Quora asked a variety of successful students and graduates to share advice they felt college students are unlikely to hear.
Here is a smattering of tips worth considering:
- Remain focused: Always keep in mind why you are in college – what your goal is and how to reach that goal.
- Don’t Oversubscribe: It is easy to take on too much, especially with a lot of free time. Remember to dedicate 3 hours of studying to every hour of class time. Choose a few activities for involvement – some that will benefit you in learning career skills, and some that will keep you active and healthy. Don’t enroll in more than one “stretch” course a semester.
- Find A Community: Find a smaller community within the college community in which to be involved. This will provide a good support system and will make the whole campus less overwhelming.
- Getting In Doesn’t Equal Staying In: Just because you were admitted doesn’t mean you can sit back and relax! You need to prove you are worthy of that admission by maintaining a reasonable grade point average. 80% of first time enrollees returned – that means ⅕ did not(gov)!
- Online Footprint: Stupidity never goes away – manage your social media footprint.
- Freedom = Responsibility: Go to class, meet deadlines, turn up for work…
- Leave Your Door Open: College is a great time to make life-long friends. Leave your door open, and more people will stop by to chat.
- Stay The Weekend: If you go home most weekends, you will never benefit from being involved in the school community and culture – plus you are not fully embracing your independence.
- Communicate: Communicate with your roommate, your professors, your RA, and your parents. Don’t room with your best friend from high school. You need to begin a new and adult life and staying with a friend from high school can stunt that growth.
- Explore: Take courses you hadn’t thought about taking. You may just discover a passion for something to which you had never been exposed. It is okay to change majors and career paths.
- Music: Every once in awhile, make a mix of your favorite music. Music is attached to memories, and those mixes will someday be a great way to reminisce.
- Follow Your Body Clock And Take A Nap: Enjoy the freedom college allows for you to create your own schedule. If you are a night owl, take later classes and study late. If you get up early, take early classes and study in the afternoon. And, naps are perfectly okay.
- Meet Deadlines Your Way: If you work better under pressure, know that it is okay to write a paper the night before. Do what works best for you.
- Find Alone Time: College can be intense. Find an hour a day to be alone and to recharge.
- Celebrate Hump Day: Wednesday is halfway through the week. Celebrate it, but also make sure you can get through Thursday and Friday!
- It’s Okay To Follow: You don’t always have to lead. Sometimes, following can teach you things – how to not lead, new skills, how to collaborate, how to take direction, etc.
- Tattoos Are Permanent: Enough said.
- No Matter What You Do, Do It Better Than Anyone Else: If you work at this, you will become accustomed to pushing yourself and to reaching goals.
- Take a Gap Year: Either before college or during college, a gap year can help you understand why you are choosing college to begin with – plus it is a great way to experiment/explore without the pressure of grades.
- Finding Success: “First, define success for yourself (this often involves trial and error). Then, seek awareness of the success-values and culture of your family, so that you can independently consider your own success goals. Always remember that success is a multidimensional concept. Finally, remember that success is not a destination.”
Read 100 more tips from interesting people here.
And, if you are questioning the value of a college education in today’s competitive job market, think about the possibilities of Trade School by reading here.