In honor of the many freshman around the world who are starting the first year of college I offer some words of advice.
As I am entering into my seventh year of college, I have finally discovered nothing productive happens after 11 pm. While watching movies and eating chocolate all night with your roommates is fun, save it for the weekend. It will save your GPA and thousands of dollars in scholarship money.
While having a date with the library each night can lead to academic success, it can also become monotonous. Schedule some time to get involved with a club or organizational that you are passionate about. This will lead to successful networking, good friends and maybe even a perfect job.
Many people around the world would die for an opportunity like yours. Use it wisely.
No one can be saved in ignorance. Questions are the key to knowledge and your professors can be a spring full of knowledge. Be willing to show curiosity. Challenge ideas, argue with your text books and search for truth.
Remember who you are and be true to yourself:
Oftentimes we place on identity on our environment; in fact, most of the time we are tempted to mold ourselves to become more like those around us. While some change is good, like exchanging of recipes, the way you clean the bathroom or vacuum the floor, be aware of the change which threatens to steal your identity. If you are a the country girl who loves sheep and ponies be willing to admit it; it your a punk rocker and everyone loves country, play your music loudly (but respectly). The sooner you learn to be YOU the better college experience you will have.
If there are 38 people on your floor, repeat the same phrase a wise man taught me my freshman year, "I am number 38." While your life might be stressful and your classes difficult, I guarantee there will be someone down the hall who is struggling more than you are. Be aware of those who may be extremely homesick, depressed or lonely. Be their friend and make them cookies.
Learn how to Pray:
I once heard that a college testing center is the most sacred building on all college campuses because of the amount of prayers offered within. While some are offered in desperation because of lack of study time, others are offered sincerely by those who understand the Author of all truth. There will be times in your college career that you feel like you just cannot do it; At these times I challenge you to petition Heavenly Father for his help. For he has commanded us all to "seek learning by study and also by faith." From experience I have come to learn that oftentimes the best student in not the one with a 4.0, rather a successful student in the one who learns how to access the Author of all truth for guidance, knowledge and wisdom.
My best of luck to all of you as you embark on this new phase of life.