What The Tour Guide Didn't Tell You About....The First Few Months

Take lots of pictures during orientation so you don't have to use your friends a million times- still love this one though.

Alas the return of my college guide! I was trying to think of what back to school advice I could give for upcoming freshmen and since there are 19387928301 packing lists out there, I decided to write a raw guide of things that I wish I had known about my first few months (as I wrote this, it feels like I'm writing about having a baby). With all of my "expert" sophomore knowledge, here's what I got- I can't wait to look back at this as a senior and laugh. Nonetheless, here are some of my (and my friends) best tips.  

1) Get out there This serves double meaning. First, enjoy the nice weather. Bike, walk and run outside. Take advantage of all the nice days you can lay out on the lawn and walk outside without a coat on. You will miss this in January when it's -10 degrees on your 10 pm walk back to your dorm from the library. Second, join something. It sounds so cliche, but the best way to meet quality friends is through other organizations. I found a direct correlation between my happiest friends at school and my most involved friends. 

2) Quality over Quantity During the first few weeks, you are going to have  to learn more names than any grocery cart name game could ever work. There are going to be people who are awesome- befriend them and people who are umm less than that. Like high school, friends change over time, and throughout the year (and I'm sure rest of college) you find your true friends and the ones worth having are the ones who will help you through anything, because there are a lot of bumps on the road to graduation. In addition, you will learn who from high school you're actually close with. 

3) Go to Parties Meet people. Be that freshmen girl (or guy depending where you go to school) and have a good time. 

4) You May Fail Something Sorry, but it's true. There is going to be at least one assignment that you do less than great on. The key is going to the professor BEFORE it becomes a problem. 

5) Staying In Honestly, some of my favorite memories were from the (many Friday nights before morning practice) when my friends and I would mess around or talk all night. Never underestimate the power of staying in when you don't feel like going out. 

6) Homesickness Unless you have been going to boarding school since you were in elementary age, there is going to be a day when you call you parents wanting to go home more than anything in the world. For me that day came on my birthday in April. Seriously- as everyone had gone home for Easter and I cried into my chocolate chip pancakes because I had not been or seen anyone from home in four months. I didn't cry at all when my parents left me, but it got me in the end. 

7) Doubt There may be a time when you doubt if you made the right choice in school. It may seem like all of your friends from home have their *explicit*together having the time of their life and you are doing something wrong. I specifically remember calling my mom on the phone crying telling her that I had no friends. This is completely normal and it will pass with time. 

8) The Freshmen 15 I think you have heard this from enough people to know it's true. Go to the (free) gym. Don't go crazy at midnight breakfast (all the time). 

9) RA During the first few weeks of school, you will spend a lot of time with your RA, and then it's up to you to keep a relationship with them. Obviously this varies depending on who it is, but they want to hear what you're up to and are awesome people to go to for advice. 

10) Roommates There will inevitably be a time when you and your roommate get into a disagreement or something goes wrong. The key is to set guidelines early and talk to them when something wrong comes up immediately- you cannot escape the people you share a room with. 

Hope this was helpful and/or a bit entertaining! If you are going into freshman year, I'd love to know your thought!

Happy August- rabbit rabbit!
{Image credit to Holly!} 


  1. thanks for these tips! i'll be a freshman this fall, and i am kind of nervous

    1. Of course! Don't be nervous, it's a total blast. Good luck, you'll have an amazing year!

  2. Number Four really hits home! I thought I was going to adjust fine to college and not fail anything... I was seriously wrong. I failed my first French test, even though I had taken French all through high school. College has definitely taught me that failure, especially in grades, is not the end of the world, and you can definitely come back from it!
    Thanks for your tips! I'm going into my junior year, but I'm studying abroad and I think these tips will be great for that as well.

    La Vie en Zoe

    1. It happens to the best of us... Good luck studying abroad and thanks for reading :)