What's up everybody! My name is Jon Terry, and as a current college student myself, I would like to give you a few tips for your upcoming college years!

Check out the New Student Orientation website for some great information.

-When you find out who your roommate is contact them right away, whether it be through e-mail, Facebook, or by phone.
- Give your roommate a chance, even if you are not getting along right away.
Check out the Office of Residence Life on the UW-L website!
College Roommate Rules on the website.
-Remember that every other freshman out there is in the same place you are – they don’t know many people at UW-L – so get out there and introduce yourself to them!
Get to know your roommate and others in your residence hall. The people you live with, most of whom are going through similar experiences and emotions, are your main safety net -- not only this year, but for all your years. You may change roommates after the first semester or you may stay roommates for all four years -- just take the time to get to know your fellow first-year students.

Student Employment and Internships
-Check out this helpful brochure! UW-L Student Employment Brochure
-Check out Eagle Opportunities on the UW-L Career Services website for internships and job listings!
-There are job fairs and other UW-L career events at the beginning of every semester. Look for signs and watch your emails for more information.

Choosing a Major and Career Exploration
-Check out and click on the tab titled, “major and careers” under “find a college.” It’s a great resource!
-The Academic Advising Center has great resources such as the What-If reports on Wings to help you explore a major.
-The is a great resource for deciding majors and more.

Study Abroad
Find more info here!

Financial Aid
You can find information about Financial Aid at the UW-L Financial Aid website and the FAFSA website.

Get involved on campus. A big problem for a lot of new students is a combination of homesickness and a feeling of not quite belonging. A solution? Consider joining a select group of student organizations, clubs, sororities or fraternities, or sports teams, and be careful not to go overboard. You'll make new friends, learn new skills, and feel more connected to your school.  The Wisconsin Covenant Scholars group can be an amazing way to meet other Scholars, volunteer, get assistance when you need it, and learn how to be successful in college!

Keep track of your money. If you've never had to create a budget, now is the time to do so. Find ways to stretch your money - and as best you can, avoid all those credit card solicitations you'll soon be receiving. The average credit card debt of college grads is staggering.

Man holding money bag 

Find the ideal place for you to study. It may be your dorm room or a cozy corner of the library, but find a place that works best for you to get your work done -- while avoiding as many distractions as possible.

Go to class. Obvious, right? Maybe, but sleeping in and skipping that 7:45 a.m. class will be tempting at times. Avoid the temptation. Besides learning the material by attending classes, you'll also receive vital information from the professors about what to expect on tests, changes in due dates, etc.

Kids running to class

Become an expert on course requirements and due dates. Professors spend hours and hours preparing course syllabi and calendars so that you will know exactly what is expected of you -- and when. Don't expect any exceptions.

Meet with your professors.  I can assure you there are only benefits to getting to know your professors, especially if later in the semester you run into some snags. Professors schedule office hours for the sole purpose of meeting with students -- take advantage of that time.

Seek a balance. College life is a mixture of social and academic happenings. Don't tip the balance too far in either direction. Study hard to play hard.

Strive for good grades. Another obvious one, right? While good grades could have come naturally to you in high school, you will have to earn them in college -- and that means setting some goals for yourself and then making sure you work as hard as you can to achieve them.


Take advantage of the study resources on campus. Murphy Learning Center has tutors available for various subjects. If you're having some troubles, these resources are another tool available to you. Another idea: form study groups.

Don't procrastinate; prioritize your life. It may have been easy in high school to wait until the last minute to complete an assignment and still get a good grade, but that kind of stuff will not work for you in college. Give yourself deadlines -- and stick to them.

Stay healthy/Eat Right. A lot of problems first-year students face can be traced back to an illness that kept them away from classes for an extended period of time that led to a downward spiraling effect. Get enough sleep, take your vitamins, and eat right. If you haven't heard the jokes about college food, you soon will. And without someone there to serve you a balanced meal, you may be tempted to go for those extra fries or cookies. Stay healthy and avoid the dreaded extra "Freshman 15" pounds by sticking to a balanced diet.

Healthy Eating

Stay on campus as much as possible. Whether it's homesickness, a job, or a boyfriend/girlfriend from home, try not to leave campus too soon or too often. The more time you spend on getting to know the campus and your new friends, the more you'll feel at home at school. And why not take advantage of all the cultural and social events that happen on campus?

Don't cut corners. College is all about learning. If you procrastinate and cram, you may still do well on tests, but you'll learn very little. Even worse, don't cheat on term papers or tests.  Please read more about UW-L's student disciplinary procedures for academic misconduct.

*Tips are adapted from "Helpful College Tips." Lake Superior College. The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System. n.d. Web. 14 July. 2011.