Freshman year is officially underway…

…and I’m definitely enjoying it! It’s quite the change, to put it lightly.

I think that my dad put it best as we were saying our emotional final goodbyes, when he mentioned that starting out in college “might just be one of the hardest things you’ll ever have to do in your life.” Let’s face it–I was comfortable at home; I had my friends, I had mastered how to do well academically, and had my family as a support system. Starting all over with a clean academic record and knowing nobody isn’t easy, but I’m definitely making progress! As huge a school Cornell is, it’s great that they house all of the freshmen on North Campus because it does build community. You do begin to see the occasional familiar faces, and slowly relationships form…

A week or two ago, I made the wise decision of attending Clubfest, held in Barton Hall. For those not in the loop, Clubfestclub is basically a showcase for all the student organizations at Cornell; each one has its’ own booth, and you walk around learning about what each one has to offer. As awesome as it was, it was also intimidating because you have to pick and choose; you can’t do all of them, and you have to balance ’em with your academics and free time as well. Each organization is trying to garner interest and support by getting your contact/e-mail information…and of course, me being the submissive, aim-to-please type I freely gave out my email. Well, that wasn’t such a bright decision–now my inbox is getting flooded with information and updates on all kinds of random events from clubs that I don’t have too much of an interest in. Ah well, live and learn.

How are classes going, you ask? Not too bad at all. I’m really enjoying my Freshman Year Writing Seminar  called Cigarette Cultures, and considering a lot of peoples’ experiences with FWS classes are hit-or-miss, I’m very satisfied! As far as the rest of them–Economics, French, Math–I’m liking them a lot too.

I’m still learning, though, what exactly I should be doing outside of class. In high school, if you have a lesson on something in a class, you’ll then be assigned readings or a worksheet. Once you’ve done the readings and worksheets for the night, YOU’RE DONE! You can then spend the rest of the night relaxing and watching 30 Rock on NBC. (No, I’m not getting paid by Tina Fey to say that–I just think it’s a hysterical show, and the new season is starting up September 23rd.) In college, the professors don’t explicitly say “read this” or “do this to understand the material”; it’s up to you to learn how you’ll learn best and optimize your performance on the exams.

I started badminton for my P.E. class, and I have to say that it’s a lot of fun. It’s also one of those “only at Cornell” types of things–where else will you get credit to hit birdies around?

As always, thanks for the comments that people are leaving on the blog! It’s nice to see that everyone from high school seniors in China to parents of freshmen are enjoying what I’m doing.

4 thoughts on “Freshman year is officially underway…

  1. Hannah

    I learned how to really manage my time well in college. High school time management is always very small-scale – your planning never has to extend any farther than a week, and more often than not it only has to extend to the next morning. College teaches you how to juggle several large-scale, long-term projects at once, which you are no doubt realizing for yourself.

    The one thing I wish I had figured out much earlier than I did is that office hours are the best thing ever, in general. To some extent it depends on the class material and the professor, but I learned the hard way that trying to rough it on your own without stopping by office hours when you really don’t understand something is *not* the greatest game plan… I have the C’s on my transcript to prove it!

    For clubs, balance is definitely good. I wish I had stuck with more of the organizations I found interesting at Clubfest freshman year (and later on, too). I dived head-first into one club right off the bat and became very heavily involved in it, which was great, but it was nearly my only activity outside of class for a couple of years. Try to keep some variety. 🙂

  2. Pingback: Essential Things that EVERY Cornell Freshman Should Know Before Arriving | Candid at Cornell

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