How to Transition Into College Life

The transition into college life is a new and exciting period for any student. As a matter of fact, I vividly remember how it felt the morning my parents drove me over to Lakeland to begin my first year at Southeastern. Unsure of how to adjust, my stomach felt sick with nerves. After all, I spent my entire life in the same town with the same, familiar people. What would happen if I wasn’t going to be comfortable away from my family? Also, how would I make new friends? Would college be too difficult? But within a matter of weeks, all of those doubts vanished thanks to the welcoming environment at SEU and some good advice I was given along the way.

While starting college brings changes to our lives, here are some tips and tricks to getting the most out of your college experience and making this time of transition smoother.

Purchase an agenda or planner.

The first day of class can be stressful as professors pass out syllabi showcasing all the work that is required of you throughout the semester. If you take the time to write it out in a planner, it can make things a lot easier. You will always be able to quickly check an assignment due date or when to start preparing for a test.

Utilize the agenda or planner to remember to create healthy study habits and to set a reminder to return library books. In addition, make note of special dates and make sure not to miss deadlines like registering for next semester’s courses. College workloads tend to increase rapidly. As you transition into college life, creating a plan of action helps to alleviate stress and helps to make tasks more manageable. (Crossing those assignments off the list feels so good, too!)

Work to find balance in every area of life.

Holding on to a planner also helps you to better organize your personal life. What is the key to having a social life and good grades? The key is to find a balance. College is not only a time to learn academically, but it’s a time to grow as a person. It’s important not to neglect the social aspects of college life.

While it takes a while to figure out how much you can handle at first, after finding your routine, you can navigate your schedule in an organized manner and get the most out of your semester. If you find yourself struggling in a class or two, head over to ACE (Academic Center for Enrichment) for a personalized tutoring session! You can get good grades and still have fun in college.

Step outside of your comfort zone.

For one thing, meeting new people seems a little intimidating. But realize almost everyone is in the same boat as you. The people around you are also new students who likely do not know anyone. Put yourself out there! Go to school wide functions or dorm-hosted events. Get connected in your First Year Experience group. It’s important to take initiative — maybe even go go around your dorm and introduce yourself to new people to give yourself the opportunity to make new friends with the people you’ll be living near. You never know if who you’re meeting is your future best friend.

Volunteer and get involved.

Sometimes one of the biggest regrets students will experience as they transition into the college lifestyle is not getting involved sooner. Southeastern offers so many different opportunities for you to get involved on campus. From helping out at chapel services to joining a club, there is something for everyone here. Getting involved happens to be not only a good way to meet new people, but it’s a way to open other doors for you in the future.

Karla Colon, a senior here at SEU, started out as a volunteer for RAW TV (SEU’s very own talk show) and now she is working as the show’s producer. “I’ve never worked so hard for something before, but becoming the producer was the most rewarding feeling. I’m glad I stuck with it,” says Colon.

As you transition into college life, it can be intimidating, but you can do this! College is not just about attending classes. It is about jumping into life-changing opportunities that can help you grow academically, spiritually and professionally. Southeastern University is a great place to learn, grow and thrive.

SEU changed my life for the better, and it can do the same for you.


By Margaret Miller, Communications major at SEU

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