Freshman years coming to an e.n.d.

<p>So for all of you soon to be UT Sophomores, how was your freshman year? What things stood out the most? How did you adjust to becoming a number, in some cases?</p>

<p>"Freshman year coming to an e.n.d."</p>

<p>I absolutely enjoyed my freshman year. It went by so quickly!
To all incoming freshman, one piece of advice is to get involved! UT's organizations offer free things multiple times a week. I was rarely bored. If I was, it was my own fault for being lazy. We receive weekly informational e-mails which are quite long, but feature most of the events on campus. Read through these e-mails! They also state the cost (SO many free events), location, description, and website. So you can find a lot of things from these e-mails! The kiosks around campus also feature many events. So take a minute and scan through the brochures and posters. People hand out flyers for events. Instead of avoiding eye-contact, take one! You'll see what I mean when you get to UT.
Don't be afraid when you first get on campus. The only time I got home-sick was the hour after my parents left. After unpacking some of my stuff, we had a wing meeting (I lived in Jester). I met some people, and distracted myself from the reality of living by myself.
If you're in McCombs, go to the McCombs Kickoff! I met many other business freshmen and it was SO much fun. Also, join a FIG. You won't become friends with all of your FIG, but there will be a few people that you'll get close with. It's really convenient to have study buddies.
I'm really glad I got involved in organizations. I joined a couple that I was really interested in (instead of many that I was unsure about). The student events center is great for organizations. They are free(!) and varied. I am in the Music and Entertainment Committee. There are many chances for leadership positions and the members are really friendly!
A tough part of fall semester was trying to figure out how to study. It's a lot different from high school, and you have to delegate many hours to each course. Get your work done BEFORE going out because you'll end up pushing it back and the work will pile up.
When you have free time, explore Austin! The city has so much to offer (especially food-wise). I spent most of my money on restaurants around Austin. Also, go to ACL and SXSW. Looking back, these two events stand out the most amongst my favorite during the year. If you don't have the money to spare, look into volunteering.
Get people's phone numbers! You'll meet hundreds of people during the first few days (if you put yourself out there), so make sure to keep in contact with them. Most of them will be acquaintances, some you may never again correspond with, but many may actually become good friends with you! I met most of my friends randomly (not through classes), and through other friends/acquaintances. Honestly, you probably won't become friends with your hall mates. I rarely saw mine (mainly because I was out of the room so much).
Don't spend more time in your room than necessary. Even when studying, get out! I met many people at the learning center and in the library. There are 17 libraries on campus, so don't just go to the PCL. I really enjoyed studying at the fine arts library on the weekends. Don't be surprised when you have to study on a saturday! You will have to sacrifice some weekends to studying.
Don't buy a planner before school. I wasted money doing this. I had at least 4 free planners thrown at me during the first week of school! Make sure you write everything down because you'll probably forget it if you don't!
I can't think of anything else. Oh, one last thing: go to class! I didn't voluntarily skip a single class this semester. Skipping only causes hassles and confusion. Oh, and go to office hours. They are extremely helpful. I usually went to my T.A's hours instead of the professor's. Or I'd go to the T.A, THEN the professor. Before each exam, I'd write down any questions I had on the material and asked them at office hours. If the T.A didn't know the answer, I'd follow up with the professor.
Hope this helps!</p>

<p>samster, thanks for the great response! I'm going to forward it to my son. He'd already mentioned a planner, so I'll tell him not to bother. You have some great suggestions!</p>

<p>I agree! If I can't get my son to read this thread, I will read it OUT LOUD to him! lol</p>

<p>Thanks, samster. I just was telling my son about the post and he came in from the kitchen to read it.</p>

<p>You're welcome :) I like to help. And this advice would have been useful to me a year ago! If you have any specific questions, feel free to PM me</p>

<p>Thanks for the great post, samster! Hmmm. You got phone numbers. My D and her friends were more likely to friend people on facebook. Either one works!</p>

<p>Samster thank you for your insightful post! I'd like to know your thoughts on how early one should arrive if he wishes to sit in the front row of all of his classes?</p>

<p>Yes, facebook also works, but I ended up forgetting about them. I'm not a big facebooker (i'd rather text/call). It's just opinion.
And to get to class at a good time. On MWF, there's no point in getting there more than 10 minutes early because classes don't even get out till then. On TTH, it's 15 minutes. So the previous class has to empty before you get to go in. Don't get there 5 minutes prior to class and expect a good seat. Actually, you can get a seat up front if you get there late-ish; you'll just have to climb over people's legs because the seats are usually in the very middle- not the edges (if you're in an auditorium)</p>

<p>Good post.</p>

<p>Agreed with samster - you can usually find a set up front. There have been plenty of open seats in the very front rows, even after class began in almost all of my classes. I think most people are intimidated of being that close up. The only times I have seen virtually every seat taken is when its an exam/quiz day.</p>

<p>Thanks for the info guys. I'll def be one of those kids up in the front every time :)</p>

<p>I agree with Samster.
I felt that freshman year went too fast. Also adding to Samster's post:
There's no reason to be bored.
Go volunteer at events around campus and the city. Join some volunteering organizations- there are couple on campus. It's fun and you get to meet new people.
During first couple classes, say hi to the stranger sitting next to you. Always make some friends in every class. Ask for their phone number, add them on Facebook...
Sit in the front of the class if possible, especially those 100+ people classes. Attend lectures/TA sessions. Go to office hours! But only go when you have questions or something. Don't go just because you want to introduce yourself... You can introduce yourself when you go for questions.
Go to the gym. They have great swimming pools!!!
Don't worry about not having enough shirts or water bottles because you will get a ton of free t-shirts and bottles if you try to get involved.</p>

<p>bump.
others may have something more to contribute!</p>

<p>Definitely facebook a person if you get their name .... thats how I got the ladies last year ;-)</p>

<p>I agree with everything samster said.</p>

<p>Also, go to the gym a lot. Don't put on the freshman 15, unless it's in muscle! (That's what I did, really.)</p>

<p>Also definitely go to the McCombs Kickoff if you are a business student! Me and a ton of people I know are some of the sophomore team leaders, and it's going to be a blast!</p>

<p>Yeah I've been thinking how anybody going to UT could even get the freshman 15. When I was at orientation, we did a helluvalot of walking. I wonder what it's going to be like when I start in about two weeks.</p>

<p>Yeah i didnt gain weight because of all the walking and slope climbing I had to do to get to class. I barely took the 40 acres too..</p>

<p>What majors are you guys? How was your experience within your major?</p>

<p>Management Information Systems - Business. It was insanely easy, got straight A's, never studied, very little reading, insane amounts of free time. hope this year is the same as the last.</p>