Given as the school year just ended and there are often people who seek advice regarding one’s first year of college, I wanted to be able to share some things I learned in the past ten months. Despite the fact that I have already been through college (I’m currently taking my BA in Photographer), there was this part of me that wanted to go through the whole educational process. Although taking up music was rather enjoyable, I still wanted to learn something new and be able to implement that into my future career.
Photography is something I’ve loved for the past five and a half years and there is so much more to it than just snapping a photo or two. It requires passion and dedication, something we artsy fartsies need in order to get by. With that, here’s some advice I’d like to share.
1. Never let anyone take credit for something you worked hard for. There are always going to be instances wherein people will ask to be in your group, but don’t end up doing anything at all. In my World Literature class, each group had to accomplish a project, be it a film teaser; an infographic, or “group study” room. My friend and I decided to do work on a film teaser because neither of us was blessed with incredible drawing skills. There was this one person in my class who asked to join our group, but didn’t do ANYTHING at all. It was completely frustrating, as I ended up doing the dirty work. If ever you are in my position, just work by yourself or group with people who have a great work ethic.
2. In relation to that, I encourage you to attend class. College isn’t about partying it up until the wee hours, getting drunk and having sex. You attended college in order to get good grades and thus, graduate. Attending class is important because professors usually base their tests on the lessons being presented. Aside from that, you’ll never know if you’ll need that extra credit!
3. Do not cram your papers and projects. A lot of people at my school would get stressed the week leading to midterms and/or finals because of cramming. I would highly recommend getting stuff done at least a week or two before the due date, so that you have time to revise whatever it is you have accomplished thus far.
4. Study at least an hour or two everyday (if necessary). The reason I became a consistent honour student is that I make it a habit to study for certain subjects for at least an hour or two daily, even on Saturdays and Sundays. That way, you familiarize yourself with the lesson/s and come to class with knowledge.
5. Keep track of the things you need to get done by writing ‘em down in a planner. Writing what you need to get done down instead of memorizing it is very important, as you’ll be able to keep better track of everything you need to accomplish. I have learned that memorizing is the worst form of studying and writing down stuff is great in terms of memory.
6. Talk to your professors. Something I learned these past months is that professors love it when students make an effort to engage in conversations with them.
7. It’s okay to be picky with friends. In college, you’ll learn that some people would only try and befriend you when they feel that it’s necessary, but won’t be there when the tables have turned. Be aware of the people you surround yourself with because their attitude and ethic will end up rubbing off on you.
8. Make sure to enlist online on the day you have to. Some of my friends have complained in the past about manually enlisting for their classes. I would recommend enlisting online, as you’ll have a better chance of getting your desired schedule rather than getting a horrible one.
9. Take a speech class! Speaking is a key form of communication and it’s something we do on a day to day basis anyway. Taking a speech class will help you get comfortable in front of people and allow you to become more confident as each session goes by.
10. Lastly, be confident and try to accomplish things that scare you. College is the greatest outlet for you to develop as a person.