The 8 Commandments to be Successful in College

The 8 Commandments to be Successful in College

In university, you will face many obstacles and sleepless nights (trust me), but the experience as a whole is quite enjoyable if you are proficient in your studies. As you may guess, many elements make up the criteria for being a successful college student, and I am here to my eight commandments to be a successful college student.

1. Thou shall go to class- I cannot stress enough how important it is to attend class. You may think that, well, of course, I will be able to go to class but believe me when I say that it may be a struggle to do so at times. It is up to you; no one is holding your hand in college, and your professors will not pacify you for the absences. Either you will be marked absent and given a penalty for such, or they’ll simply mark you absent and move forward with the material. Either way, professors will still teach the class with or without you; you will miss out on the class YOU paid for. Moreover, each lecture is integral. The ones that you think may not be important can and will always turn out to be so. Additionally, it is always good to establish rapport with classmates, and attending class is the best way to do so.

2. Thou shall do homework and assignments- This may be a given, but trust me, it will also be tempting not to do such. As aforementioned, you are an adult in college. No one is here to pamper you. It is up to you to do your homework; it is not only your choice but simultaneously your obligation to do so, which brings me to the point that you need to read your syllabus. Your syllabus provides you with the framework of what is needed in each class and breaks down the grading categories. Every class I took in college had homework and assignments as fundamental grading sections. If you’re not good at testing, homework and assignments will be your saving grace. If you can show proficiency in both, then professors are sure to work with you and help you work through any issues you may have passing a course. Even more, if they do not help you, which is highly unlikely, then homework and assignments provide you with a significant cushion that will surely benefit you in passing.

3. Thou shall communicate with professors- Simply put, your professors are here to assist you. They love to have students who willingly communicate with them. If you are as lucky as me, as I have had some phenomenal professors here throughout my academic career at Georgia Southern, I would even go as far as to say that the professors are the best resource you will have as a student. Even more, Georgia Southern is home to some of the best professors in the country (IMO). You will be learning from quite literally the best of the best; take advantage of that. It will be invaluable in the long run. They love to have students come in during their office hours, and you may even get insight into the class that others don’t have. If you are struggling in a class or have any issues affecting your ability to do coursework, I implore you to utilize your professors. They will help and usually will go the extra mile to assist you in any way possible. Altogether I can assert that the professors here have been one of the most significant factors in my success as a student, if not the most.

4. Thou shall remember to surround self with like-minded individuals- Whether you know it or not, your friend group and circle will play an intrinsic role in your success as a student. If you are surrounded by individuals who would like to party, skip class and hang around the dining hall all day, then you will follow the same pattern. Rather you consider yourself to be a follower or not. The people you associate with can truly determine who you turn out to be as a student. I suggest you choose wisely who you decide to hang around because it is quite unavoidable to complete college without enrolling in a friend group or two. That’s why it’s important to make that right choice early into your colligate career. Therefore, there won’t be any stress of having to cut off friends later or being socially outcasted, which could lead to even more stress.

5. Thou shalt not procrastinate- I am not much of a procrastinator; I like to do things as soon as possible to avoid worrying about them later. But I have seen many struggle with procrastination, leading to a higher workload in the long run and a hard time as a whole. The quicker you do things, the better off you’ll be because college schedules can be conflicting. For instance, you may have three projects due in the same week, but you probably haven’t completed homework or earlier assignments. This is a terrible predicament to be in and can knock you off your pivot. As I continue to mention, no one will not baby you in college. Sure, professors will give you reminders about assignments, but ultimately it is up to you to do your work promptly and not allow yourself to fall victim to procrastination

6. Thou shall build a consistent and comfortable routine- Coming into the college, you should already have your schedule; I recommend writing down your class schedule, and once you get your syllabus, note all your important due dates. However, suppose you are unorganized like me. In that case, the iPhone reminders app will be your best friend, in addition to the pulse app, which sends reminders about upcoming assignments and alerts you to updates in the grade book. Once you get acclimated and get into a workflow that works for you, you are sure to succeed. Building the foundation for that workflow will not be easy, though. Because, as I continuously mention, you are an adult now, it is up to you to develop the habits required for success. I also advise you to try to make up a healthy sleep schedule. And this is something that I still have not completely mastered and makes a huge difference in who you become as a student.

7. Thou shall study- As you may have guessed, studying is a requirement in college; for a person like me, who never had to study throughout elementary up until high school, I figured that I would not have to do so for college either. Little did I know that I was in for a rude awakening; studying will help you pass any course you are enrolled in. Furthermore, you can master any material. It is up to you to put in the effort to do such. In essence, developing healthy study habits will help you progress as a college student.

8. Thou shall remember to take care of mental health- College is stressful and comes with various responsibilities and commitments. Therefore, it is essential to take care of your mental health. I suggest you look into your outlets/escapes. This could be gaming, music, reading, or exercise, amongst many other things. If you feel overwhelmed, take a walk. Here on the Armstrong campus, we have the beautiful International Gardens and Sweetheart circle on Statesboro, which can serve as a break from the stressors of college. Additionally, I suggest booking an appointment with our terrific Counseling Center, and you can call 912-478-5541 (Statesboro) or 912-344-2529 (Armstrong/Liberty), which is open 24 hours a day seven days a week. You do not have to struggle with mental health to use the counseling center; it always helps to talk and get out your thoughts to an individual. If you decide to do so, I suggest booking an appointment early in the semester, as students will fill up the appointment slots fast.

All in all, as long as you have the right attitude and discipline, you will be successful in your endeavors as a college student. Along the way, you will gain much more insight into the formula that makes up success in college, but these eight commandments should give you a good head start and grasp what to expect and what to do in the semester. Don’t be nervous. You got this, you Eagle!