West Virginia University Top Questions

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

N.

college and high school is totally different , colllege is for matured people, if you not matured you cannot survive. College is a great opportunity, so much freedom but you have to make good use of it. No one is going is going to tell what to do, u will be on your own. You decide whether you will go to class or not , any bad decision you take, will come back to hunt you so take time and take your decsions wisely instance your friends, find the one who is matured because he/she will keep out of trouble. Just learn hard and have some fun.

Kimberly

Study for all of your classes a lot harder even if they are easier courses. Do not slack off in any areas of your studies especially the easy classes that you are taking to get you by. Do not assume that college is a way out of your parent's discipline or a way to party all night long. College is the beginning of the rest of your life. Do not let anyone tell you that you can't do something, or that you aren't good enough to be whatever it is you want to become. Remember that you shouldn't give up because you can do anything that you want to do with your life if you set your mind to it. Be motivated and confident. Keep an opened mind and explore the possibilities of what majors interest you. Make friends with people within your major that have experience, advice,notes and books that you could borrow. Always look at different places for book prices that you need for class, the book store charges too much. College is an experience that will change all areas of your life. What path you choose to go down is YOUR choice.

Molly

Take your time in deciding what college is right for you. There are so many options out there and research is a great tool to make the right decision. Also, do not pressure yourself on deciding what exactly you want to do for the rest of your life. Sometimes being so young you think you know what you want, but in reality there are so many choices out there it is important not to limit yourself. In order to be successful, you must be happy. Make your decisions on your own thoughts and feelings and not those of others. Be happy with yourself, and in the end you will succeed.

Tiffany

After completing my first semester of college, I wish I could go back and give myself some advice. To start, I would've taken college credit courses in high school. I now realize the impact they have and how beneficial they are, not to mention that they're practically free! I also would?ve considered my class schedule before choosing my dorm. I live on the opposite side of town of my classes, so transportation is more of a hassle than it should be. The only other major advice I would give myself is to concentrate more on scholarships and financial aid. I'm paying my way through school, so money has always been an issue. No matter how big my dream is to become an interior designer, I can?t get there if I don?t have the funds for school. Right now, I feel as though I?m not going to be able to accomplish that dream because after one year of school, I already have an empty bank account. I've worked extremely hard since I was 16 to prevent this, but it turns out that a job isn?t enough to get me through college.

Jaimie

I'd tell myself that going to community college was a great idea. I'd also tell myself that your mom is right that college and high school are very different. Just because I didnt have a lot of friends in high school wouldnt matter because I'd meet a ton of new people at college, people just like yourself. College will be great because they have a lot more resources to help you than you think. Just don't miss out.

Grace

I would have made it a point to study the things that truly interested me. I recently changed my major from a science-based major to an art major because that is what I am truly passionate about. I think I would have also made it a point to be more involved in my campus. In the past year I have become much more involved with clubs/organizations and have developed new interests and met new people. I would have made it a point not to stress too much about classes. It is very important to me to learn as much as possible and make good grades, but it is very possible to make good grades and make time for fun and friends. During college you make lifelong connections with teachers and friends and gain valuable experience in your field. Communicating with and getting to know your teachers is one of the most beneficial things you can do in college. Lastly, I would not be afraid to be myself. I bring my own unique perspective to things and just as I value other's perspectives, I should not be shy about (respectfully) sharing my own.

Kendra

If I could go back in time to talk to myself as a high school senior, there are a few little pieces of advice I would give myself about college life and making the transition. First of all, I would tell myself to make sure I knew what I wanted to study. This would save a huge amount of time and frustration. Secondly, I would tell myself to be sure to have fun once in a while. The phrase "all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" was repeated to me a number of times throughout my first year of college. Thirdly, I would tell myself to make sure I kept in touch with friends and family back home. When things get stressful at school and you want to talk about something other than tests and assignments, it is incredibly refreshing to talk to a friend from home. Finally, I would tell myself not to worry about meeting new people and transitioning smoothly into college life. I have made many amazing friends that have helped me through the transition of becoming a college student. If I knew then what I know now, things would have gone incredibly smooth!

Nicholas

I would have given myself the advice to become better at studying. If you can become a great studier, then you will do very well in your classes.

Ciera

If I could go back and talk to myself in my final year of high school, I would tell myself to start having more fun and not let anyone take fun away from me. I also would tell myself to fill out more scholarship applications even if there isn't a huge chance I'll receive any of them, there is still a chance. I also would have invested more time in improving myself instead of my social life, now that It has been almost two years since we graduated those who I invested so much time becoming "friends" with, have all gone different directions and lost all ties with one another. Overall I have no regrets from high school, I just believe there is ALWAYS room for improvement.

Sarah

If I could go back in time to talk to myself as a high school senior to tell myself what to prepare for, it would be interesting to say the least. My time that I have spent thus far at West Virginia University have changed who I am as a person. When I first got here, I was the first one in my family to attend college and I really was on my own. I had to grow up very fast and learn how to be on my own. I would probably tell my high school self to get ready for more of a grown up lifestyle. That you are about to be on your own without mom and dad there to help you along the way. It doesn't really start out as a smooth transition but it does make it in the long run. College life is way more than they tell you in high school, so don't fall for everything that they tell you. Basically I would tell myself to get ready for one of the best adventures of your life cause its going to be an eye opener. Ands it all for the best!

Wesley

I would tell myself to go and take college classes at fairmont state. That way i could get rid of all the general eduacation credits i need to have before being admitted to my major. This would greatly speed up my college experience and allow me to graduate with a degree sooner.

Kristin

I would tell myself to have fun, but be smart. Save money, don't spend money on things you don't need. Textbooks cost more money than you realize. I would also tell myself to listen when people tell you to pick the teacher, not the time. I know it sounds dumb, but it's not bad advice. I realize that stacking classes makes life easier, but it's not worth three days a week with a teacher you hate. I would remind myself to type up each day's notes the same night, because notebooks don't have a "ctrl+f" function and you might not be able to read your handwriting tomorrow. I would tell myself to enjoy high school, but to plan ahead for college.

Heather

Study. That would be my main thing, and not to get to involved with friends that you forget your homework. I would also tell myself that I need to learn to take good lecture notes.

Laura

I would tell myself not to be afraid of who I am. Throughout high school everyone was always worried about what everyone else thought. In college, people dont care. You are who you are, and you find friends that are compatible to you as a person. These may be friends for a lifetime . I would also tell myself to develop study routine. College is much harder then high school and finding a study routine will make studying easier, grades better, and life less stressful. Lastly, I would advise myself to keep an open mind. Coming from a small town, I experienced much less diversity among people and views. By keeping an open mind, it was easier to merge myself into the college life and allowed me to meet some really great friends.

Elizabeth

Follow your heart and your dreams, keep on the path you are on, and you will be alright.

Janet

It would be to enjoy the full college experience and make sure you get connected to the school and you get as involved as possible. Getting involved gives you amazing oppurtunities to meet people who could help you later on in life for recommendations and jobs possibilities. You can also get great resume experience from involvement with clubs and activities.

Emily

I would say Emily, think about what you want to do every day when you wake up. Is this the place you need to be to get to that point. i dont know that someone could encessarily put a price on education, but how affordable your school is is very important. College isnt for everyone, being a resident assistant i see it every day. College is for people that are driven and dedicated. you need to be driven and dedicated to reach goals and get to where you want to be in life.

Stephanie

If I could go back and talk to myself when I was a high school senior, the first thing I would say is to stop missing class. It it very serious not miss information that will later help you. I wish I would have paid more attention to things in order to carry them over to college. Second thing would be to say that people you call your friends now, will not be your friends at all once you go away to college. The people who you will call true friends, will be the people you meet in college. I would also tell myself to enjoy the time I have at home with my family and don't take advantage of it. When my brother went away to college, I didn't think he was gone that long until I left myself. You take advantage of lots of things that you do not think about until you're gone. The final thing I would tell myself would be ready, the next few years are going to be rough but fun.

Cheyenne

All in all I think I did a pretty good job transitioning from high school to college. The only thing I really keep telling myself is that going from a junior to a senior in college is exactly like gonig from a junior to a senior in highschool, it's just one grade up, do not stress so much about it. Soemtimes it is easy to let things go to our heads when there is so much work to do and not enough time to do it in. With two papers due, a test in your hardest class, and a presentation in another class all in the same week it can feel like you are never going to win and you cannot possibly get everything finished in time, take everything one thing at a time. Finish your first paper, then your second. Make sure everything for your presentation is finished and organized. Then pull out your books and study for your exam. If you try to do everything at once you will never get anything done.

Cody

I would take more math classes.

Emily

The advice I would give myself would be to enjoy every minute with family, friends, and playing sports. Enjoy not having to study and still being able to make good grades. I also would push myself to learn study strategies that worked best for me because when I came to college I had to teach myself how to study considering I did not have to study much in high school. I also would encourage myself to focus a lot harder on the SAT's and ACT's because I did not qualify for the Promise Scholarship, which would have helped me financially. With the help of the promise scholarship and sti[pene of being a residient assistant I would be getting payed to go to college but instead I am now paying in loans.

Matthew

One of the most life changing things I have had the oppurtunity to do thus far in my life was studying abroad in Japan for three semesters. Although expensive, I wish I would have had the chance to know about this oppurtunity at an earlier age and focused more of my time on preparing for it and a more international focused major. When I first entered college, I was sent to a advisor that was not of that much help that directed me towards general studies because of my uncertainty. I believe that if I had a chance to go back and talk with myself about my interests today, and what you can gain from life abroad, it would have made my earlier years in college less expensive, more productive, and much more rewarding.

Kayla

Research more majors in detail to prepare myself with the knowledge to make the best choice for me. Concentrate on getting the best grades possible and work hard. I don't feel the high school preparse you for what lies ahead with college and the professors we have to deal with. Its a totally different world and it takes the first part of the semester just o figure out whats going on.

Kathryn

I would say make sure you really check out the school and the campus life before you go there. I never really visited WVU and when I went there I was totally blind-sighted. Im a handi cap student and I didn't know that I would be walking so much and heave to deal with so many hills/stairs. I wish I would have known what the campus was like before I actually went to it.

Clara

I decided to go to a smaller, out-of-state school, but ended up hating it there and transferred to my larger, in-state school. I wish I could go back and tell myself to choose the in-state school with the scholarships because it's not as scary as it seems. Now, I lost all my scholarships from going out of state and didn't even like it there.

Shanna

Knowing what I know now about college life and the transitions, I would go back and tell myself, "DO NOT WORRY". I remember the last week before college was spent tossing and turning in bed, thinking the "what if's" of my freshman year. "What if I miss my parents?" "What if the schoolwork is too hard for me and I fail?" "What if I hate it?" Then there was the last one which I'm sure has ran through everyone's head. "What if I don't make any friends?" Also, many people worry about the transition a student makes between the high school coursework and college coursework. Even though I took a tremendous amount of honor and AP courses before college, there is no way to be sure that you are ready for college. I would of told myself that I did enough, and I would be fine even if I hadn't taken these courses. The real solution in college is just to stay focused on the work in front of you and make sure you have a balance between having a social life and an academic life. That will make your academic success more worth it.

Gina

Although choosing a college is very important, remember that you will have fun no matter where you go.

Garrick

I would tell my younger self three things: focus your life, learn to use your time efficiently, and get your driver's license. First, I am a man of many hobbies and interests, but since attending college, I found my time much more limited. I spent much of my time working a little bit on each hobby that never came to fruition instead of putting all my effort into one. Looking back, I wish I dropped most of my hobbies in favor of the one I value the most: entertainment software development, which is the one related to the career I desire. Secondly, I wish I learned to use my time wisely. Things distract me easily, and I like to brainstorm during times I should be working on homework assigments. I would tell my younger self to kick this habit and save the brainstorming when appropritate. Finally, I wish I got my driver's license before attending college. I wasted time and money on public transportation and finding rides to school. It also makes my daily life more stressful. I believe if my younger self knew the importance of these things, I would be a more productive individual.

Amy

Take school a lot more serious even though it is just high school, and stop missing school unless you are actually ill. When it comes time to apply for college take your time and think about it. Don't just decide on going to the college that's the most popular, or the college that your boyfriend/girlfriend is going to. Consider things like financial aid/scholarships, crime rate, and make sure you take a tour of the campus to see if you like it and where you may be living. When you finally decide on the college you want to go to start thinking about a major. It's never too early for that! If you get a refund check when you get a financial aid try to limit your spending on needless items. Take out (loans) only what you actually need!

Ashley

Don't take college for granted. Work and study hard in order to achieve you goals, both long and short term. Since college isn't cheap, look into scholarships. Take the time to do the community service hours or write those essays. In the end, what you put into it is what you'll get back. Friends won't come to you, you'll have to go out and find them. While all this may seem like a bunch of negativity, it is, in fact, the truth. Try not to spend all your time partying or chatting away on Facebook. Be yourself and find your way. Use your final year as a high school student wisely. Contrary to what most say, your Senior year shouldn't be a bunch of easy classes. Try and challenge yourself and prepare for the toughness of those college courses you will be required to take. Most of all, enjoy the rest of high school and try and relax and have some fun on your way through college!

Ashley

I would tell my self to pay more attention, learn all you possibly can, take any oportunity that comes youre way, be open but stand up for your self, be confident, believe in yourself, don't get stressed out by looking at all you have to do over the years. take it week by week, and you'll get through it.

Lena

My advice would be to throroughly research colleges before picking a school. Every campus has its own unique aesthetic, and to be successful in college you must be comfortable and happy with your surroundings. Take advantage of on-campus resources and services such as tutoring and career help. Many students fail to realize all that the campus has to offer. Be open-minded and get involved in various organizations that will allow you to grow as a person and share your ideas with others. Stay on top of your work as it can be easy to fall behind. Professors are very helpful, but ultimately it is up to you to study and do your assignments. No one is going make sure that you do your homework every night or that you attend class so be responsible with your education. College is expensive, but there are ways to make school affordable. Use these next four years to learn about yourself and the world around you. WVU has a lot to offer, and there are many opportunities to take advantage of. It shouldn't be all about partying. Remember why you're at college, and have fun when you can.

Tyler

College is an amazing time in one's life and college choice is crucial. However, once the student or parents finds a particular school they like in their heart, go with it! Even if it involves stepping out of your comfort zone. The student most of all will grow as a person and be a more rounded individual which is what "mom and dad" ultimately want. During college is a student's primetime to grow, have fun, and learn to settle into their own skin. As children we all are caterpillars slowly crawling around until we reach our awkward cocoon or "highschool". Then, once college hits, the butterfly emerges for all to admire as a completely changed part of this world. College is the time for you to add your beauty to the world and not being ashamed of what kind of butterfly you are. Don't be afraid with newfound wings to explore everyone and everything. Make the most of this transistion and always be true to yourself. Years later you'll look into a diploma, and with many cherished memories behind, know it was worth it!

Angelica

I would tell anyone that you should visit the school you want to attend before you decide to go there. It honestly helps with deciding if this is really were you want to spend the next 4+ years of your life. I will warn you though don't let yourself get caught up in the parties and the social groups to much. You will need time to study. Plan to spend atleast the number of hour your taking of class studying outside of class. So if your taking 12 class hours plan to stusy for atleast another 12 out side of class. College can be scary. But you will make it. College can be one of the best times of your life but don't over do the fun or you might lose alot more grades then that party was worth. Yes the 1st few weeks might be lonly but you can and probly will make friends soon so don't shut out the world. You will be amazed at how much you can learn not only from you teachers, but also from the other students. Listen with an open heart and mind. You will be amazed. Good Luck. :)

Victoria

Much advice can be given to parents whose child is making the decision of what college to attend. Looking back, I believe that my best advice would be to give your child the ultimate choice in where to go, and encourage him or her to look beyond the normal. Many times I have seen young men and women look to schools that are close by, are known for the crazy parties, or those that are a "breeze" to get through, and all too many have been let down. My advice is to look far and wide during your college search, stretching your limit of comfort. One's dream school may seem as if there is no money available to cover costs, but there is always someone willing to help and scholarships to be awarded. It may seem like a school is too far of a distance away from home and too large, but what is life if not for ambition? Be brave, be bold, and be daring during your college search, and doors will find their ways to be opened.

Sydney

My advice to future studnets would be to follow your heart. When it comes down to everything it is you that has to attend the school not your parents or your friends. Your future should be about what you want. If you are not happy with a situation you put yourself in then how can you be happy with life. Even if you chose a school that doesnt seem right for you continue looking. It may be raining now but it cant storm forever. Make a change in your life and find the school that seems right for you and you can change the weather of your future. Be true to yourself and live your life which would make you happy for now and the future.

Chelsi

Make sure the school you are choosing has many majors that you could be interested in, because you don't know if you're going to change your mind. If you live in a dorm, don't be afraid to leave your door open and say hi to your neighbors and make friends. Everyone is nervous, not just you. The more you are involved in your school, the more school spirit you'll have, so join a club or go to a football game! If you go to parties, don't worry about fitting in because college doesn't have clicks like in hgih school. Socialize and have fun but remember what you're paying for: your education. Take it seriously!

Kelly

I would advice them to go to scholarship experts, they are the ones who helped me find this scholarship. I never heard of this scholarship and it was very easy and it was kind of fun. Many scholarships you run across are all traditional and boring. the greastest avice is to go find the perfect scholarship for yourself at scholarshipexpert.com.

Laura

College is all about what you make it. I would advise upcoming students to visit different colleges and talk with professors there. This will help give them a good perspective on whether they would like to attend a big or small school, if the school provides the degree of choice, and whether there are social groups/ acivities to fit your needs. When you choose your college and start school then I would advise trying new things. Try groups/activities that are more your style and then try some that arent. It is amazing what people can teach you and this will help you get a better feel for the school and for the students who also attend the school. Eventually you will find a group of people that you just click with, they will be like family. As long as you go into the college experience with an open mind then it is amazing the doors and kinds of oppurtunities that open up for you. However, while social activities are a big part of school, I would advise developing a study habit. This will help keep your gpa up and aid in less stress to enjoy the experience better.

Skye

Make sure you want to go there, it really does not matter what other people say! Do not let anyone tell you that you will not make it because you can. Definitely go and check the campus out. Think about your most comfortable setting, would you want a large school with less intimate class settings, or small school with a lot of one-on-one interaction with teachers? Think about location! Be positive that you like where your school is located. Is it far enough away from home, is it too far? Can you find things to do around it that you will enjoy? To make the most out of college, be a participator! You will never be happy & having fun if you do not let yourself experience new things! Go to games, go to functions, and meet new people!

Lisa

Students: Pick a school that let's you be who you are, and do what you relly want to do. Choose a major that you will enjoy so you will succeed! Have fun, but do not get carried away with parties, drinking, and doing what everybody else is doing. College is a time of liberation and freedom, but it is also time to grow up, and show your parents that your mature, you can make it, and assure them that they raised you well. This is the time to determine who you are and where you are going with the rest of your life. Do not get discouraged if it is hard to figure out, but never give up. Parents: Let your children choose their own path. It is harder to learn by experience, but if the wrong route is chosen, the lesson is learned forever. Students will make bad choices at times, but they will also make excellent choices at others. It takes some time to settle in and get uses=d to the teaching methods of different schools. Be patient. Be caring. Be supportive. And most of all let your child be his/herself.

Katie

To parents and students, first take things seriously then have fun. I know that sounds like a contradiction but its not. Students need to balance class/ work time and social time or they will either get burnt out or party too much and get behind. As for choosing a college, remember campus terrain is important, if there are alot of hills chances are you'll attend class less often and try to find a school that will work with you financially. Money is a very big deal, having books and supplies can add up, plus spending money is a must. Secondly, choose you major wisely then take your most challenging classes in the first two years, that way you'll know if you chose your major wisely and have time to correct it if you did not. Parents this is important, loosen the reins on your child...this is a time of independence. Your child needs to experience things for themselves in order to become independent and responsible... you can't understand something unless you experience it for youself.

Alyssa

The advice that I would give parents and/or students about finding the right college would definitely be "go with your gut." It may sound simple but believe me, as soon as I set foot on my campus I knew I was where I belonged. I can only wish the same for everyone else going through that difficult process of elimination. As for making the most of the college experience, have fun, stay open minded, and party just as much as you study. It's so extremely important to have a good balance between both social and academic aspects.

Garrett

Find somewhere that feels like home. It makes it easy to adjust and easier to stay focused. Don't feel pressured into picking a school because it's the school where your friends are going or where your parents want you to go. Never be afraid to have some fun, but always be sure to keep your school work the number one priority (it is why you're attending college after all).

Emily

I believe college is ultimately what you make it to be. There are probably certain colleges that have the specific attributes you are looking for in a school, and you should definitely apply to those colleges. However, if for some reason you are not accepted into one of those schools, you can still find the people and programs you are searching for in other colleges. You might have to look more diligently, but they are out there. In order to ensure more opportunities in college, I suggest considering a bigger university. Bigger universities, by default, have more alumni, which usually indicate a larger endowment to offer students greater opportunities. College is an experience that allows you to learn more about everything in life, including yourself. Do not be afraid to try something new! Join a club of some sort; you are sure to make fast friends with people who have some of your same interests in mind. Take advantage of internships, tutoring, and career services; college is fun, but you still want to have a job afterwards. Exercise; it reduces stress, fatigue, and your chances of gaining the "freshman 15." Enjoy it; college is everything you make of it!

Nathan

I would give the advice to parents and students to take your time, and really research and absorb what each college is offering you. Figure out what it is that when you leave school you want to say you accomplished, and see what school best suits that need. Also pay attention to what students say about financial aid and how easy or hard it is to attain because this saves many headaches down the road. I would also encourage them to visit each campus at least once. To make the most of the college experience you really need to put yourself out there and do something you would not normally do. Do as many activities as your coursework allows. Be as diverse and well rounded as possible because the college experience is about breaking inhibitions you can't at other parts of life. I use my own example in that I never thought I would ever join a fraternity. After having issues with my friends I knew before college I decided to try it out and it is now the best decision I made. I put myself out there and tried something different, which is what you have to do.

Steven

First and what's most important determine which school is fininacially applicable to the family's income. If the tuition is ok for your family then you shoud look for information about the major your expecting to pursue when you get there. If you go undecided that's not a problem because I'm sure you'll find some type of concentration that intrigues you. The most important thing I would say is definitely visit the school because as soon as you get there you'll just have a feeling that you belong there.

Constance

There is no such thing as a college that is "right" for everyone. Although its very stressful at times, finding the right college is a beautiful opportunity to find out more about yourself, even though it doesn't always feel that way. There are so many crucial decisions that need to be made; private or public, small or large, in-state or out? It can be overwhelming hearing everyone's contradicting "advice" and opinons but you must remember yourself during this whole process. Dont go to your dad's alma mater because you feel you have to, and don't bother attending your third choice school because something like finances got in the way! You have to lay all your cards on the table and decide what is best for you, because whatever choice is made will shape your future, hopefully in a positive way! Keep in mind that you cant put a pricetag on memories, and an education will last you a lifetime! Be happy, breathe, and relax - you are on your way to finding out why college is often referred to as "the best 4 years of my life!"

John

My advice would be to try to find a college that both parents and students are comfortable with. Some schools may have a better reputation, some may have ungodly amounts of extras to try to try to drag you in, but at the end of the day, none of that really matters compared to how well the student immerses themselves into their studies and their own life. I feel that it is nearly impossible to find a school that a student is going to succeed in by simply looking at class sizes, average GPA, activities or even by the school?s reputation; simply for the fact that everyone has different needs out of their home, which is what college becomes. If you are not comfortable in your own home, how can you be comfortable in your life? How can you sit down in a tense environment and be able to focus 100% onto your studies? Sadly the short and the sweet is that you cannot, which is why I feel that choosing a campus and a college by the feel that you get from it, by walking its streets, and seeing its people.

Kacie

I would recommend choosing a college that fits your educational needs first (of course) but also that will keep your social and extracurricular interests as well. Make sure that the school has opportunites that fit your personal interests such as sports, community service groups, clubs for your major, exercise opportunities/gyms, etc. I would also personally encourage joining social groups such as a fraternity or sorority as well because that has made a very positive impact on my college experience. These groups are not only for fun but they encourage and require academic success to stay active and enjoy all the activities the organization offers. These groups also involove their members in community service events that are not only fun but benefit the campus and community. In addition I would consider studying abroad if that is an interest for the student make sure to search your school's options. Last, choose your major wisely. Make sure that it is something that sparks your interests and minds! Be sure to consider your future such as where you want to live and work because your major and the job opportunities it provides will effect these things. Remember...work hard and have fun!