It can be tempting to blow off your college’s freshman orientation. After all, this is college, right?
But skipping out (or just not paying attention) could end up costing you time and peace of mind in the end. That’s why you should go into your orientation ready to learn and observe — because you’ll need the info presented and the extra time on campus to get ahead of the game.
Here’s how you can conquer freshman orientation and be prepared for your first semester.
Freshman orientation provides many opportunities to meet new friends, especially those who share your major or who will live in your residence hall. That’s why it’s important to stay true to yourself. While you should try to go to all the mixers and social events offered, if you’re not into country music, don’t go to the country music concert. Find events that interest you, and if you’re not interested, check out the dorm floor to see who stayed behind.
If you’re working on making friends with your new roommate(s), the best ice breaker is to talk about how you want your dorm room to look. Discuss themes, colors, and shared items. While you may disagree on fashion or style, you can have fun shopping online for wall or floor decor that works for both of you.
One of the most important parts of orientation is getting your first class schedule. You’ll want to get the best classes before they fill up, so do your homework before you start picking out what you’re going to take.
There are a ton of different resources you can use for this. Read up on professors and their class reviews online. Check out your major requirements and make a checklist of classes you know you’ll need to take. If you’re able to talk to upperclassmen from your college in advance, ask them to help you make your schedule out; they’ll give you a better inside scoop than your advisor.
Getting to Know the Campus
With your schedule in hand, use your time on campus to map out your walk from one building to the next. Scout out your new favorite bakery or check out the hours of the Starbucks closest to you. These are all essential things you’ll need to know the first day of class.
Of course, you’ll also want to check out where the tailgaters go for football games. Having some fan gear ready to go for this trip will help you get in the spirit.
Plan Out Your Dorm
There’s no rule that says you have to come into orientation week or freshman orientation events knowing what you want for your dorm. If possible (if you’re not staying in there already), get a tour of the dorm rooms so you can refresh your memory on the size, wall type, placement of beds and furniture, closet size, etc. This will help you make decisions on what bedding will look best with the wall color, what storage you’ll need to store away your winter clothes, and how big of a shoe hanger you’ll want to grab.