Before coming to the Univesity of Washington, I wish I had known more about the city the school was located. It would have given me a better opportunity to take advantage of everything the school offered including its location in a major city. Instead I have slowly discovered what Seattle has to offer, but I know it must hold so much more. So I wish I was given a better idea of this diverse city, in order to fully appreciate the culture that surrounded me.
I wish I knew that time management skills used in high school is very different from college. You have to put more effort and time into studying in order to learn the materials. Learning in college is at a much faster pace than high school, therefore you have to allow yourself enough time to do everything you want in one day. You must be more organized and on top of things. There is no teacher or parent there to remind you to turn off the TV and study!
I would have liked to know what classes I sshould take to fill up minimum requirements for multiple majors. I was undecided coming in so it would have been nice to take classes that would set me up for a major before I knew what I wanted to do. I also would have liked to know that going to the library and studying a lot was necessary. Studying in college is much dfferent than high school and you really need to engage with the material to do well.
Before coming to UW or even college in general I wish I had developed more effective study habits. High school was significantly easier for me than college therefore I had to learn the hard way that college does indeed require hours of studying and reviewing notes. Had I developed these study habits earlier I feel as though the transition from high school to college would have been smoother and I could have done better my first quarter.
It's a big school. This is good and bad. Be prepared for large classes, and seek out personal attention from professors if you need it. Classes are large enough that it's usually not offered. Campus is very large, with many interesting things to do. Find clubs or groups that share your passions; get involved! Work if you need to, but find time to enjoy being in college, not just time for work and homework.
That this school has a very heavy emphasis on research. Therefore, professors have very limited and interest for their students. Classes available to the freshmen are usually very big, 200 plus students per class. Even though some professors take the time and try to reach their students, it's just not possible with the size of classes. Usually only upper-level classes have 40 or less students.
I wish that I had known how much effort I would have to put in, as a commuter student, to meet and make friends. In particular I would have told my high school senior self to make sure to be as friendly as possible and reach out to as many people as possible, particularly during Welcome Week. I feel as if I really dropped the ball on that one, and I wish I could have had a second chance.
It's harder to get out into the woods than I thought. This campus is strictly urban, with some great park and beautiful lakes. The more people tell you to take adavantage of your time there, the better. Apply for scholarhipos early, starting with a timeline and than focusing on the ones that are ost relevant to you. It doesn't actually rain so much - more of an every-other day drizzle.
The campus at the University of Washington is truly amazing. It is a city within a city. I must say I was naive to its size and all the opportunities and services the university provides. I wish that I had looked into alternative modes of transport around the campus; mass transit, mountain bike, or moped. The campus is very well designed for these modes of transport.
Honestly, nothing. Before coming into the University of Washington, I had already known most of what University of Washington has to offer me, and also what it would be like going to the school. I knew UW was going to be a big campus, with big class sizes. I knew UW was diverse, and very competitive. I also knew most of the resources UW offered for us.