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February 29, 2024

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    Richard Saker/Contour by Getty Images As we end Black History Month, here is one of my favorite poets, Danez Smith, who writes on intersectionality between their Black and Queer identities. At the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) conference in Kansas City, MO, I had the opportunity to personally meet Smith, and they are […]
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Spring Housing Guide

Common freshman mistakes

Let’s be honest–most college students make more mistakes their freshman year than any other time. Whether it’s being too naive or just plain ignorant, many freshmen either do not take full advantage of the college opportunity or take it for granted too much. Many of these mistakes are all too common and can easily be prevented. Although this does not just pertain to academics, some students don’t feel it is necessary to experience all aspects of college life. So I am here to set the record straight and give you my top five freshman mistakes in hopes that it may help you have a more enjoyable and productive semester.

One of the most obvious mistakes is not going to class. I have heard it a thousand times, “Oh it doesn’t matter if I miss a couple of classes,” or “they don’t take attendance, I will get the notes from someone later.” I admit it, I had this same mentality too for a couple weeks before I had my first test. Then I realized that maybe I should actually go to class if I don’t want to end up working at Bob’s Used Car Lot. Even if you are one of those people who don’t like to read, the least you can do is go to class. The correlation between those who attend class and those who get good grades is amazing. Imagine that! Keep in mind, your parents are paying all this money for you to come here.

Then there’s the notorious “Freshman 15.” I’m sure everyone knows what I am talking about. Now that you have an abundance of high calorie foods at the swipe of a card, some take it a little too far. Double cheeseburgers from Wendy’s and Philly cheesesteaks from Steak Escape are not always the best way to stay healthy. Though if you are going to eat like that, we do have this thing here called a Rec Center where you can work out your body in an attempt from getting that extra weight.

I know all of you freshman are excited to be on your own and party until you can’t see straight, which is alright in some cases, but don’t do it before your 8:00 a.m. class the next day. I know what you’re saying, “I’ll only have a couple,” but then a couple turns into a six pack, then the next thing you know your doing keg stands until the sun comes up. We’ve all been there and it sucks. Don’t put yourself through the agony of trying to get up and actually comprehend what your professor is saying. It’s just not worth the pain and suffering, or puking all over the person next to you.

One mistake I have seen countless couples make is just hang out all day together every day and never go out and experience college life. We all have one of those friends that do nothing but stay in their room all day with their boyfriend or girlfriend. That’s great that you care about someone and you are lucky enough to go to the same University together, but it doesn’t mean you should deny yourself the pleasure of going out by yourself and meeting new people. Academics are one part of college, but experiencing the college life is almost just as important.

Along with staying in your room all day with your girlfriend, another mistake I have seen countless friends make is going home every weekend to see their significant other or just go home to hang out with their old friends. There’s nothing wrong with going home every once in a while, but don’t take it to the point where the guy across the hall doesn’t even know your name at end of the semester. Don’t be that guy. Go out, party and make new friends. If those people at home really care about you that much they will still be there when you get back.

The number one mistake I know just about every freshman makes is cramming for tests. You tell yourself you’ll go study tomorrow, and then tomorrow turns into next week, and the next thing you know you drinking a gallon of coffee all night studying for a test. Don’t do that to yourself. It’s amazing how much less material you have to go over before a test if you just read and study a little here and there. Do it in between classes, or after you have been flipping through the TV for about 15 straight minutes. Those 15 minutes you wasted flipping through the channels could have made the difference between a C and a B.

Make the most of your freshman year. It will be some of the best times of your life if you can keep from making any of these mistakes. And if you can, I guarantee you will have a much more proficient and exciting semester.

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