Those Who Wander Lost is a blog-site dedicated to the Class of 2013 but with enough room for guest contributors to share their pearls of wisdom, advice, rants, worries, and stories about college life and beyond. Posted here with permission by the author, a very close friend of mine and fellow kendoka, the talented Silverwolf of MoarPowah.com–where he gabs about all things comic-related. He’s the sites very own “Clark Kent” so to speak, also — GO WOLF PACK.
Hello everyone! For those that don’t know, I’m a close friend of Angeli, the awesome owner of this totally cool blog. Anyway, I graduated from college a little over a year ago and, during the intervening time, realized that I made a lot of good choices during my undergraduate years. I’ve listed below some things that I think everyone should do to make the most of his or her college experience. Note that they’re in no particular order of rank or importance. Here we go!
While an undergraduate, one of the keystones of my experience were the clubs I joined. Angeli has already made mention of the Kendo Club in a few of her previous posts, an organization which I participated in as well during my four years at college. The club not only allowed me to stay in shape, but also allowed me to meet lots of great people who eventually became the cornerstone of my friend group.
Ultimately, clubs are a great way to meet new people. When working, learning, and hanging out with fellow students (and sometimes even faculty), you’re bound to make friends, while picking up some new talents along the way. Even if you are a newcomer to a club, there’s no reason to fear: most clubs are welcoming. Whether its sports, arts, games, or anything else you can think of, there is guaranteed to be at least one club that you’ll enjoy if you give it a chance.
Make Use of Office Hours
I was a Math Major, and boy were those classes tough. I spent many late nights studying material I barely understood, hoping to eke out enough success on an exam thanks to the curve in order to pass each class. By my Junior year, I realized that going to Office Hours helped way more than I expected. Not only did professors and TAs offer to answer questions and help with homework, but also they suggested study methods and, often unwittingly, offered hints about what to focus on for upcoming exams.
It may seem pointless or you may feel intimidated, but Office Hours exist so that professors can help their students. Investing just one hour per week seeing your professor is often an invaluable experience and, furthermore, allows you to connect with the professor further. You may even form a deeper bond, paving the way for future networking and letters of recommendation.
Attend University Events
Every week, colleges hold dozens of events for students, sometimes even hundreds at bigger universities. Like with club activities, there is enough variety that there is something for everyone. Want to watch a new film for free? Interested in hearing professionals discuss their research? Intrigued by foreign cuisine? Attending events can connect you with these things and, once again, are a great way to meet people and make friends. Inviting friends along is also great, since you can all share in the experience.
Organize Your Own Events
This one builds off my previous example, but organizing your own events is a way to have lots of fun with your close friends. During my undergraduate career I organized (or helped organize) a few potlucks, movie outings, and parties. It was surprisingly easy, but the results were great as there’s nothing better than sharing a fun night with your comrades.
(AN: My own two cents, it actually helps a lot when you organize things ahead of time, while spontaneous moments of rolling around the city were fun, I think we reached out to a lot more people who wouldn’t have thought to hang out together without an organized meetup time and theme)
Be Flexible and Open to New Things
My mother beat the following mantra into my head for years: “be flexible.” While it grated on my nerves during my formative years, she’s absolutely right. When entering a new space, it’s a bad idea to keep your ideas completely rigid. Maybe you never had an interest in professional sports during High School, but if a couple of floormates are watching a hockey game, it’s a good idea to sit with them during the game. You may learn to love the new thing, and you may not, but making the effort is never a bad thing. If you don’t take risks, you can’t find rewards!
Anyway, that’s the end of my ramblings for the day! I hope they can potentially be useful to you all!