Tips for Surviving Freshman Year
You are going to be treated like an adult, so you might as well act like it. Seeing a student get mad at a professor when they will not let them turn in an assignment late or lowers their grade for consistently skipping classes. Although, most Linfield educators are friendly and, generally, tend to care about their students’ well-being, it is not their job to hold your hand and make sure you do your assignments. Do not senselessly hate on a professor because they expect you to meet the requirements of the class. Do not think that you are some sort of special snowflake that can turn in work and show up to class whenever you feel like it. Surprisingly, professors actually know what they are doing and definitely know more about life than you do. Stay classy and do not start a blood feud with a professor that gave you a poor grade on a poorly done essay.
Call your mama
or whoever cherished you as a small child, on a regular basis. They love and miss you and want to make sure that you are eating and not getting herpes. You would be surprised how happy it will make your parents if you call them out of the blue, do not end the conversation asking for money. This rule does not only apply to freshman, but to everyone.
Take a “fun” class
College is four years of your life, which is a lot of time and a lot of classes. Of course, it is always important to focus on your major and minor, but it is also important to branch out. The entire point of a liberal arts college is being able to explore the different realms of subjects that exist. Consider taking a class on the sole basis that it sounds fun. So what if the class is not a major requirement or a part of the Linfield Curriculum requirements? College is your time and your life so you should be trying to enjoy it, at least a little bit. The worse thing that could happen is that you really do not care about poetry. The best thing that could happen is that you could unlock a hidden talent for painting and become the next Van Gogh. No one should be taking 16 credits of difficult classes that keep them up at night. Learning is important, but so is enjoying what you learn about.
Don’t over extend yourself.
So, you just pledged to join a sorority or a fraternity? Plus you work ten hours a week on top of a full credit load? And you signed up for several clubs? Spoiler alert: you are going to burn out. Having a social life and hobbies is awesome, but there is nothing wrong with getting into pajamas at four in the afternoon and having a quiet evening in. So, always leave time in your weekly schedule to relax because you will need the time to breathe as the semester goes on and the workload grows. There is so much to do at Linfield, both academically and socially, but it is impossible to do it all and keep your sanity. Try taking one or two evenings a week to do nothing. Catch up on your favorite Netflix series and get a good night’s rest. Your body and your soul will thank you for the break.
Take notes like your life depends on it.
The biggest lie ever to one’s self during an hour and a half lecture on a subject that one was supposed to read about, but did not, is “I will remember it.” Write down everything. If the professor took the time to add it onto a powerpoint or takes the breath to mention it during class, chances are, it is important. Furthermore, after fifteen weeks of monotonous lectures and attempting to “remember it,” you will not remember anything, especially during finals week when you’re trying to remember (or learn) a semester’s worth of knowledge. Fall semester of freshman year is the time to learn how to learn in college. Set up solid study habits now because later will most likely be too late. Although it is not true for all classes, it is generally a solid rule of thumb to keep, and cherish, a course’s syllabus. Many syllabi, especially the eight-paged heifers, include exam dates, reading lists, office hours, and pretty much anything else you might need to know.
Treat yo’ self.
Linfield classes expect a lot of hard work from their students and as the semester goes on, the work will only get harder and more infuriating. This means, that breaks and treats are completely justifiable and necessary to success. Reward yourself for surviving a test or a particularly rough day. Grab a treat from the new Starbucks in between classes or, if your style is more ‘go big or go home’, pig out on your favorite fast food meal without caring about the excessive amount of calories. School is hard and life is hard. Sometimes a brownie or a burger or a manicure or a milkshake will make life a little less hard. Most importantly, never feel guilty about a treat. Remember: you are a beautiful human being that works hard and deserves nice things for your efforts, be it writing an essay of simply getting out of bed. However, this does not necessarily mean testing your liver’s limits every weekends. No one wants to be the person that has thrown up in the dorm hallways more times than is socially acceptable.
Let high school go.
Congratulations, you make it through high school and have matriculated onto something grander and way more expensive. The worst thing anyone can ever do ever is not letting the past be the past. Do not stay hung up on the kids you went to high school with, especially if you are never going to see them again. Go ahead and change who you were in high school if you want to. No one here knows about what a dork you were. Never compare your life to someone you once knew. It does not matter if someone else has a better GPA than you or is seemingly more active in their college years than you. Focus on your life. The one exception to this rule is Facebook stalking people that used to be mean to you from time to time and saying, “Well, at least I’m not pregnant.” Furthermore, and this may sound brutal, if you have a significant other that you went to high school with, who may still go to high school, chances are it is not going to work out. One, or both of you will find someone new and more exciting. Sometime during the semester, or possibly the next month, you will realize that your promise ring does not mean squat. If you feel like someone from your past is tying you down then let you go because you do not need negativity in your life.
Paige Jergueson /Columnist
Michon Hunsaker / Senior
Joey Gale / Senior
Alissa Runyon / Sophomore
Michael Burk / Junior
Photos by Paige Jergueson/Columnist