College Tips From A Freshman

As a new college student, I’ve had to navigate new ways to stay on top of managing my time and work, because college is much different than high school. Below are the two main problems I’ve encountered in my first few weeks on campus, as well as solutions I’ve found to overcome them.

Due Date Confusion:

Now for starters, your high school English teacher droning on and on about how much harder college will be, lied.  Receiving the infamous speech about how your college professors won’t care about you seems to me like a rite of passage, however, from my (fairly short) experience, it hasn’t proved to be the case.  While professors typically have more students they’re responsible for in comparison to high school teachers, I can confidently say that I’ve never had instructors more caring, compassionate, and understanding than my current batch.

Now inevitably, with so many more students to manage, your professor will not have time to chase behind you to stay on top of due dates, which is one of the main adjustments I’ve had to make since high school.  On top of that, my current school uses completely different software than my previous one, which I’m not familiar with.  These factors coupled together made seeing what work I needed to get completed hard.

My solution: Make your own homework schedule!

What I’ve found to be most helpful is at the beginning of the week, I spend time navigating this new software and jotting down what assignments and due dates I have approaching.  I then organize my homework schedule for the week based on when everything is due.  For example, if I have three assignments and a three-part research paper due Friday at 11:59 p.m., my schedule for the week looks something like this:

Mon | Assignment #1

Tues | Assignment #2,  Research Paper (part 1)

Wed | Research Paper (part 2)

Thurs | Assignment #3

Fri | Research Paper (part 3)

I’ve found this cuts down my studying as I’m not wasting time searching for what I need to do, and it helps give me peace of mind that I’ll hit all due dates on time!

FOMO!!! (Fear of Missing Out):

As we all know, with college comes a whole lot of new independence and freedom, which can be very easily abused if you’re not conscious about it.  There’s always going to be a party or an event that your friends want to go to, and it’s easy to get swept up when you’re living a new parent-free, no curfew life.  Consequentially, it’s easy to fall behind on your responsibilities, especially when inebriated (always drink responsibly!).

My solution: Prioritization

In all honesty, this is the one I struggle with the most, because there is no straightforward solution.  My best advice to overcome this is to focus on your goals.  My priority is graduating with my degree, and reminding myself that when having a dilemma of responsibility vs. pleasure, it’s helped me to remember what I’m on campus for in the first place.

Whether you’re a new college student like myself, a curious high schooler, or even a college veteran, I hope you found something in this article to help your college experience flow that much more smoothly!


By Gabrielle Bolton, Freshman, Howard University

Instagram: @missxxbolton


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Written by Gabrielle Bolton

Hi! My name is Gabrielle Bolton and I attend Howard University. I am beyond grateful to have been given a platform to share my voice with you all, and I hope you enjoy my work! ❤️

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