Great Times Start with Good Choices
When looking back at my time at Bowling Green State University, I have a lot to reflect on. Going to college is not easy, and there are many obstacles to overcome. Classes are hard, you are away from home, and you encounter new people and a new environment. But, there are ways to set yourself up for success. Although you might be enjoying a summer break, it is never too early to start thinking about the next school year. To ensure my school years always started on the right foot, and my college career was successful, I did a few things:
- First, go out of your comfort zone and do some research on all the things your university has to offer you. Before arriving on campus, look into the different organizations and clubs available to students. This will help you understand what things you want to get involved with before arriving on campus. Find something you love, something you are passionate about, or even something you want to learn more about. There is something for everyone! For me, this was fraternity/sorority life.
- Second, it is up to YOU to make the right choices. Going to college is the first time most students are fully on their own. College is about becoming responsible for your time, actions, and your relationships. There is no one to tell you what to do anymore. Think about what you want to accomplish and set goals for yourself. For me, I came to college wanting to grow my leadership skills and become a community leader … and I did that. I was able to do this because of the good choices I made when it came to my time management, my actions, and my relationships with others. Always ask yourself if what you are doing is going to help you reach your goals or set you back. Always do what will help you take steps forward. Know yourself, know your limits, and know what makes you confident.
- Third, get organized! This is my biggest piece of advice for all students starting a new academic year. Make a list of all the items you may need. Learn what you can and cannot live without. Having too much stuff is not ideal. You need to feel in control, and being crowded and unorganized does not allow you to flourish. I struggled with this when I first came to college. I thought having more was better. I quickly learned that having too much stuff makes you feel stressed and overwhelmed. Once I cut down on all my stuff, I felt more in control of everything, and I was no longer so overwhelmed all the time. If I can do it, so can you!
While making good choices, getting involved, and staying organized, it is also important to enjoy your time in college and have fun. Be kind, be confident, and be determined. If you find what motivates you, you will be successful. Meet new people every year, go out of your way for others, and try new things. I challenge all of you to try something new and out of your comfort zone at the beginning of every school year. You are the author of your own story!