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5 Things I wish I knew as a freshman

By Kristen Walters

The end of the year is quickly approaching and many new college students have a chance to reflect on their first few months as a freshman. The first year of college can be tough. Whether you’re staying home or flying across country, trying to adjust to college life can be stressful.

College students across the city reflect on the five things they wish they knew as college freshman.



1.  Be Yourself.

In college, you can be 100% yourself and find people who accept you for you. Don’t spend your time trying to be someone you’re not. College is all about being you.

“I wish I was more myself the first few weeks instead of trying to ‘fit’ in by going to the cool parties where I really didn’t know anyone. After I realized that college is way different than high school, I started becoming friends with people that are more like me rather than the kids who thought they were ‘cool’”. Tim, DePaul University  


2. Time Management is EVERYTHING.

Procrastination is virtually impossible if you want to excel in your classes. Learn time management and learn it now. You’ll spend half the time in classes that you did while you were in high school, but you’ll be expected to do double the work. Learn to use your time wisely.

“Time management. I wish I knew the importance of time management. I learned that in college the key to getting A’s and B’s is spending double the amount of time you spend per class every week studying and doing homework.”  – Dani, UIC















3. Get Involved.

There are countless things to be involved in during college. If you can’t find something that you’re interested in, create it! If you’re not involved in anything, you’ll be spending a lot of time in your dorm room.

“Get involved. Be involved in things going on. Just get involved in anything.”  Zack, Columbia College


4. Have no expectations.

Don’t spend your final high school summer worrying about what college life will be like. Enjoy your summer and just come to college with an open mind, you’ll thank yourself later.

It’s better to come in with minimal expectations because nothing is ever exactly the way you think it’s going to be. So if you account for that, you spend more time adjusting and less time being confused and disappointed.”  Alexandra, Loyola University Chicago


5. Learn Public Transportation. 

No matter where you’re from, learning how to use the CTA as a Chicago college student is key. It will get you just about anywhere in the city of Chicago. You may like walking now, but what about in 105-degree weather or in 10 inches of snow?

“[I wish I knew] how to use the CTA. Having lived on the South Side before college, I’m so used to driving everywhere that I never relied on public transit to the extent that I have to now.”  Kevin, University of Chicago

Photos by Kristen Walters and Alexandra Alexandru  

  • written by Kristen Walters on November 26th, 2013
  • posted in Blogs

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The Hub Bub is a collection of articles, videos, audio, photo slideshows, interactive maps and other media produced by students enrolled in journalism courses at Loyola University Chicago's School of Communication. For more about the School of Communication, our award winning faculty, and our state of the art facilities located in the heart of Chicago, visit our website.