Dear Freshmen,

Yes, freshman year of college is stressful. You’re meeting new professors, learning new technology, navigating through buildings and classrooms and gaining the freshman 15 you didn't see coming.

Unfortunately, freshman year is not over yet. You have one semester left.

But lucky for you, the senior class commiserates with you as they were freshmen once.

About 30 percent of freshmen drop out after their first year, according to the CollegeAtlas. Don’t be that stat! Believe us, it gets better.

Here are a few tips to help you survive your second semester from your fellow upperclassmen.

So you didn’t do so well on that midterm or final. Here’s what you can do for next time.

“Don’t leave everything for the night before. Make notes on everything you have to study and actually take the time to organize everything. Definitely go to CASE, the tutors are there to help,” said senior Keiry Romero.

The Center For Academic Success and Engagement, CASE, is located at McDermott Hall in the lower level. It is open from Monday to Friday.

Spending too much money while on campus? Need to save up?

The National Association of College Stores says that the average college student will spend $655 a year. However, according to the College Board, the average student may spend $1,298 just on supplies.

“Instead of the bookstore some professors have a copy of the textbook in the library, there’s also Chegg and Amazon Prime for students. Bring lunch from home, or create a meal plan,” said senior Johana Velasquez.

If you are juggling between school, a part-time job and homework, keep this in mind.

“Create a weekly schedule and visually see the time you have available. That way you’re aware what best times would work for studying, working, socializing,” said senior Nicole Reyes.

If you’re not good with planners you can always opt for a virtual planner, like Google Calendar, which sends notifications to your devices as an important date or assignment approaches.

Are you a commuter?

There’s always a rush hour where traffic is the worse and keeps you from making it to the shuttle on time. The shuttle can get full quickly too. If you're running late and miss the shuttle, here's what you can do.

“Plan ahead so you have enough time in case you miss the bus. You can always call campus security to notify a shuttle driver that you are waiting, so don’t wait without calling you may be waiting until the end of the semester,” said senior Eileen Torres.

Visit the Saint Peter's website for more information on campus security. If you need a shuttle to your location you can call (201) 761-7400.

Don’t ignore the syllabus!

The syllabus your professor handed out in the beginning of semester, it’s actually really important.

“Follow the syllabus, professors might give you a notice but it is definitely not like high school where the teachers are constantly reminding the students. It’s your responsibility to be on your a-game and get what needs to be done when it needs to be done,” said senior Kimberly Baez.

And yes, professors can be strict at first, but you’d be surprised who ends up writing your recommendation letter.

Don’t be shy, join a club.

Think about how great that would look on your resume and all the connections you could make. Saint Peter’s has a more than 50 clubs for students to join that fit in to your major or interests.

A list of all the clubs in the school can be found on the Saint Peter’s website and you can also learn more from the Peacock Connect.

Overall there are a lot of things going on your freshman year, but each year will be different. Don’t sweat it, keep these tips in mind for the upcoming years:

  • Maintain a planner
  • Read your syllabi thoroughly
  • Plan your meals
  • Have a spending budget
  • Plan your commute to school
  • Keep important phone numbers
  • Join clubs
  • Talk to your professors during their office hours
  • Get help if you need it

We know how you feel, and there are better days than others. Just know that you are not alone in this and it’s okay to ask for help. It is worth it in the end.

Sincerely,

Seniors

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