12 Things Every Student Should Do in Their Freshman Year of College 

The first year of college is the best time to meet new people, make new friends, and learn more about yourself. To have the best freshman year, here are 12 things every college student should do in their first year.

Recent college grad suggests these 12 things that every first-year student should do. (Twenty20 @carbonem)

12 things to do your freshman year of college

1. Go to a football game or school sporting event 

Attending a football game or sporting event will truly show you what school spirit looks like. Dress in your gameday outfit, head to the stadium with a couple of friends, and cheer on your team! 

2. Join a club or Greek life

Joining a club is the ideal way to network and gain friends with interests similar to yours. Greek life is another excellent option to find your people as a freshman, and this will also keep you busy with tons of social and philanthropy events. 

3. Try every dining hall on campus

Often, each dining hall on campus will have slightly different foods. Give each one a try to figure out which one you like the best! This is a fun way to branch out of your comfort zone and try something new.

4. Start a study group 

Starting a study group is a great way to meet other students in your class. If your course has a GroupMe, suggest a time and place (such as a coffee shop or the library) for students to meet up to prepare for an upcoming exam. 

5. Explore the nearest big city

Spend a day in the closest big city! Head there in the morning and grab brunch, then go to a museum, take a scenic walk or hike, or check out any other cool tourist attractions. 

6. Attend office hours for every professor

Attending office hours for every professor will make a huge difference academically at college and could even help you career-wise down the line. Even if you don’t have any questions or are confident, you can ace the class, going to office hours and getting to know your professor is still very beneficial. 

7. Participate in a large lecture

Raise your hand and speak up in one of your lecture classes. It can be very scary to ask or answer a question in a class full of tens or even hundreds of your peers. However, this is a way to stand out in class and show the professor how interested you are in the material. 

8. Find one professor that can be a mentor to you 

Finding a professor who can mentor you will help you academically and in your career. To do this, figure out which professors’ classes you enjoy. Then, go to their office hours, do extra credit anytime it is offered, participate in class, and attend any outside study sessions they hold. During office hours, be sure to make an effort to get to know the professor and learn more about their field.

9. Go to the freshman events planned

Many of the events on campus are for freshmen only ⁠— the whole idea of these events is to help freshmen make friends. Sometimes freshmen think these events are “lame,” but in reality, they are the ideal place to strike up a conversation with other students. 

10. Go on a road trip with friends

Is there a town a few hours away from your college that you have wanted to visit? Gather a couple of friends and plan a weekend road trip to this place! You can leave Friday after everyone finishes their classes and head back to campus Sunday night. Make sure to pack snacks!

11. Befriend upperclassmen

Get to know and befriend upperclassmen. Older students can often give useful advice and help you through challenging courses they may have taken in the past. 

12. Work out in the campus fitness center 

Many students don’t take advantage of all of the facilities college campuses have to offer. Check out the fitness center for a workout ⁠— most will have a pool too! There are often free workout classes offered through the fitness center; some can even be taken for course credit.

You are only a freshman once — make the most of your time on campus and living in the dorms. College is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so enjoy it. Go to events, socialize, and have fun! 

More Great Reading:

Letter to My Freshman Self: Nine Regrets I Have From College

About Madeleine Korn

Madeleine Korn is a recent graduate from the University of California, Santa Barbara. After graduating, she worked in marketing for a cybersecurity company for a year and a half. For the past year, she has been traveling the world while volunteering in hostels. Starting this fall, she will be teaching English in Spain. To learn more, here are her social media accounts: TikTok and Instagram. She loves writing and creating videos and really enjoys working for Grown and Flown!

Read more posts by Madeleine

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