I remember my first week of college. I was hundred of miles away from my home in a new state with no one I knew. It was both terrifying and exciting at the same time. There were so many choices that were finally—mine. Looking back, that first week of college made a big difference in my life. I wanted to stay in my room when I felt overwhelmed but I pushed myself outside to meet new people. Some of those people are still some of my best friends. So how do you survive your first week of college?
1.Go to All Your Classes- This might be obvious, but not everyone does it. I mean, what can they teach the first day? Everything. Really. This is the day you get the syllabus and your professor tells you what books you need (and don’t need). Also, if you don’t show, you might get kicked out of the class. If you have a choice, don’t sit in the back. You don’t have to sit right up front, but it's better if the professor sees your face, especially if it ends up being a problem class for you.
2. Don’t Go on any dates- This might seem counter intuitive. You want to meet people and who doesn’t want to go out on a date? I’m not saying don’t go out on dates, just don’t go out yet. Why? First, if you start going out one on one you will miss out on meeting new people. Also, there are upperclassmen who make it a point of scoping out the “fresh meat” freshmen. Just wait a two or three weeks till you get a sense of who is out there and what they are about. Do they really want to get to know you? Are you just saying yes because you are lonely or because you like them?
3.Three Activities- So you are not going out on a date, what do you do? Don’t lock yourself in your room. No! Make yourself go to three different activities and different kinds. So say you love sports go to a football game but then go to the beach clean up day and the speech club demonstration. Just try going to something you wouldn’t normally do. You didn’t want to be in a box, don’t put yourself in one. And when you are there, say hi. If you don’t know something, don’t pretend just tell them it caught your interest and you wanted to check it out.
4.Find a Place of Worship- If you are a practicing member of a religion, find services on campus or in the community. It can be easy to forget when you are away. You might be tempted to let that part of your life go, but don’t. You might find consolation, support, and great social activities at the campus or local place of worship. If you are not a member of a faith community, this is a great time to try out a few different religions/denominations. You’ll most likely get fed and get to meet some great people.
5. Ask!- This is the big one. If you need help with something ask (moving a box, doing homework, etc). If the first person says no, do not be dissuaded, keep asking. Also, see a group of people sitting together? Ask if you can sit with them. Meet an interesting person in your dorm? Ask if they want to join you for coffee and pizza. And remember, since you are not going to go on dates for a couple of weeks this is your time to invite people out. Get a group together to go bowling , play board games, or visit a local bar just don’t be afraid to invite someone new.