By Michelby Whitehead 

Your first semester of college is always epic, especially if you live on campus. The feeling of restriction from parents and high school administrators nagging you about curfews and fashion is obsolete, and you actually feel “grown” now. You’re making your own decisions and going places you’ve never been, making college a place where you can not only hone your leadership skills but also start adulting properly! 

Even if you’re killing it in the grades department, that doesn’t mean you’ve mastered social skills or how to be an effective communicator and leader. Having a well-rounded college experience is super important, and sitting in the dorm or library for hours upon hours is just as bad as partying all the time.   

Regardless of your major, or whether you’re introverted or extroverted, you want to be the type of woman who exudes confidence without saying a word. Think Michelle Obama and Jeannie Mai. Here’s some advice from someone who’s been in your shoes before: me!  

Get a Job   

I know, I know. You signed up for college to have your parents take care of you a little while longer, not to prematurely become an adult. Hear me out, sis. Having an on-campus job puts money in your pocket and it allows you to have more options than just depending on the parentals. And life itself is about OPTIONS. When you carry your own cash, you spend how you please!  

Here’s the kicker: If your parents, and maybe even grandparents, are elated and proud of you for assuming responsibility, they may reward you even more. Cha-ching!   

In addition to financial empowerment, having a campus gig teaches you professionalism and how to deal with bosses and supervisors before your real career unfolds.  

Join a Sisterhood  

I didn’t join a sorority in college, but it may be great for those who grew up without siblings or didn’t have a mother figure. My friends who participated in sorority life said they enjoyed the community-service projects, meeting guys in fraternities, and the networking it provided. When you’re looking for an internship or insight on what professors to avoid, having a tribe of sisters can come in handy.   

Join the Club  

There’s a club for everything and everyone on a college campus. You can join something specific to your major, religion, or the hobbies you already love. I majored in mass communication, so writing for the school newspaper was a no-brainer. But my cousin was a shy sociology major who begged me to join her in the sociology club, and I enjoyed that too! I became a mini Renaissance woman by joining the food association, student programming association, and a slew of other auxiliaries.  

This type of campus involvement looks great on paper and can help you get an interview once you start job seeking.  

What tips do you have for someone in college? 

 

Photo by Omar Lopez on Unsplash

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