I remember all throughout high school continuously looking forward to college, looking forward to new adventures, new people and new freedoms. But I never really knew what college was like until I actually experienced it for myself. In my first few months of classes, I’ve learned a thing or two that can help you make the most out of your educational transition after you leave the high school hallways and take on your new life at a university. 

 Explore. Never in your life will you have more time, less responsibility, and more freedom than you will in college. This is the time to explore — travel abroad, take a weekend road trip, even travel to new places in your city! It is easy to stay within the “university bubble” during your first year, but don’t miss out on fun events, restaurants and sights your college town or city has to offer. However, exploring does not only include travel. Explore new interests; give a new club a try. In my first few weeks of college, I discovered a baking and pastry club. Little did I know it would become one of my favorite activities and stress-relievers. 

Challenge yourself. This is something that will probably happen without you even trying. When you are thrown into a completely new environment, regardless of how far away you are from home, it is a challenge. But nobody said it would be easy! That comfort zone you stayed in during high school will rapidly expand, and that’s a good thing. It can be terrifying, but do new things. People always say, “life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”

It’s not about where you go; it’s about what you make of it. No matter where you end up going to school, whether it was your first or last choice, it is up to you to make it an incredible experience. Opportunities are everywhere; it’s up to you to work for them and make them within your reach. Seek out people who are doing great things on campus, and get to know them; find projects you are passionate about. The school you go to does not define who you are, but aids in building you into the amazing person you will become. 

I didn’t know what to expect when I got to school, being so far away from home, but you figure it out, accept the opportunities for growth, take on the challenges, soak in the adventures that come your way and have an amazing time while doing it. I’m still learning how everything works, but I’ll keep you posted on my progress.