lysa-85“Welcome to the next best four years of your life: College.” I drove 21 hours to finally arrive at the “purple bubble,” one of the smallest, yet best liberal arts colleges in the nation. As I approached my dorm, Williams Hall, my mind was flooded with the reality at hand; I quickly began to question whether or not I had made the right choice.

However was we all know, you should never second guess yourself! First days began with an early program for first generation students (meaning that neither of our parents attended a four year college), where we were the only students allowed to arrive early on campus and move into our dorms. This was the best part, because move in was definitely not as chaotic as it was when everyone arrived two days later.

We were told that out of a class of 542 freshmen, first generation students comprised only 6{53c6eff5ce19621f7316832cfedf08caab022021f1679c62c3f44b8900ceaf72}! As one admission advisor put it, “we made it into Williams against the odds, with the wind against our chest and not our backs, but the admissions office makes no mistakes, and we deserve to be where we are.” That is something that has kept me motivated thus far in my studies.

It is so easy to feel out of place from time to time in a new setting or situation. College is scary at first. I was terrified for my first class, my first college essay, and my first exam. Yet life is always full of “firsts,” from start to finish. They are a necessity, and get you from where you are to where you’re going.

The orientation program at my college was my “first” glimpse at the life of a college student. This program acquainted me with the campus and even the surrounding area. You should always take advantages of programs that your school offers to get you acquainted with your surroundings and the resources offered to you (and yes, I know most of them seem boring, but you might be surprised).

I was able to participate in a trip called “Where Am I?” In this program, we traveled to the surrounding areas around Williams College, participating in farming activities (since Williamstown is predominantly rural), community service, and engaged ourselves in the surrounding communities.

Since college started, my closest friends have proven to be those people who I live and study with. It is important to build friendships with people quickly, otherwise you are apt to feel very alone quickly on a College campus, and this is not a good way to start the next four years of your life!

I’ve also learned that time management is clearly the only way to survive college! Write everything down: notes, meetings, appointments, even when you plan on eating dinner, you’d be surprised but it’s easy to forget so many things, when you’re juggling so much on your plate freshman year.

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