Social Question

meagan's avatar

Tips for out of state freshmen?

Asked by meagan (4640 points ) April 5th, 2011

Yesterday I got my acceptance letter from my school of choice.

However my choice school is on a bordering state, and I’m a little intimidated by the idea of being thrown into a new place without knowing anyone.

Do you have any tips? I’m interested in whatever advice I can get.

Especially when it comes to meeting new people, maybe some travel or packing tips—anything!

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12 Answers

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Just relax, be yourself, and realize just about everyone else is in the same boat. Travel and packing I’m not sure about. When I went to college I threw everything in the back seat of a camaro. My niece took two vehicles of stuff to college.

meagan's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe Thanks. It helps a lot that I’m going to school in a pretty small town. Everything is in walking distance. But it also means that most of the people there will be local, and probably already know each other. Eek.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@meagan I went from a small town of 2500 to Cornell U, 25000 plus. That was culture shock. But after I got adjusted I loved it.

tedd's avatar

If you can do so, don’t go to school with a b/f back home or at a far away school.

Tried it, worked for a while, crashed and burned in the end.

I graduated high school in a class of 69 (not class of 1969, 69 students), and about 10–12 of them went to the local trade school instead of my actual high school. I went to Ohio State, which hovers around 55,000 students and frequently exchanges with Central Florida and Texas for largest university in the US. The culture shock didn’t really get me that much surprisingly. I was sick of my little town anyways. Just be friendly and accept that you’re going to meet a ton of people at parties or in classes or what have you, that you will probably hang out with that one time and never see again. But you never know when you might meet a very important friend so don’t shrug everyone off.

I packed ONE car load (my own car) of stuff. Clothes, bike, tv, computer, school supplies, etc. DO NOT take an SUV full of crap or a U-Haul. You won’t need or use the majority of it anyways.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@meagan One other thought. I found a home base at college in the form of a fraternity. Others that didn’t want to join a fraternity had apartments together. It gave me a base to work from.

nir17's avatar

Don’t have a ton of expectations going in… This might sound bad, or pessimistic, but it’s not. From my experience, college is not like Van Wilder. Keep an open mind and don’t be upset if it’s not exactly how you’d pictured it. Everyone has a totally different experience.

Regardless of what you’re told about packing, you will likely pack way more than you need. Just send it back at Christmas so you don’t have a ton to move out at the end of the year.

If you’re a little worried, it’s okay. It’s normal. I went through this two years ago, and it turned out fine. It was really hard for me to adjust, especially since my major doesn’t exactly have a bunch of close-knit people. Just keep an open mind. I lived in honors housing my first year, and the people were quirky, to say the least… At first I was not very open to them, but now I’m really happy to see them when we pass on the street or run into each other. Just take each day as it comes, and if at first you don’t feel happy there, or don’t like it… don’t give up. Give it time and it will get better.

As far as relationships… just see what happens. Try not to get too tied down or too serious. Afterall, you’re probably only 18. Have fun, but take it seriously. You’re there to get your education, and trust me, I’ve seen quite a few people who don’t seem to grasp that… and end up failing miserably, not because they’re stupid, but because they don’t care. This all sounds pretty down.. but I don’t mean to! Have fun, good luck, and you’ll be fine! Take pride in knowing that you went away someone and did it on your own. On days when I feel like I should’ve stayed closer, I remind myself that at least I did it on my own.
Good luck.

Mariah's avatar

I’ve lived in upstate New York my whole life, and last year I chose a college in eastern Mass, four hours from home. So it was the same deal for me, and I’m very shy so I was worried about making friends. But even I could do it, so I know you can!

On meeting new people: Put yourself out there and don’t expect them to always come to you. This can be hard, especially if you’re shy! But if you are shy, you just really need to push yourself out of your comfort zone. You may be comfortable eating dinner by yourself, but there’s a lot to be gained and not much to be lost by approaching someone you met in class and asking if you can sit with them for dinner. Especially towards the beginning, go to every campus event that interests you. You’re likely to meet people there who share your interests. Don’t be afraid to go places alone. By that I mean, people will often skip out on activities that sound fun because they can’t find anyone to go with – that’s a missed opportunity.

On packing: If you have hobbies at home that are relaxing, pack ‘em up and bring them with you. You’ll probably want to have familiar, relaxing things to do in your spare time. Pack some Tylenol in case you get a fever. If you have a favorite book, bring it with you. That’s good escapism and familiarity for if you get homesick.

marinelife's avatar

Join some campus groups that interest you. That is a good way to meet people by working together for a cause.

Remember that you will get homesick a little bit in the beginning, but if you hang on it will get better.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

I found out who my assigned roommate was and got in touch with her before school started.

12Oaks's avatar

One in four freshman drop out and 46% never get a four year degree in 6 years. My tip? Good luck. Hope you have a Plan B, just in case.

Warning: These are government statstics, so actual numbers may vary.

BarnacleBill's avatar

Even if you think you know what you want to major in, don’t be freaked out if you change your mind the first year. The majority of students do. Even though 12 hours is considered “full time” you need 15 credit hours a semester at most schools to stay on track to graduate in 4 years. If you register for 18 hours and plan on dropping one class, it’s much easier than registering for 12 or 15, and having to try to add a class after school has started.

bolwerk's avatar

Now that it’s late 2013 (more than 2 years since OP’s question): was it so bad?

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