First-year college students are beginning to settle in. We wish you the best of luck on your college career. But, we also want you to be a wise scholar! Today, a college degree is not all that is needed for a successful future. You next four years in college should be a time of study and learning, but you should consider more.
Here is some advice for college students to use their time as best they can:
Your freshman year:
- You will need to take certain basic survey courses and courses required for your projected major. But, don’t forget to take courses for your future, beyond college. This is a time to acquire communication skills. Be sure to take a course in writing and/or public speaking. These skills will help you in future course work and in your career.
- You are also more marketable if you can speak multiple languages. Think about taking some language courses, especially Arabic and Mandarin.
- Begin to network with alumni and with faculty who could give you good job advice and job leads. Visit the Alumni Center to see if they have alumni mentoring programs.
- Also, get acquainted with your campus Career Center. No, it’s not too early. Take personality tests to see what you are best fit for in work. Also ask for direction in what to study to further interests you have.
Your sophomore year:
- Time to take math courses for your future. We recommend accounting and personal finance courses.
- Narrow down the number of clubs, organizations, and teams you participate in so you can start to stand out.
- Try volunteering.
Your junior year:
- This is the year you declare your major. Stay in close contact with your academic advisor to make sure you meet all completion requirements for your degree.
- Think about study abroad.
- Get involved with a professional or community organization off campus to broaden your experience.
Your senior year:
- If you have electives you still can take, think about honing skills you have seen are necessary for a future job based on your job and intern experience during your summers. Future teachers, for instance, might want to take developmental psychology.
- Try for a leadership position in organizations and activities you have been participating in.
- Practice resume and job interviewing skills, and look for job leads.
Yes, college is for study and fun, but it is also the stepping stone to your future. Be sure to take advantage of all opportunities college can offer.