F is for the Freshman 5

Hi all! I’m Kari Wissel, a sophomore marketing major, fashion minor at Ball State University. Lover of all things fashion, I hope to find my way into the field and work on the business side of the branch. I have a passion for adventures, and love anything creative. I am so excited to be able to write these columns and help make your college experience the absolute best.

Freshman year is probably the biggest and most influential year of your life… thus far. What’s amazing about it is that you have the option of making it whatever you want it to be. Absolutely anything. You can completely recreate yourself, or continue growing as the astounding person we are sure you already are. There are five very obvious, but very important things that can make or break your freshman year.


  1. Priorities, priorities, priorities. Keep in mind that you are at school, for school. It is amazing to finally be on your own and have that independence but make sure you use that in a positive and productive way. You will find out that once you get to college, getting bad grades is no longer the “cool” or “bad boy” thing to do. No one is here to try and do badly, everyone is actually trying to do the best and you should as well! Stay focused, stay motivated, seek help if needed, and be a nerd. It’s in style, and definitely pays off.


  1. Get involved. I do not say this lightly. Go out of your way to find clubs, organizations, or teams that interest you and go for it. This will connect you with a ton of other people with the same interests as you! Take a breath, gain some confidence, and just join! Plus, this can help solve some homesickness you may be experiencing and a super easy way to foster new friendships.


  1. Stay healthy. This is definitely a part of school that becomes a little hard for a lot of students. Most freshmen live on campus and that comes along with a meal plan and lots of food that is both mysterious and fattening. College campuses across the country have really started to push eating healthy and having health foods available for students which is awesome! You should utilize these extra options and look into it. With a lot of studying and late nights, your body begins to slow down, and all the extra junk food that is constantly available can be very bad for your health. Doing some exercise on a regular basis, and thinking about what your eating can make a big difference and help you avoid that horrid freshman fifteen.


  1. Something that most people don’t think about freshman year would be preparing for after college. Obviously, you still have at least four years until you will actually be in the real world BUT there is no time too soon to start getting ready for it. Start getting involved in things that help you with career development, and professional skills. Create a new resume and work on building that. It is also never too early to start looking for internships and campus jobs for experience. It makes you more well-rounded and eye-catching for future employers. Getting into the careers you want are a competition in a way, so make yourself more appealing and stand out.


  1. Find yourself. This is a huge part of the whole college experience. It shapes you into the person you will be for the rest of your life. Get out there, experiment, try new things. Get away from home, find a new home, find new friends, new interests. Do things you’ve never done before. These are experiences that you will forever remember and possibly love doing for the rest of your life. Knowing exactly who you, what you want and where you want to go is such a mind blowing and beautiful thing… start now.
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