How to Prepare for your Freshman Year?
At USP we know that being a college freshman is a difficult task, but the transition this year might be even a little more challenging.
If you are a rising freshman in college, this article is for you. We want to give you a few tips to prepare you for this upcoming year, the long-awaited Freshman Year.
- Prepare for the challenges of Online Classes – many colleges are choosing the hybrid method, and some are going 100% online this semester. So be ready, you will need a well-functioning computer, a reliable wifi network and a sacred space for you to connect and study without too many distractions., Set up your own classroom at home, it could be just a corner, a desk. Colleges are constantly updating their website and sending frequent newsletters, so make sure you check it frequently.
- Enroll in Soft Skills Classes – every college has courses which they focus on developing communication skills, such as reasonable thinking, leadership, and problem-solving. These classes will be tremendously helpful when applying for internships or a full-time job.
- Your Planner – Time management is key, your personal organization and planning should be one of your priorities. Set dates and deadlines to accomplish your goals, time management especially as an athlete is vital to make things work smoothly. Make sure that you check your calendar or your to-do list every night, make any adjustments, and start every day with a clear vision of your daily goals, classes, appointments, training sessions, etc. And by the way, leave some space for your social time and recreation!
- Part-Time Job – The first couple of months can be very stressful and the transition is not easy, so considering a part-time job might seem overwhelming, nevertheless, working while studying is a really good thing if you find an opportunity you like and if you think you can put in the effort, then try to go for it. Studies show that students who work while in college have better grades than full-time students. This will build your character and strength important values that will become fundamental in your future such as discipline, punctuality, and integrity. You will also have a very important competitive advantage over your classmates who don’t work, he applying for full-time jobs you will have proven experience in the marketplace. And don’t forget, you will have well-earned money!
- Financial Aid Opportunities – if you or your family are being financially impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, you can appeal your financial aid packages and request for more. So make sure to check the opportunities you may have, reach out to the Finacial Aid office at your new school, and keep in touch with them.
- Orientation Week – most likely it will be held online, but the opportunities will remain the same. Make the most of these events, and opportunities to build connections. Be open and understand that everybody is trying to fit and connect. Usually, colleges also offer a First-Year Seminar, which gathers together all the new students on campus.
- Academic Support – as a student-athlete there will be many occasions in which you will need tutoring, especially during the season. Check beforehand what kind of academic help you have available, talk you your coach, your academic advisors and look for the Tutor Center. Many professors will offer office hours for consulting too. Take advantage of every resource available for you.
- Get Involved – there are plenty of opportunities to be active and get involved in extracurricular activities such as being part of the SGA (Student Government Association), community service, Clubs, etc. You can get involved in other projects besides the student-athlete life and give back to the community.
As you see there are many things going on, many opportunities and too many changes, if you are well informed, and get involved, this transition will go smoothly. Be prepared for the upcoming challenges and enjoy every step you take in this, the first year of your exciting college experience.
We wish you all the best!