POV: You started online classes when you were in senior high school, but in a blink of an eye, you’re in college now. (Alexa, play “Night Changes” by One Direction.)
After grasping the perils of remote learning due to the pandemic for two straight years, students can now finally feel the true atmosphere of a classroom setting—running through the campus because you’re late, meeting up for group works you don’t wanna do, hangouts after class, and the stress and thrills of org life.
Even if we have different timelines and dispositions, university life remains a universal experience because it’s the time to freely explore new friendships and experiences—all within the tight schedule of semester after semester. Hard times happen, but that doesn’t mean that college won’t be memorable.
Sitting beside you on your first day of class, we thought that you might need a handful of (unsolicited) college pointers from us. Make sure to take note of these tips from the Scout team as you walk through the beginning of your college era.
- Sleep is non-negotiable. We like talking about pulling all-nighters, but honestly, finding an effective study habit for yourself is better than succumbing to the pressure of being a zombie like everyone else. Your future self—whether a month or five years from now—won’t like the consequences (i.e. hospitalization).
- Pursue a little act of bravery every now and then. Sign up for that org, even if you’re unsure of your skills. Raise your hand, even if you feel like you’re the least intelligent person in the room. Befriend that acquaintance, even if you’re taking entirely different courses. Be present, continue conversations, confess your feelings. Even if you fail, the adrenaline will feel like fulfillment in itself. As Rainer Maria Rilke says, “Let everything happen to you. Beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.”
- We usually just go through them passively, but try to enjoy your non-major subjects—you’ll unearth new ideas and perspectives from them. I, for one, didn’t know I’d be into archaeology until I was forced to take that class.
– Jelou Galang, a.k.a. Jelou (Class of 2018)
Associate Editor & Brand Engagement Lead
- Your mental health matters more than acads and org work. Period.
- I know failing sucks, but really, it’s going to be okay! What matters is what you make of your mistakes.
- To get good grades (or on your prof’s good side), showing up and asking questions is key. Make the most of your profs’ expertise by talking to them.
- Sticking to one org you’re interested in will let you grow more than trying to fill your resume with 10 different ones. A group where you can be yourself and that has common goals with you are green flags.
- Meet people and make memories! Not everyone has to be your bestie, but school is more fun when you’re friends with your classmates. Your college friends are likely your friends for life.
– Niña Guno, a.k.a. Ninsy (Class of 2015)
- Talking to yourself while studying helps a lot. Not gonna lie, it feels weird at first—asking and answering Qs by yourself—but trust me, it’s revolutionary. Having a convo with yourself keeps the brain from wandering off, allowing you to absorb info more easily.
- Find your go-to study place. It doesn’t matter if it’s a local library, a 24/7 coffee shop, or even your own room, as long as it’s a place where you can concentrate and feel productive. (TMI: When I was in college, my fave cafe’s barista saw my face more than my parents ever did. And yup, they witnessed my embarrassing breakdowns, too.)
- As much as this sounds cliché, cut yourself some slack. One thing I learned in university was to never force yourself into accomplishing tasks, especially when you’re already drained as hell. It’s fine to take breaks. Hit a karaoke pub with friends, get a massage, or sleep in—whatever makes you feel good. (Don’t neglect your deadlines, though, okay?)
– Kleo Catienza, a.k.a. Kle (Class of 2019)
Junior Content Creator
- Make the most out of your college/university subscriptions and student discount perks. I swear, premium software required in your class are so expensive without them.
- Don’t go to class empty-handed. Read news daily (from verified news media, of course), scan your modules, and bring your course essentials: dictionary, calculator, T-square, lab gown, etc.
- After experiencing both face-to-face and online learning setups, the COVID-19 pandemic sucked TF out of all my energy and brain cells. Don’t be shy to ask your blockmates or professors about the details of your tasks, deadlines, and other school-related stuff.
- Gaining experience from college and outside organizations is important. They serve as a training ground for your career. You’ll learn a lot from them.
– Justine Rey, a.k.a. Tatine (Class of 2022)
Junior Content Creator
- All-nighters can work, but waking up very early to review or finish up on your tasks may be better.
- Use different colored highlighters or pens to mark your notes/books so you can easily scan and remember them. In my case, I used yellow highlighters for names, blue for important dates, and green for other important details.
- Keep a record of your test scores so you can get an overview of your overall grades even before the final grades are up. Don’t be afraid to ask your professors if you have questions about your grades or how you can improve them.
– Yel Sayo, a.k.a. Yelzus (Class of 2019)
- *Maybe* don’t fall in love with your blockmates or thesis partner if you want to live your college life peacefully.
- Know the “quiet place” in your school so you can do it (you know) at peace when mother nature calls you.
- Find good friends who will accompany you through ups and downs. Surround yourself with people who have plans in their life.
– Mikey Yabut, a.k.a. Mikey – (Class of 2019)
Don’t fret, freshies. You got this.
Art by Yel Sayo