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Northern Kentucky University

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

College is about the experience. It seems many parents/incoming students are so focused on the academics aspect of college that some almost "cripple" themselves from receiving all that college can truly offer. The phrase, "It's not what you know, it's who you know," applies more than ever today when it comes to finding a quality job and beginning a career. Networking is vital for our success as a new generation soon to enter the work force. College campuses provide one of the best, if not the best, networking opportunities. Once out of college, having friends in all different areas and professions becomes more valuable than any knowledge gained from listening to a lecture or reading a textbook. College needs to be more than just academics. Parents and students need to keep in mind what college is preparing students for, the "real" world. What better way to prepare for the real world than to have "real" experiences with "real" people? College educates new generations on how socialize, think, eat, and sleep. College teaches us how to live and gives us endless tools to use to live successfully. The challenge for students is utilizing every tool it provides.

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College can be an intimidating environment, but with the right guidance it can be the most successfull, and the most fun time of your life. There are endless possibilites to learn and grow not only in the classroom but outside of it as well. Getting involved is the best answer to tackling the intimidation aspect of college. Joining organizations will build up your confidence and ensure that you're making the most of your time. Additionally, knowing that each class is passable as long as you put the time and effort into it. Which means forming relationships with professors, not being afraid to ask for help or raise your hand, studying, doing homework, and utilizing the resources that a university supplies to you. These are all detrimental pieces of advice but the best piece of advice is to find a balance. When you find a balance between school (studying, classes), your organizations, your friends, and yourself then you will find a comfortable routine that will help you reduce stress, and conquer your fear of college. Balance is the key, and takes time to acquire but will lead to a successfull college career, and a successfull life.

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I see you are nervous. It seems impossible to survive four more years sitting in classes! Instead, tasting uninhibited freedom and roaming the world is what entices you. You question how college can accomodate such a restless spirit. Those worries can be debunked! My first semester taught me the anthem of college is actually freedom to achieve fascinating opportunities. The road is open to fashion your learning environment into what you need. For instance, just take a walk to the study abroad office. I can now proudly inform you I will be studying abroad in South Korea this summer! I also see you are unsure about being noticed amidst the sea of undergraduates. My advice, simply be genuine. When you write papers, engage in conversations, and make decisions, do it with an honest interest and effort. In a very natural way, I found like-minded people because I fully engaged in my major's courses and clubs. It is there that I am met with a constant source of inspiration and support. Rest assured, you will find a million ways to celebrate your incredible new phase in life! In fact, college is just the beginning of a lifetime of adventure.

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I'm a student majoring in International Studies and a Political Science minor. The aim of most college students is to get the most out of their education, and that is exactly what my college provides. Class sizes are small, giving each student a chance to express their opinions as well as get to know their professors on a deeper level. The lessons are interactive, providing a great learning environment. As an incoming freshman, I was quite unsure about what my college experience would be like. However in college, I found friends I know I will keep for a lifetime. As an entrepreneur, I enjoy being involved on campus in ways that use and enhance my leadership abilities. The highlight of my time at NKU has definitely been my experience studying abroad. Thankfully due to a scholarship award offered by the international students office, which paid my trip, I had the opportunity to work with a school in Mexico as part of a service learning project over spring break. My time abroad had an immeasurable impact on my life. Not only that, but adding these experiences to my résumé will allow for many more career opportunities in the future.

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In college we have more responsabilities and we'll preparing for our own career. The transition is very hard because is different people, new professors and test to enter at the college, but your passion for your major is the hope to keep your mind ahead. The tools that your professors gave you in high school, It will help you for the new things that you learn in college. In my case, my major is music, and I give all my effort everyday to achieve my goal. I have been preparing very hard for music and basic classes, and always I keep my mind optimist for achieve all my goals. We are students, and our thoughts are looking ahead in our goals, thinking in our family and friends for be a excellent person and student. The transition processes are in our life periods of constant adaptations. Each transition process requires making decisions for a better future, in this case is our major. The academic transitions facilitate that the student continue advancing in new levels for the process of learn. This transition it can be stressful, but is the most beautiful phase in our life, because we are forming our minds!

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If I could go back in time as a high school senior I would give myself the advice to start planning early for college, to use every resource available, and to never quit. Many times in life we procrastinate and leave things for later not realizing that deadlines and due dates always become real. I would advise myself to start planning for college early so once high school is over, the transition to college goes as smooth as possible. Also starting early would give me time to decide how I want my future to be. I would advise myself to use every single resource available. Most students are afraid how to pay for college not realizing that there are multiple people and organizations that are willing to help. I would tell myself to talk to my counselor, teachers, and friends and would tell myself to seek help everywhere possible. Finally I would advise myself to be persistent. In college and life in general one has to have determination and perseverance. There will be many bumps along the road but reaching the final destination makes it all worth. You never know what the outcome might be if you don’t try.

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First, Never forget why you are attending college in the first place. The ultimate goal is to get your diploma and find the career you have been dreaming about. Second, always stay connected to your family and close friends. It is always good to have someone, or a group of people, in your corner cheering you on. Third, don?t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. You will learn so much about yourself you never knew. It also helps you learn about different cultures, ethnicities, and lifestyles that can open your eyes to new ideas and new ways of thinking. Fourth, learn how to balance school and fun very quickly. School work should always come first. And lastly, don?t give into peer pressure. Stand up for your morals and personal values, while also being opened minded to other peoples personal believes. It is hard being on your own for the first time. Having to make decisions for yourself without the guidance of a parent, or a counselor can be very difficult to manage. But if you stay focused and look at the big picture, you will succeed and possibly go above and beyond your wildest dreams.

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When I was a high school senior, I was against women attending college. I was told it wasn't necessary. It was a dangerous place where I would learn corrupting beliefs. State colleges were of particular concern and were to be avoided. So I didn't go. Things started to change when I turned 21. I had moved away from the culture and system that I'd grown up in. I started reading books like "Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide." I realized when women received more education, it resulted in longer life expectancy and lower infant mortality. I began to see education for women as an incredible opportunity and a gift. So, high school self: Relax! You will go to a state college, and it will be much, much better than you ever dreamed. You will meet people who are different from you, but their differences are not a threat to you. You will exchange ideas, meet new people, and be challenged to learn, improve and discover. And yes, along the way, you will change. But that's not something to be afraid of. It's part of becoming who you were made to be.

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Dear High School Self, Let the written word sweep you off your feet Lose yourself in the dim zebra pages of a tattered notebook Lose the invisible chains that thwart you from spectacular feats Let vicious vernacular transform you “You won’t make it.” Words will attempt to devour your soul Distort your image Destroy your spirit “College is a waste of time.” Words will becloud your once brilliant eyes Permeate your heart Pierce your fragile mind “Why not just get a job – be more useful?” You will struggle You will weep You will falter You will live “Must be nice to look down from that college throne.” Let the words that clenched your fists Inspire those around you Pave the road to your success Fortify your lovely soul Words cannot define you Words cannot defeat you Words cannot delete you College will be a lot of work, but you will make it through. You will be raped by a friend and want to escape. You will find solace through your grades, new friends, and myriad accomplishments. What happens to you and what is said to you will not break you down, but build you up. Great things await.

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If I were to go back in time and talk to my senior self, I'd start off by explaining how transitioning into college isn't as scary as it seems. As opposed to scary, the transition is filled with excitment, and a handful of learning experiences."Don't be nervous about making friends!", I'd exclaim. There's a student out there who's also searching for someone to go head first into this journey with. Moving onto campus, taking an eye-opening tour around the new city as well as exploring the buldings classes will be in, is all part of the excitment. Oh! And don't be afraid to enjoy campus activities and don't hesitate to become involved! Learning the best way to study, how to approach exams, and using the many resources provided, are essential to survival. Time management is the key to success and is very important to remember! Absorbing excitment and preparing for learning experiences all help when it comes to transitioning, however, I'd also say that discovering oneself and searching for the person you want to be, should be a main focus. Live, uncover paths, and graduate at your own pace.

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