How *not* to look like a Freshman this fall

(image via: here.)

Are you a Freshman stressed out about looking lost, awkward, or barely old enough to be on campus? Here are some quick, easy tips for you:

1. Ditch the high school garb. Nobody cares that you played for the such-and-such high school tennis team or sang for the so-and-so senior high choir. You're in college now and you're all part of one big school. So leave the high school spirit tees behind, or if you must bring them along... use them as sleepwear only.
2. Easy does it on the school spirit. Yes, you're totally psyched about being a college student. Yes, you've scored three free school t-shirts in one day. Yes, everyone else is wearing their university attire, too. But have some restraint and don't wear it all at once or all during the first week. Better yet, save it for the first football game or something.

3. Go to class in style. You may have this idea that college students loaf off to class in sweatpants or even pjs. Please refrain from doing so. It's so much more fun and more attractive to dress totally cute and show off your sense of fashion. Cute clothes can still be comfortable. And don't cover yourself head-to-toe in name brands. Experiment instead.

4. Ditch the map. On the first few days of classes, Freshman either wander aimlessly or have their eyes glued to a huge map as they attempt to maneuver the campus. Cheat this by scoping out the campus beforehand! Orientation and campus tours don't count. You need to print off your schedule and find your class locations and the routes that you'll take to get to those places. Do it shortly before classes so that when classes do begin everything will be fresh in your mind and you won't have to ask for directions or pull out that hefty map.

5. Don't lumber around with a twenty-pound backpack stuffed full of every textbook and a notebook for each on the first two days of class. Chances are, you won't need that load. The first class meetings are usually to discuss course expectations, the syllabus, and needed supplies. There's no sense in lugging that huge psychology book to class if the professor is just going to hand out some forms and send you on your way after only fifteen minutes. Instead, pack lightly with essentials like a notebook and pen to take notes about what you will need to bring to class in coming days.

6. Don't travel in huge groups. You might be feeling insecure and excited about your new group of friends that you met in the dorm. But instead of going everywhere in one big flock, split up and agree to meet each other at places like the dining hall or activity center. Walking to the dining hall in a group of ten or eleven screams Freshman! Walking in groups of two or three... not so much.

7. Embrace independence. I'm not talking about the you-can-stay-up-as-late-as-you-want and fill-your-plate-with-whatever-you-want-to-eat kind of independence. But the independence of being alone gracefully. You can't always be surrounded by your friends. You may have to eat alone in the dining hall, pass time by yourself between classes, etc. Most Freshman tend to go everywhere and do everything in mobs. If you find yourself eating alone in the caf, don't fret or curl up into a little ball of insecurity... keep your head up, smile, and just eat... like the upperclassmen do.

8. Sharpen up your small-talk. Instead of asking people what grade their in, ask what year they are. Don't ask the oh-so-typical questions like "So what major are you?" and "Where did you go to high school?"

9. If you have old friends at college with you, don't cling to them. You'll find yourself creating a safe zone and it will be harder to make new friends because you'll appear to be less approachable. Same thing goes with bf/gf relationships. Sure, you love to go to school with your sweetie. But it'll be better for the both of you if you both branch out and make friends.

10. Don't try too hard. Be yourself and have fun!



Lauren said...

Number 6 is funny. I remember walking from the dorm to the dining hall with practically my entire floor as a freshman. Haha.

Joanne said...

I remember the freshmen days,we all eat like Da Vinci's Last Supper=)
I couldn't agree more that a freshman shouldn't try so hard on fitting in because your already in.

Ariel said...

Haha great post and great advice! Actually, it inspired me to write my own: http://bit.ly/aLSkOI.

The huge group one is totally true; at my school, we call them gaggles. You know, like geese XD

Unknown said...

just wanted to let you know...I am featuring you tomorrow :) great blog!

dev said...

This cracked me up! I remember freshmen year just like it was yesterday. I didn't do most of these, my only true freshmen statement was the map.

Stopping by from 20SB.

Anonymous said...

Wear whatever you want as long as your comfortable wearing it