Transitioning into college life was exceptionally difficult for me because I was homeschooled for most of high school. Combine this with taking a gap year and working too much, I had a really hard time becoming accustomed to college life. During that transition, I learned some valuable lessons by making some big mistakes. Here are the ones that stick out the most.
- I didn’t pay my fees on time.
In my first semester I missed the fee payment deadline and realized this at 2am that night. I cried for an hour when I realized I had lost my spot in all of the classes that I had meticulously scheduled. It taught me how serious deadlines are in the real world.
- I didn’t make any good friends in my classes.
At first I thought the friend in my Intro to Marketing class rocked, then one day I missed class and texted him to see what happened and if there was homework, and he told me nothing important happened and there was no homework. However, when I got to the next class, I found out that we had something important due for our term project that had only been communicated verbally. I learned that good communication between classmates is important, and even if you never talk to your new friend after the semester, it is good to have someone on your side in class.
- I was a commuter student.
Commuter students drive to school, go to class, go home to study, and then do it all over again. I lived that pattern for most of the first semester and didn’t see the value of trying to schedule time for myself to get involved on campus. Now I look at student engagement as a way of making my college journey more fun and manageable.
- I skipped
To be fair, I normally had good reasons for missing class. Although missing one class here or there won’t hurt, missing class on a regular basis can affect your grades. I found that to be the case and have since smartened up about my attendance habits.
- I started studying for exams too late.
Waiting until 2 weeks before my final exams to start studying was a bad idea. My exam marks were below my expectations and I think the two are directly related. Unless you study a lot on a weekly basis, don’t wait so long to get started!
Most of the mistakes I made were quite average, and I’m sure a lot of people struggle in similar ways. Although making mistakes is a good way to learn, I hope you can learn from mine.