C O L L E G E …
Ohmygosh……college is starting in just a few short weeks and for some, starting freshman year! Ahh, what I would give to be a college freshman again. The joy and nerves of starting over in an unfamiliar place with new classes, professors, and textbooks…AND decorating a small shoebox dorm room. But let’s be real, I’m glad I graduated and ready to decorate my first apartment, move to a new city (HOPEFULLY), and be independent (sort of). However, there are some things I would go back and tell my freshman year self.
1. Join clubs and organizations.
I cannot stress this enough. I wish I became more involved with PRSSA (Public Relations Student Society of America). That organization involved me with internship/job opportunities, learning experiences into the industry itself, and getting to know more colleagues and professors. I know you’re in your freshman year, but you can never start too early! Any major has an in-major club/organization/pre-professional society. Consider joining one right away! Get on their council and get some great experience.
2. Making friends…
When you get to college sweet child, one of the first things on your mind is going to be making friends. Of course, moving to a new place you want to find a “group” of people to hang out with and spend time with outside of classes. Honey, you’ll make lots of friends in your college years. Your roommate, hallmates, classmates…even that boy you’ll meet somewhere standing in line for food. Don’t worry if you don’t make friends right away. The right friendships will come. God puts certain people in your life at certain times for a reason.
You will make lots of friends in college. Whether they be “class friends” where you can share notes and study together in the library, “dorm friends” where you have movie nights on any night of the week, or those lifelong friends whom will be your bridesmaids someday. And then there are the friends who are in between, who come and go. Those type of friends are important too. Each one helps shape the person who you will become.
3. Jobs, internships, & rejection.
In college, you’ll face rejection. From jobs, internships, and even relationships. It sucks, it really does. But do not let that get you down. You were meant for great things. God wants you to fail. But also, God wants you to succeed. Rejection is just a part of his great plan for you. Proverbs has this amazing verse that I turn to whenever I feel this type of rejection: Trust in the Lord with all your heart. When you get that rejection email or that guy ghosts you, trust in the Lord!
Just remember this: each rejection leads you to an even bigger success.
4. Drinking, frat parties, & boys. Yes, boys.
I have to address this because once you’re in college sweet child you’re going to be tempted to go out. I was once there, your roommate was once there…trust me, everyone in college is tempted to go to a party at least once in the four years. If you absolutely have no curiosity of what a college party looks like and you feel more comfortable staying in or hanging out with friends some other way, then that is perfectly fine! Do whatever you want. But if you have a slight inclination to go, go! However, be safe. I cannot stress this ENOUGH — do not look away from your drink ever. Go out with close friends. Do not drive drunk…for the love of God, that’s why they created rideshare services like Uber and Lyft (this isn’t sponsored, I just care for your well-being). Just be safe and follow your instincts. If you don’t want to go home with that guy you just met even though he’s gentle and nice and cares for you, wait until the morning! If he still wants to take you to brunch the next morning without you going home with him the night before, then he’s worth it. But if he ghosts you the next morning, he’s NOT WORTH IT. I’ve seen guys do that to girls too many times for you to get sucked into the “ghosting” train, too.
5. Staying true to yourself.
What could I possibly talk about in this point?! Endless things, sweet child. The biggest piece of advice I can give you is staying true to yourself. I like to include following your gut, always choosing what you want to do, and doing what makes you genuinely happy. Butttt….that kind of also leads into losing yourself a little bit. Ya know, college is about “experimentation” and “finding yourself” both in and out of the classroom. Still staying safe, but if you are ever afraid to try something new, try it anyway! Sometimes the best things in life come from getting over a fear and doing it anyway. But always, stay true to yourself.
6. Make friends with your professors!
Along with the professional organizations, I cannot stress enough the relationship between a student and a professor. Before this goes into “The Graduate” territory, I mean getting to know your professors and taking advantage of their office hours! Ask them questions about upcoming tests. I wish I took more advantage of office hours — these professors can help you lead to that dream job after college! And also can give you extra credit.
7. Your body, your rules.
Comparing yourself to other girls on social media can be so easy. “She has perfect toned legs” or “her flat stomach looks so effortless” reflects the physical comparisons, but what about what’s on the inside? In college, I never 100% listened to the people who said to love your body no matter what size you are. Those people who told me that were size 0-2. But now I get it. If you don’t love your body, how do you expect other people to love you for what counts? If you don’t love your body, how do you expect you to love other awesome traits? What about your awesome ability to crank out three blog posts in a day? What about the time when you pulled an all-nighter to finish that group project?
let’s change the game for a moment. Instead of saying “love your body”, say something like “I love the way I am.” Because yeah girl, God created you the way that you are. Your body, your rules.
It’s your body. Don’t change who you are based on what some boy or a couple of mean girls said to you. DRESS SIZES CAN’T DEFINE YOU. YOU DEFINE YOU. Only God and you can define your worth. You can be whatever you want. If you want to change your dress size, you can do it. If you wanna eat that Chipotle burrito, do it. Our bodies are our temples, not trophies as Jordan Dooley once said.
8. Call your Mom.
Alright, moms, you can stop reading because I finally got to your point. Girls, call your mom as you head off to college. Because this isn’t only your change. Your mom raised you for 18 years and is now setting you free to the all-night study sessions, frat boys, and all-you-can-eat brunch. Your mom is adjusting, too. So whenever you have a free moment to talk, rant, or vent, call your mom. She’ll be there listening to every word and offer advice for anything. I called my mom probably twice a day up until the day I graduated.
9. Sorority life isn’t for everyone, but it might be for you.
I was in a sorority in college. Sometimes I regretted it, but overall, I see my experience in Greek life as…life-changing. OK before you call me dramatic, I want to remind everyone what Dictionary.com defines sorority: a society or club of women or girls, especially in a college. Sweet child, if you want to join a sorority, do it. If you want to join for the “parties” (which I don’t think you do anyway), then click out of this post. But I will tell you: a sorority is more than the social aspect. My sorority brought me lifelong friendships. It taught me to never let go of the friends it gave me. My sorority brought me open leadership experience, working in a team of like-minded individuals, and a large community of whole-hearted, beautiful sisters. And Meghan Markle (if ya know, ya know).
If you have the slightest bit inclination of rushing a sorority, DO IT. You will not regret it. tbh, if you have any other questions about rushing, just slide into my DMs and I will be more than happy to answer any rush/sorority questions!
10. Jesus loves you.
Ah last but CERTAINLY not least, I want to remind you dear girl that you are loved by the One himself. He wants you to succeed, fail, and call your mom. He wants the very best for you. Although you’ll face temptation and rejection, it will only lead you on the path with Him, the path to righteousness. Jesus loves you, dear girl. And that’s the best type of love there is.
Are you starting college soon?! Or are you taking a victory lap? Let me know in the comments below!!