How was your child's first year at College?

<p>Hi All new college freshman parents!</p>

<p>Would love your feedback on how its been for them......now that they are back from college?</p>

<p>Please post which college they go to if you don't mind sharing - good and bad! </p>

<p>Thanks so much!!</p>

<p>DD2 attends Lewis and Clark and loves it. I was concerned when she went because she is/was shy and insular. She has changed a great deal - much more outgoing and more even tempered (maybe that's just due to age).</p>

<p>D is a freshman at Stanford. She absolutely is in love with Stanford. She has worked her butt off and learned so much, both personally and academically. She has had amazing successes and a few disappointments. The young woman that emerged from the high school student between junior and senior year is even more poised and confident. She positively glows. The dark circles under her eyes will fade in the summer sun at the lake. She say sleep is overrated. :)</p>

<p>First year went better than we ever could have hoped for. Our son is at Carnegie Mellon. He is happy, healthy, and excited with what he's doing. He says he has no doubts about his choice of school, and is getting better grades than he ever did in high school. My only complaint is that he brought back three large bags of dirty laundry!</p>

<p>D1 home from UPenn after freshman year and she had an incredible experience--loves it. At first was concerned because she was placed in her last choice for housing; turned out to be fabulous. Made lots of friends--great group of kids. Overall successful with a few challenges thrown in. Much of the grading in her classes is on a curve and, although she's fared pretty well, it's been tough on the ego at times.</p>

<p>Erin's Dad, D2 (junior) can't wait to visit Lewis and Clark this summer--she's heard great things and thinks it might be a fit. Glad to hear your D is having such a positive experience.</p>

<p>Each semester is progressively better, and she currently (rising junior) "loves it", but there were challenges, especially the very first semester.</p>

<p>Duke</p>

<p>DS attends UMich. Socially, the first 6 weeks were tough. So many of the kids in his dorm were from Mich (DS is out-of-state) and knew each other. Happily, by the end of his first semester that variable was no longer an issue. Since he's been home, he's been in constant contact with guys who are now his friends.</p>

<p>DS tried to take too much too soon. Went for a minor that he should have waited until sophomore year to attempt. My only rec for an incoming freshman is take as little as possible during the first semester. There are no awards for extra credit hours and no point in stressing out to the max. College is hard work, but also fun. Next year DS has a much more reasonable load. It was a tough lesson to learn.</p>

<p>Overall, though, he loves college and had a great time. Football games are a great place to bond with new friends! (Especially if your team is losing!)</p>

<p>D1, an NYU film student across the ocean from us, was happy from the beginning but she did have minor adjustment issues in the first semester that she slowly overcame as she got used to her new environment (and culture). By the end of this semester she was enormously happy with her world--so much that she sent me a message once saying how she couldn't imagine her life getting any more "awesome" than at that point. So yeah, her school and major are definitely the right fit for her. I just hope the rest goes this well.</p>

<p>Well, just to give a different spin to this thread, my daughter finished up her freshman year at University of South Carolina and will be transferring to Ithaca College in the fall.</p>

<p>I would say she had an okay year but didn't find her people.</p>

<p>We are in Massachusetts and I think a big Southern state school was not the best fit for her.</p>

<p>S2 had a terrible first sem. at a directonal southern big state u. Socially, he had a great time.
Academically, it was a disaster and was put on academic probation. He learned that skipping classes and missing assignments/tests=failure. We debated on letting him return.
He pleaded to go back so we let him.</p>

<p>The good news is that he turned it around second sem. Retook some classes and got back in academic good standing. He just finished his soph. year with a B- gpa which is wonderful considering his first sem. was below 1.0. </p>

<p>Moral of our story is not to give up if it starts out rocky. Sometimes the learning curve is much bigger than they think. He's really happy at his sch. and I'm glad we gave him the chance to redeem himself rather than yanking him out anad sending him to CC after the first bad sem.</p>

<p>DS has had a great year at Ohio State. Sounds like his social life is great and he has been academically challenged but not overwhelmed. From a parent's perspective, the experience has been great too.</p>

<p>My kids are way beyond the end of freshman year, so it's interesting to hear your stories.</p>

<p>A couple of points about what's ahead:</p>

<p>Some sophomores find that their social and residential experience in their second year is quite different -- and not necessarily in a good way -- from that of freshman year. This may be particularly true on campuses where all freshmen live together in the dorms but upperclassman are scattered among various mixed-year dorms, Greek houses, special-interest housing, and off-campus housing. Freshmen often find their friends among the people they live with, and then, when sophomore year starts, they discover that it takes an effort to maintain those friendships as people separate into different living situations, or to make new friends among upperclassmen, many of whom are not as interested in making new friends as they were as freshmen.</p>

<p>New issues will also arise in the second and subsequent years -- including definite decisions on majors, serious attempts to obtain summer internships, moving off-campus (for some students), decisions about whether or not to pursue study abroad or other off-campus options, questions about whether or not to pursue honors options, and finally, decisions about what comes next after the bachelor's degree -- which may lead either to massive efforts to secure admission and funding for graduate or professional school or similarly massive efforts to hunt for full-time jobs.</p>

<p>And meanwhile, just as all that is happening, some of them will find themselves involved in serious relationships with a significant other -- after all, they're approaching or past their 20th birthdays, and that's a time in life when lasting relationships may develop. Those who are lucky enough to find partners, though, must then face the complexity of reconciling (or choosing not to reconcile) their after-college plans with those of the other person -- something that, in my opinion, is a lot more difficult for their generation than it was for ours. What ever happened to couples in which the person who was less definite about what he or she wanted to do next simply followed the more focused person to wherever he/she was going and found a job there? And why is it that kids no longer seem willing to accept low-level jobs for a year or two in their college town so that they can stay with a partner who will be finishing a degree later than they will? These kinds of easygoing options don't seem to exist anymore for today's highly ambitious young people, and sometimes I think it's a shame.</p>

<p>They may seem "settled" into college now, but there are many important decision points yet to come. I thought you might appreciate some "previews of coming attractions."</p>

<p>He didn't end up dead or in prison.</p>

<p>Summer 2010: Full psychological workup so he can get accommodations in the future.
Fall 2010 and spring 2011: Community college.
Fall 2011: ????? Maybe return to original school, maybe not.</p>

<p>S went to UC Berkeley. Roomed with two friends from HS and they had a good time socially, and not bad academically. The interesting part will be next year, as they are moving off campus into their own apartment. Now that will be a test.</p>

<p>Marian - you are SO right. It's great to breathe a sigh of relief when 1st year has been successfully navigated, but there's more to come. I've noticed sophomore year is kind of a no man's land for students. Many run on adrenaline the first year - after all, you've been building towards this your whole life - 2nd year can be a let down in some ways and also a time when decisions (like choosing a major) are expected but the student may not feel (s)he has enough info to go on. Add the changes you pointed out (living arrangements, meal plans) and they can't always count on what worked 1st year. By junior year many find their focus. A couple schools have tried to address the sophomore year and its challenges, but it seems to me it's often ignored as a challenge.</p>

<p>My daughter finished her first year at Pitt about two weeks ago. She was very happy there and will be heading back next weekend to start a summer language program. Dorm life was an adjustment and she will have a single room next year. She also had a professor die the second semester, which was quite a shock for her, but she and her classmates muddled through. </p>

<p>She is happier than she has been in years.</p>

<p>Thank you for this thread.</p>

<p>Hoping to get some much needed advice as we prepare to enter freshman year at a big state OOS southern football school, majoring in engineering and part of a rigorous honors program.</p>

<p>Montegut - Hopefully your child is into football. If so, then your child will be fine. Make sure he/she has season tickets in the student section - friends will be made and good times had during the first semester. Southern football is, well, a unique experience that lasts a lifetime.</p>

<p>Freshman daughter couldn't be happier at UCLA. Had some hard moments with problems caused by a wild roommate and sleep issues but she dealt with them and has blossomed. She joined a sorority and will be living at the house next year, a scenario which I never could have imagined a year ago, and actually I think she will love it. She has made a ton of friends and never wants to come home (we live 45 minutes away) because she doesn't want to miss a thing. I guess the best testimony is that even though her HS friends are starting to come home, she is still happy to be at school and in no hurry to get back.</p>

<p>Our D is finishing her first year at SUNY Potsdam Crane school of music. She absolutely loved it. Has had a trying second semester with her roommate because first semestre she was alone and they put a young lady in who was having trouble on her floor. My D soon found why but handled it very well and is really looking forward to next year with a friend that will be her room mate. She is extremely excited to come home because her and her older sister are going to Croatia together for 10 days. She is also in a very serious relationship with a boy back here that we really like and they both handled the being away from each other great. Her biggest laugh of the year though was being seriously asked if we had things like hotdogs and hamburgers in Canada or what is K.D. To many of her new friends I think she was a novelty coming from Canada and now many of them want to come back her to visit next year and are going to get their passports over the summer. It is only a 2 hour drive and she has her own car so they are always welcome to come up. We will really give them a Canadian welcome and take them out for Beaver Tails (google that one--it is food). Overall a fantastic year for her and us. Thanks to everyone on CC for all the great stories and support.</p>