Kareem D.

My first semester at college has been anything but the standard “rinse and repeat” that I thought college would be. I expected things to be very similar to how they were in high school but I soon found out that I was sorely wrong. Although my first semester of college was more difficult than I expected, I was able to learn many valuable things, not only in the courses I was taking but also about myself. With the help of my FYS class I have learned how to better prepare for my life at college and how to survive college life itself.

First and foremost, the most drastic change from high school was in my schedule. During high school I had a set schedule every day. I woke up at the same time and was home at the same time every day. However in college I had to adjust to differing class times for every day of the week and I also had to learn at a much larger campus. For that reason, I could often be found running around campus in my old running shoes (a sight which I believe best describes my transition into college). After getting used to my new schedule, however, and after attending a few FYS classes, I realized that the best way to prevent me from running around everywhere was to pre-plan my events. I shouldn’t only plan my school work, but also plan out my entire day. After doing this, I was able to get through most days without the constant feeling of being rushed. I set alarms for certain times of the day, allocated times for naps, checked traffic before I left my house, and thought about how long it took for me to get to every class. These changes are probably the largest I have made since coming to college and are some of the most useful in my opinion.

Aside from adjusting my scheduling and planning, I also had to adjust the way I studied in college. After doing sub-par on a few of my first tests, I realized that the study methods I used to get by in high school would not work in college. As I learned more ways to take notes and study, I began to test what worked best for me until I found a successful study method. Whereas I used to simply coast by on what I remember from lecture, I now consistently review power points and re-watch lectures as well as take my own notes while studying. Learning these new study habits has drastically increased my test scores and made college life easier. These changes are most beneficial to me in college and the growth process all started in my FYS class.

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