TROY counselor offers tips to make transition to college life easier

Posted: Wednesday, 19 December 2007

TROY— For many students, the freshman year of college is an exciting time but it doesn’t necessarily have to be a stressful time, according to counselors at Troy University.

TROY counselor and Director of Student Development Teresa Rodgers said following a few guidelines will make that transition to college life easier.

“I think the first thing to tell them is that they’re normal because most students come in their first semester not knowing what they are going to face and what issues there are going to be and that college in the first few months is so much fun,” said Rodgers. “Most people have confidence and then they do poorly. There is that shock factor that sits in.”

Along with the shock factor from trying to become independent, Rodgers says that money becomes an important issue. “They have had money and they are starting to feel the squeeze along with their academic requirements,” said Rodgers. “They procrastinate and you add to that most students spend their money in the first half of the year and don’t budget. Then, they are stressed and out of money.”

Rodgers said that parents and students both have high expectations when the student enters college. This alone can provide a main source of stress. “College is a step by step process, and it takes some maturity and growth to get over that hump,” said Rodgers. “They need encouragement from family and friends and instructors”.

To help entering or continuing freshmen adapt to the college lifestyle, Rodgers gave these pointers that she believes is crucial in the process.

  • Many students spend so much time being social, that they forget to have a healthy amount of food and rest. Eat healthy foods. Instead of grabbing chips and a large drink, opt for fruit instead to avoid bottoming out.
  • Exercise frequently. That doesn’t mean walking from the parking lot to the building; but, do regular, routine exercise.
  • Don’t procrastinate. You are going to have to tackle what you know you need to do, get it done early or everything starts piling on top of each other. Don’t wait until mid point in the semester.
  • If you fail a class, repeat it. Some students come to college and fail a class not being used to it. They feel humiliated. Failure is a part of college. If you fail a class or do poorly, repeat it. Take it with a different instructor or at a different time of day.
  • Be persistent. Lots of students quit college because of finances. Our financial aid office aids a huge amount of people.
  • Be realistic with what you know you are able to accomplish.
  • I truly believe that all things need to be in moderation. Don’t overdue anything. Anything that is worth anything is going to take effort.
Pied Pipers

The Troy University Pied Pipers are back in action after several years as part of the Department of Speech and Theatre’s First-Year Initiative aimed at helping freshman become successful. (TROY photo)