How to Thrive in Your First Semester
Your first semester at university will likely be the most difficult because everything is completely new. You’ll need to learn how things work, adapt to living independently, and start making friends. Although this may be challenging at times, there are strategies you can use to ensure you thrive in all aspects of your student life.
1. Use a Calendar or Planner
Staying organized makes a huge difference at university, but it’s impossible to remember everything if you don’t write it down. Make a note of your class schedule, requirements and deadlines for assignments, and upcoming dates for meetings and social events. You can use the calendar and other apps on your phone or invest in a planner. It also helps to create a study schedule to keep yourself on track with readings and large projects that will take several weeks to complete.
2. Attend Your Classes
Although attendance is often optional, you should aim to go to all your classes. It’s much better to hear the information firsthand and use your own notes than to rely on notes that a classmate took. Plus, classes are a great way to network with people studying the same major and to get to know your professors — who could be valuable contacts in the future.
3. Take Advantage of New Opportunities
Every once in a while, try to attend events you’re not even sure you’ll enjoy. Whatever happens, you’ll learn more about yourself and have experiences you’ll never forget. There will be all sorts of opportunities to participate on campus — from sports teams to organizations and clubs. All are great ways to meet people, discover new interests, and give yourself a break from your studies. Plus, there’s often free food, which means one less meal to worry about.
4. Look for a Job
With a part-time job, you can earn enough to cover your expenses and perhaps even pay some of your tuition. It’s best if you can find work related to your career goals, but any kind of work will enhance your resume and make it easier to find a job after you graduate.
5. Stay in Touch with Friends and Family
Text your family back home and friends attending other universities on a regular basis. You may even like to arrange occasional video chats. Hearing from people you’ve known almost forever can be a huge mood lifter.
6. Explore Your Surroundings
Make sure that your experience at university encompasses the wider area. Invite some friends to check out tourist destinations, walk in the parks, and eat local treats with you.
7. Spend Time Alone
Don’t neglect having time just for yourself. Taking classes, attending events, and working can become overwhelming. Remember that you don’t need to always be busy — sometimes there’s nothing better than relaxing.
You’ll find it easier to succeed with your classes, meet new people, and generally just thrive during your first semester if you live in student housing close to campus. You can find apartments near Carleton University at the Revalie. As well as receiving a luxury suite, you’ll be able to use the three vignette areas for recording film and audio productions, the games room, the fitness centre with its yoga and pilates studio, and the full commercial-grade kitchen. Take a video or virtual tour to see where you could be living.