As a recent college graduate, I learned many things in college that went beyond academics. In fact, I think these lessons are the ones that will stick with me longer than anything I learned in class. So here is my list of 18 things I learned as an undergrad student!

UNASSIGNED ASSIGNED SEATS

I used to hate having an assigned seat but in college, once I sat somewhere on the first day of classes, that is where I am sitting till the last day of classes. Respect the unassigned assigned seat rule. 

THERE IS NO SCHOOL BELL

There is no bell. Sometimes, I would leave class after 20 minutes. This wasn’t often but, if my teacher was done teaching, we were done for the day. 

GROUP PROJECTS ARE NO FUN

With everyone on different schedules in college, you might find it impossible to meet up to work on group projects. Worst case scenario, you end up doing the whole project yourself.

IT’S COOL TO EMBRACE YOUR INNER CHILD

I broke out my scooter after five years of storing it once I started college. Scooters are fun and they get you places faster. 

PROFESSORS ARE MORE RELATABLE THAN YOU THINK

Once you get to college, your professors are more comfortable than ever sharing stories about their young adulthood with you. Also, some require you to call them by their first name. That took some getting used to.

YOU DON’T HAVE TO ASK TO GO TO THE BATHROOM

However, some people just walk out and don’t come back to class!

NAPS

In college, I tried to take a nap at noon every day for four years. I would schedule my classes so that I was mostly done by noon. Then, I would run to the train and spent the next hour just sleeping.

HIGH SCHOOL WHO?

When my freshman seminar professor told the class to not put our high school information on our resumes anymore, I was shocked. I had dedicated hours of my life into my extra curriculars and suddenly, they didn’t matter much. Whether you like it or not, no one cares about your high school accomplishments once you get to college. So if you didn’t do so well on the ACT? Is doesn’t matter anymore because you got into college! Now, you need new accomplishments. 

EVERYONE IS JUST AS LOST AS YOU ARE

Some people might seem like they know what’s going on in class but you’ll be surprised to learn, there is probably someone just as confused as you. So if you feel like you’re falling behind, don’t worry. Don’t be afraid to ask a teacher, a TA, or a tutor for help. That’s what they’re there for. 

GROUP CHATS ARE YOUR BEST FRIEND

If there is a group chat for a class, make sure to join in! This way, you’ll stay updated on any assignments that might be due and might even join some study groups whenever there is a big exam coming up. 

REGISTRATION IS STRESSFUL

In high school, my classes were basically pre-selected for me. In college, it’s a whole different game. Registration was the most terrifying minute of my life. My heart rate doubled and sweat pooled up at my fingertips. Every muscle in my arms was strained as I rushed to search up classes and add them to my schedule. And there’s nothing that can compare to the feeling of taking the last seat in a class. 

THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH BEING ALONE

One of my favorite things to do in college was go on walks alone. I liked walking from campus to the train station and vice versa. Not only did I get a little bit of exercise, it also gave me time to think. In high school, I would never want to be caught doing anything alone but in college, I appreciate every minute of alone time I can get. So no, there’s nothing wrong with going on a walk alone, going to the gym alone, or even eating alone! Sometimes, it’s relaxing to have a moment with just yourself.

YOU HAVE TO BUY THE TEXTBOOK

Also it’s $100. Oh yeah, and your professor wrote the book. No, you can’t use a free copy you downloaded on your laptop. 

YOU’LL LOVE YOUR SNACKS

I don’t remember the last time I had a proper lunch, but I can tell you my favorite granola bar brands, which I consume hourly. 

GETTING A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP IS FOREIGN TO YOU

Thankfully, I have my hourly nap at noon to get me through the day. 

COMFORT IS KEY

I often planned to wear jeans but then ended up in sweatpants because comfort is key in college. 

YOU HAVE TO READ THE TEXTBOOK

And the class notes. And create a transcript of everything your professor says in classes. All of this will be on the final exam. Yes, it’s cumulative. 

YOUR GRADES WON’T MATTER TEN YEARS FROM NOW

This was something I had to come to terms with. I used to beat myself up over getting even a B. However, as time went by, I started to understand that once I’m in the real world, my B on an exam that has nothing to do with my career field will not matter to anyone. So don’t beat yourself up over a bad grade. Life goes on!

Come back to the Future Blog for more articles on college and career success!