After two full weeks of classes, it’s safe to say that fall semester is now in full swing. I have
always found it hard to fully transition back into the swing of classes, homework and overall
simply finding a routine. I remember coming to UND last year, and having no idea what to
expect and I somehow ended up doing just fine.
The most important thing you need to know about transitioning to college is that everything
depends on you. Don’t let this scare you, but instead remember this: I was a high schooler going
into freshman year last year, and many people told me that, “professors don’t care if you go to
class” or “professors don’t care if you don’t do your homework.” This is not true; professors
have several students that they teach throughout the academic year and they do care. However,
they also know that they cannot force you to do anything. Professors don’t necessarily want to
show up and teach students course material who does not care about taking the course seriously.
They care about their students and their success because it is an aspect of their jobs.
My definition of “everything depends on you” means that you are responsible for your own
decisions. You are now responsible for everything you do, you have the choice to attend class or
not and you have the power to complete that extra credit assignment or ignore it. Everything is
your choice. However, I have some tips and tricks that helped me transition back into the swing
of things. Whether you are an incoming freshman or just someone looking for advice, I am here
Something that helped me a lot was surrounding myself with people who took academics
seriously. To me, there is nothing more motivating than studying or doing homework with
people who are equally as invested in academics because it challenged me in many different
ways. I think it allowed room for me to practice time management. As well as allowing me to get
more creative with my work from reciting helpful feedback and collaborating ideas with these
people has allowed me to get more creative with my ideas.
Another thing that really helped me was taking advantage of the study spaces offered on campus.
In previous years, I found that many students liked to do their work at the Memorial Union but
since it’s being rebuilt, other great study rooms include: Wilkerson Commons, Chester Fritz
library, Archives, O’Kelly and the study rooms offered in dorms are great if you just need a quiet
Another thing to be mindful of is being and staying organized. Having good organization skills
never hurt anyone. If you tend to be on the disorganized side of things, consider investing in a
planner or making a to-do list. I cannot stress enough how much having a planner helped me.
Every Monday, I would go on Blackboard, look at our lessons and assignments due for the week,
and write them all down. I would then number each of those tasks in order of what needed to be
prioritized first and then do the tasks. There’s just something about crossing a task off the list
that makes me feel so accomplished.
Those are some tips that helped me a lot through the transition. Now I know that these may be
somewhat ‘obvious’ but if you really do follow through with these tips and prioritize your
studies, you can be successful during this transition!
Make sure to find a good balance between your academics and having fun, because it’s still so
important to make the most of it while you’re at school. Best of luck this school year everyone!