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Student Blog: Big Sister Advice for New College Students

Some thoughts I’ve collected through the years

Student Blog: Big Sister Advice for New College Students

After four years at university I've picked up a few pieces of wisdom along the way. For some of you who don't have older siblings who went to college, myself included, I'd like to share with you some pieces of advice. When I went away to school I didn't really have anyone to guide me and I was navigating this new world all on my own. Now that I have lived through it all, I'd like to pay forward some of these lessons to a new generation of students. For four years away at college, here are four nuggets to take along with you.

  1. Be a Go Getter and Chase Those Dreams

  2. Balance is Key, There is Always Room to Socialize

  3. There is Absolutely No Shame in Asking for Help

  4. Take Risks, Even if You Think There is a Good Chance You'll Fail

Be a Go Getter and Chase Those Dreams

If you want it go and get it because no one is going to bring it to you. College is all about seeking new adventures and opportunities and it is all up to you! No one is going to hand these moments to you, you have to go and catch them. Ask about that internship or job, express your curiosity, and be straight up about what you want. College is what you make it and it's up to you how much or how little you do with your time there. The most amazing experiences I've had in school are the ones I chased and made happen. One of my favorite adventures from my time in college was touring Italy in summer 2019, while performing with a dance company.

Balance is Key, There is Always Room to Socialize

The phrase 'college experience' says just that; it's an experience. It's not just about the classes or the grades you earn. College is about learning and discovering who you are. It's about the people we meet and the adventures you have. Many campuses have a variety of clubs and organizations to join that allow you to be more involved in your school as well as Greek life. There is time to do it all with a little juggling, so go out with your friends, join clubs, go to concerts. College is much more than just the degree you are there to earn. I speak from experience when I say I promise it's possible to go clubbing on a weeknight and be up for dance class the next morning!

There is Absolutely No Shame in Asking for Help

When you need it, ask for help. There is no shame in saying the words 'I need help'. College, as fun as it can be, can be very stressful. We are not invincible and sometimes need support from others. Support can be as simple as calling your mom or a close friend when you are breaking or having a good cry. Colleges are also here to support their students and have many resources on campus such as counseling services. Asking for help when you need it really does make all the difference. It may not magically poof all your problems away, but having even just a listening ear to talk to in the moment can make you feel a little bit better.

Take Risks, Even if You Think There is a Good Chance You'll Fail

You are young and this is the time to live without thinking two or three times about it. College is only four years and sometimes opportunities only ever present themselves once. We have to take the chances that life gives us because more often than not the benefit will always outweigh the negative. We have to stop asking ourselves what if I fail and start asking ourselves what if I succeed. This also goes beyond academics. Step out of your comfort zone, and do things that scare you in a good way because it's how we expand our horizons and grow as people. How will we ever know where our limits lie if we never push the boundaries to get there?

Four years seems a lot longer than it really is because I promise as soon as you move into your freshman dorm, you will close your eyes and turn around and it will already be time to walk across that stage. From a big sister who's been in your shoes, take all the chances life throws your way! Go to that party, kiss that boy or girl, study abroad, and stay up all night just to talk until the sun rises! Tell people how you feel, laugh at yourself, go to the beach at 1am just to eat donuts, and play tag in the park at night. Make more memories than you think are even possible! If I could go back in time and do it all over again, I would!

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From This Author Student Blogger: Claire Desenberg