Beating the Freshman Jitters
Adjusting to life on campus can be difficult for some students, but there are ways to make the transition smoother.
For many Boston University freshmen, starting college and adjusting to life on campus is exciting, fun — and utterly nerve-wracking.
“For many first-year students, this will be the first time they are responsible for getting themselves up and ready to go, keeping track of their schedules, and self-motivating in general,” says Beth Grampetro, health and wellness educator for the Office of Residence Life. “Also, sometimes the dizzying amount of choices on a college campus, both academically and socially, can be hard to adjust to. Some people are literally paralyzed by having too many things to choose from and to juggle.”
Successful freshmen familiarize themselves with, and take advantage of, the campus resources available to help them academically and socially, Grampetro says. “Ask for help,” she advises. “If you’re not sure how to do something or where something is or if you’re just overwhelmed, ask your RA, your advisor, your professor, or a friend — don’t try to do it alone. And don’t be afraid to drop an activity if you find it has become too much for you.”
To help combat homesickness and the nerves that can creep up during the first few weeks of school, Grampetro suggests getting out and meeting people. “Don’t be nervous about approaching other students at an event on campus or even in the dining hall,” she says. “Other first-year students want to make new friends, just like you do. Talk to someone in class you don’t know — you might meet a new friend to study with or hang out with on weekends.”
But freshmen shouldn’t just stick to the campus, either; Grampetro also recommends exploring the city. Mementos from home and staying in touch with high school friends can make the transition easier, “but not so much that you disregard the opportunity to do things with people here at BU,” she says.
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