Is your very first week of college coming up? It's a very exciting time in your life, but also rather scary; this is the start of your adult life, but the first time you've lived independently. Will you make friends? Can you cope with the work? Or will you want to run straight home to familiar surroundings? Here's how to survive your first week of college …
During that first week, you may be overwhelmed by the fact that you don't yet know anyone. So don't miss an opportunity to get talking to people. You never know, you may meet your best friend or boyfriend! Even just chatting to people can help you feel less alone.
There will be plenty of events laid on during your first week to help you get to know the campus and other students. So be sociable, and get to as many events as you can. Some will be specific to your courses, but there will also be meetings and parties for social groups, sports and hobbies. Be adventurous, and give them a try!
It's common for students to feel unsettled during their first semester and feel that they're the only one who's not enjoying themselves, while everyone else must be having a good time. But many people feel that way. Expect it to take time for you to feel 'at home' at college, and don't worry; by your second semester, you'll feel like you've been there forever.
It can be tempting to go a little mad and party all week. However, always look after your safety and don't overdo it. Keep an eye on your drinks, don't drink too much, and watch out for people who don't have your best interests at heart. Unfortunately, there will be some predatory people at college who want to take advantage, so keep your wits about you.
Campuses can be pretty enormous, and difficult to find your way around at first. Give yourself time to find any places you need to be at, so you don't end up running around frantically trying to find an important meeting! And also start to get organised with the work for the term; make sure you've got essential texts and get started on your reading (it's not all about fun, remember!).
While you're enjoying the social side of college and starting to make friends, do dedicate some time to relaxing. Quiet time will help you balance the demands of your studies and social life. Look for a good space to work and read, and take some time to just chill.
Finally, college is also about having a good time. So enjoy your freedom and that first step into adulthood - but don't go too mad. You don't have to turn into an instant party animal or show your parents that you're grown up now (believe me, they know!). You've got three years or more of college ahead of you, so pace yourself and don't try to cram it all into the first week.
College can be a fantastic experience; don't worry if you don't have a great time from the very first week. It takes time to settle in, but you'll soon make friends and enjoy everything that college has to offer!
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