You’ve just finished high school and finally have the independence you’ve always wanted.
But, what now?
You no longer rely on your parents like you used to, you have to develop a sense of self-discipline, effectively manage your social life and school time, and, even worse, at some point you’ll have to learn to manage money and do taxes.
This whole “growing up” thing is tough, but if you follow these five steps, your transition to Central Michigan University might be a little smoother. (We’ll worry about taxes later.)
1. Get involved
There are numerous clubs, registered student organizations, sororities, fraternities, jobs, sports and more to become involved with. As a freshman, it can be intimidating, but there really isn’t a reason to be shy or to feel lonely.
CMU offers an endless amount of opportunities for students to join in, so do it! The whole point of RSOs and the many other groups on campus is to allow students the chance to feel welcomed and surround themselves with people with whom they share a common interest with.
Take a chance and get involved.
2. Take care of yourself
Now that you are an adult, it is your responsibility to take care of yourself. You will no longer have your parents there to make sure you eat a serving of vegetables every day or to fix your flat tire.
It’s time you set an alarm, do your own laundry, eat a balanced diet and find time to workout. Take care of yourself, because no one else will.
3. Stay connected
It’s always good to be in the know and to be aware of your surroundings. Attend on-campus events.
Trust me, there are a ton. While you’re at it, get others to attend with you. Bring a roommate or friend and experience something new together. I encourage everyone to stay connected with campus as much as possible.
4. Take advantage of the fresh start
You are now granted a fresh start with an enormous amount of opportunities. Take advantage of being able to study what you want. Take advantage of everything the campus has to offer.
Make it a point to actually go to the Student Activity Center and sign up for that intramural sport you’ve always wanted to try. When else will you get to play an organized game of hitting a hockey puck with a broom at 2 a.m.?
Never, that’s when.
5. Be yourself
You are no longer in your hometown. You have a newfound freedom to be who you want and to do what you want, so do it. Enjoy every moment. College should be one of the best times of your life, so make the best of it. Be who you are.