time and make sure you have a backup plan because sometimes things won't always happen the way you want them to. Focus on what is in front of you but don't forget about what could happen.” I also would advise “to go outside of your comfort zone sometimes and don't be afraid to take risks. No risk means no reward. Do things that will make you feel proud of yourself." If I had chosen to follow this advice, I would now most likely have gotten some type of internship for the summer and not be at home. I could have gone to the Career Development Center earlier before all the openings had been filled. If I had developed a plan earlier on and focused on that plan, I would probably be one step closer to reaching my career goals.


My high school years were very fulfilling but somewhat challenging in that, I spent my last two years at a different high school in a different state - my dad was in the Navy and we moved my sophomore year. In my high school do over I would push myself to become more involved in more extracurricular activities such as school clubs and sports. I was a varsity tennis player, but could have contributed and benefited from playing other sports. I volunteered and participated in the school gospel choir, but i could have done more! I am very introverted and was very anxious about meeting new friends and adjusting to the dynamic college environment. The changes made in my high school do over would have given me more experiences in dealing with others and adjusting to different environments and situations. The changes would have also helped me more successfully balance excelling academically, growing personally and experiencing more opportunities available across the college campus. I would say "prepare yourself so you can take full advantage of all the college has to offer!" The college classroom environment is different, the time management demands are different and, the opportunities for discovery learning are amazing.


Leave it all on the field! There are times (especially senior year) when it will feels like you can slack off and not try. Even if that is true, you need to work as hard as you can on every aspect of your life. Make every possible effort to improve yourself, whether it is in your academics, sports, or social life. You will regret not doing the extra credit or not studying for ten more minutes to turn that B+ into an A. You will regret not running that mile to get in shape or not trying as hard as you can in a game that doesn't matter. You will regret not going to another lunch or to that movie with that person who you thought would always be around. In high school, these things might not mean much and might be worth nothing. This past year, I've learned that these things might not matter in high school, but high school is not the end game. Giving it your all will make you a better person and prepare you for the rest of your life.


"Do what makes you happy." These are the exact words that I would tell my high-school self. I think I've always been really concerned with succeeding in whatever ambitions I may choose in life, but throughout high school I don't think I ever took the time to sit down and decide to spend my life working towards a passion of mine because I was too concerned with pleasing those around me. However, several years ago, I lost my brother, who spent a lot of his time doing what he truly loved: cooking and spreading the love of life to those around him. Ever since he passed away, I've had trouble coming to terms with myself and the path I was taking, though I recently decided that I should be following in his footsteps rather than forcifully hacking my way through a jungle of despair and uncertainty in the present field I am studying. As a result, I have started the persuit of my life-long dream of becoming a concert violinist, and though I hope to succeed in this endeavor, it would have been far easier to make this realization in high school.


Dude, if you only knew what I know now! The most important academic thing to do in high school is learn how to study. Sure you have been getting by with just completing assigned work, listening to the teacher and quickly reviewing before a test. But to achieve success in college you are going to have to read the course material, and I mean ALL the material! The class lesson in high school generally includes all you need to learn, and sometimes some other boring stuff too. The lecture in college is just the starting point for what you need to know for the tests. In college the only way to really learn the course material is to read before attending the lecture and then review notes and/or reread the text after the lecture. Although you have been successful in high school, it wouldn't hurt to read and review the material more. If you do, you will be better prepared for college - where it is absolutely necessary to study beyond attending the classes. Most importantly, if you develop good study habits now it will be one less thing to worry about as you adjust to life in college.


I would tell my high school self to try harder. I need to take my academics more serioulsy and be open to more to ideas about learning and how to learn. The biggest thing about college is that the professor will not hold your hand through the entire class, they expect hard work out of their students and they expect the students to be prepared and participate in class discussion. I would tell my high school self that get involved and become more comfortable with myself and with what I have to say about a topic. I needed to learn how not to procrastinate either. I needed to learn how to have better time management and divide up my work where I would not be up till two in the morning. I would also tell myself to become more involved in what is going on around you. That is a great way to make friends and to learn how to deal with new types of people and understand that not there are always going to be different opinions that is important to hear and take into account.


Don't worry so much. There will be days that you are overwhelmed and frustrated and don't know what to do. But in the end, worrying won't help you get anywhere. Try your absolute best at everything you do, keep your head up, and trust in God. He is the reason that I have done so well so far and He never fails to help and guide me. Prioritize your time to make sure that you have enough time for classes and studying, but don't wear yourself out with it. Make sure to have a good balance with academics and social life, and don't miss out on opportunities to get involved and have fun with your friends. Take care of yourself, keep your mind wide open, don't be afraid to be who you really are, and get the absolute best experience that you can. You're only going to be in college for so long- so take advantage and get your money and time's worth. Have fun, work hard, and stay strong in your faith.


It's funny to look back at how insecure and shy I was in high school. I think most everyone ends up "finding" themselves in college - where you're able to slide in with a group of friends that share your interests, not the ones you've just grown up with and have become close friends with by default. I certainly did - the friends I made in college are now, five years later, some of the dearest people in my life. I guess I would have told my high school self that college is of course about chosing a career path and preparing for the future, but it's also largely about defining yourself and learning who you are. I wish I could have embraced that sooner in my college career - and I wish I had become more involved in like-minded student groups and pre-professional organizations back then. Being around people who care about the same things you do is such an amazing feeling - I wish I had gotten more involved back then.


If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself that I should only apply to three colleges and that I should pick the college that I feel embodies my morals, my career goals, and has many activities to be involved in. I wasted many stressful hours my senior year applying to six different colleges. This was not necessary for me to do and if I could do it again I would only have applied to my top three. I feel that it is important to go to a college with students who can relate to my personal morals. I am overjoyed that I didn't go to the same college as most of my highschool peers. I got the opportunity to meet many different types of new people and create many lasting relationships that I wouldn't have otherwise made. It is also important to find a college that can introduce you to employers and give you opportunities to be seen. Lastly, it is extremely important to attend a college that has many activites for students. Pick something new and exciting to do, the opportunities are endless.


Going back in time I would tell my high school self to get to know myself better. Try out internships and do volunteer events for things that interest me. Find out what I like and things I don't. I would tell myself to take the challenging classes and see what happens. To not be afraid to fail. I would value my application process more and look at schools out of state and see what they have to offer. I would not let money be a huge deciding factor of my application process. And most importantly I would enjoy my last year as a high schooler. Hang out with my family and friends and soak in the memories.


Dear High school self, I wish you had kept your head in the books and not on the boys. You were doing well until you got into your first “relationship”. I wish you would have put the boys on the back burner and kept your focus on your grades. I am glad that you got the experience and learned lessons from your relationships but that should not have been your priority. I’m glad that you finally came to the realization that those boys were not going to pay for your college tuition. Make sure you stay focused and keep your grades up! You need as much money as you can get, because you know that neither of your parents can afford to pay for college. I know high school seems like a waste of time, but understand this I grind time and you can’t afford to slack off and be lazy! (Get your stuff together!)Love, Your future self P.S: Don’t forget to pray!


My advice that I would give to my high school-aged self would be to be happy and love what you do. I wouldn't give much more advice because it really is as simple as that. Based on what I have seen in the proverbial 'workplace' those who succeed are those who are happy and love what they do. That is what I wanted all along and I know that would make sense to my high school self.


Study hard to the best to your ability. If you can not figure out something, do not be afraid to ask for help. Only take classes that help you later in the long run. Only take a medium sized course load until you feel comfortable with increasing it. Invest in a good pair of rainboots and rain gear. Be not afraid to get out of your comfortable bubble and interact with more people that are different from you. Sometimes when it gets tough, look on Him for guidance. Somethings will be out of your control.


I would tell myself to spend more time studying and avoid procrastination. Also, I would take more college courses while enrolled in high school.


Make sure you apply to as many scholorships as you can!


Returning to high school as a senior would give me another year to prepare and take life more serious. I had great advisors, teachers and wonderful support at home. Everything seemed so difficult at the time, but I worked hard to keep my grades up. I would have done research on college life and how hard it is to transition and remain successful. I was always felt important and successful until I had my first class in an auditorium will 300 plus students. This gave me a sense of being invisible and less important. I also based my thoughts of college from some of my college friends experiences. They made it sound like a wonderful playland. I have yet to find the playground , and I feel fortunate. I would have made myself more responsible and held myself accountable for more than my school work. I feel this would have made my tansition a little easier. It took me almost an entire semester to feel the confidence I needed to continue. In high school I made good decision with guidance from so many peers, but now I have make them on my own to become successful. I will survive!


Attend several social events and lectures of the college that you think you like.


I would take more advanced classes to better prepare myself for the work load. I would also attend more extra curriculars to make myself stand out more. I would do more research into school s and scholarships.


I would tell myself: -to quit stressing so much, because high school is this small piece of your life that isn't going to matter to anyone at university or anywhere else in life. -to make more time for excercise, your dog, and for your family. Your mom has been strict lately because she is afraid of losing -that all my hard work for senior project was going to pay off.


IF I could give my highschool self some advice, it would be to be more outgoing and less afraid to take chances. Once you get to college there are so many opportunities and it helps to be more outgoing and sure of yourself to make sure you're not afraid to put yourself out there and work hard towards what you want to do. I don't just want to make it through college, I want to experience the process and get to know the teachers and people. It is the same with High School, just not quite as big. I wish I could have prepared myself for college more by making more friends and being involved in more clubs. I was a perfect A student, but still afraid of what was ahead. So I am telling myself not to be so worried or afraid of what is ahead. Be excited for the possibilities and don't just let them go by - take hold of them and don't let go.


If I could have gone back in time and talked to myself as a high school senior I would have told myself to be more open to possibilities I did not forsee in my life. I got to college and there were a lot of opportunities thrown at me upon arrival. Some of them I had never heard of before, therefore I did not consider joinging certain organizations. If I could go back and talk to myself I would tell me to be open to new experiences immediately upon arriving at college. Also, i would have told myself to not be afraid to look around at different oraganizations that share similar beliefs. I stuck with all of the first organizations that I tried out, even though I was not completely satisfied. I started looking around a bit more at the start of my second semseter, and have found things that I love. However, I cannot help but think I missed out on an entire semester of getting to know great people because I settled upon coming to the University.


If I were able to go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would have so many things to say! The most important thing I hope that I would hope to convey is that there are social orders in life for a reason. School comes first! We are presented with the opportunity for college training at this time because this is when it makes the most sense! When you think about it, it may not seem like it, but the responsibilities that you have at 17 and 18 are nothing compared to even five years from now, a spouse, and kids later. It is 10 times harder to go back to school while trying to work and care for a family. The pennies that you make working now, more than likely you will have nothing to show for it down the line either. Finishing college will open up doors for more money and opportunities to be your bosses boss! When you do start college don't even try the excuse of "taking it slow." You will never geaduate that way, and more than likely end up working pay check to paycheck. Get her done!


I would absolutely learn to study more efficiently. Also, I would take into consideration what exactly I want to do or at least a field I am interested in and choose a school that has more variety in majors. I love my school but I do wish I had more options. I think it is definitely important to realize just how much time you are going to have to dedicate to your studies and start preparing for that while in school.


"Do." If I could go back to talk to a younger version of myself, that is what I would say. Do everything. Do start early, so that once you are done the application, there is plenty of opportunity to search for financial aid and scholarships - some of which will not be available once you start college. Do go with your gut, but also do step out of your comfort zone. Picking a college is about finding what matches your needs, and also about going somewhere you will grow. Once you're there, keep on doing. Do make a routine - it is a lot easier to eat healthy, stay on top of work, and make time to workout . Do sit up front in your classes, and introduce yourself to professors. There is definitley truth to the warning that your grade drops as you sit farther away, and take a moment to realize how much you are paying for each individual class before you skip. Do get good grades your freshman year, because that solid GPA is essential for opening doors later. The only don't? Don't forget to enjoy yourself and explore - before you know it, you're almost done!


Take high school more serious and really listen to what the teacher are telling you. Also the study habbits, knowing that each class is not the same. One class may be way different and having to know and learn how to study to get the good grade. Taking more AP classes so that I dont have to take some of the classes now. Other then that I feel like I was perpered for college and was glad how it turned out.


So you are about to go to college I hear? Well, I have a little advice for you. Be sure to apply to as many scholarships as you can. take any AP or duel enrollment classes you can. Even if you get a low grade, its still good to try. Also, be sure to spend a lot of time with your family. They will not be around nearly as much once you leave for college. But, most importantly, make sure to spread out your group of friends. You may have plans to go to college with your best friend and think that will be plenty of friends in college, but plans my change, friends may move away or decide to different colleges. Having a large net of friends increases your chances of knowing at least a few people in the first few weeks of college. For the first few weeks, even months, having a familiar sight will allow you to adapt quicker and easier to college life. Soon you will make new groups of friends, but staying close to your old highschool buddies is extremely important. Most all, good luck and may the class curves be ever in your favor.


My advice is this: apply to a lot of schools, and visit all of them and compare them before deciding. Where you study is going to have a huge impact on your life and career. To get a true impression of a campus, you must place yourself there, on the ground, eating lunch at the cafeteria and reading the school newspaper among the working professors and students. As you'll see, each college is its own unique culture. You might be a poet looking for a vibrant writing community. Or a scientist looking for a big, productive lab to join. Whatever it is, make your visits with a "search" mindset, and note all the aspects of each campus that would help you flourish. The curricula will be very important. Ask yourself which institution is approaching your subject from an appealing angle. On your visits, did you feel surrounded by intelligent, interesting people? Don't overlook the student bodies--because these are going to be your colleagues. Also, the professors. At which schools are they at the forefront of your field? And the little things will make a difference too: a good library, gym, or health center.


If I could tell my past self anything, it would be to just hang in there. I didn't have the easiest time in high school, but I believe that all my experiences helped to shape who I am today. Also, to help with the transition into college, I would tell myself to be more open with the people I met. At the beginning of college I was too closed-off, and if I had opened up, I know I could have had an easier transition into college life. But overall, I wouldn't want anything to change, because now I am happier than I have been in a long time. All experiences, no matter good or bad, help to make the college experience, and eventually, everyone finds a group they will be truely happy with.


In high school, I found my social life taking precedent over my academic life. However, this did not present much of a problem. Grade-wise, academics have always worked out in my favor no matter how much effort I placed into them. Now that I am in college I realize that one’s focus should be primarily on academics. Although a huge part of the “college experience” consists of social events like football games, fraternity parties, and extracurricular activities- college is a place to succeed in the academic world and build a stable foundation that will aid in one’s acceptance into graduate school or in one’s success else-ware, dependent on which career path he or she is taking. My advice is to create a healthy balance between your social life and your classes and although it will be difficult to stay on track, these four years are what determines the rest of your life and should be treated as such. College classes are much more challenging than high school courses, and you can’t just “play the game” and expect A’s. Have fun, but make sure that you are completing what needs to be completed first.


Please stay strong through this hard year, keep your optimistic outlook even after all the deaths that have occurred. Even if your family doesn't believe in you and has attempted to divert you from this path, you have made it this far. College is paradise, and is a freedom from those burdens so embrace it with your work ethic and your passion. Do not let yourself feel trapped by your major, branch out and explore other possibilities. Maintain your intrinsic motivation to better yourself and your community. Make lasting friendships and never betray their trust. You have a moral compass and you know what is right and wrong, do not deviate from that. Do not rationalize your bad decisions, take responsibility for your actions. Begin every day with a loving attitude and a short-term goal. College is not only for the acquisition of knowledge, but also the experience: have fun. Appreciate what you now have every single day. Get a triple laundry sorter, it will save you from getting written up for a dirty room. Lastly, don't forget your socks and towels like I did (you look like a fool to your roommate.)

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