As another semester is coming to a close, I have found myself reflecting on some of the essential things you need to do in order to be successful in college. Along with this, I have also thought about what can seriously derail you from having a smooth and prosperous semester. I have learned a lot on my journey through college and have made mistakes that taught me some important lessons along the way. With that, here is a short list I comprised which can hopefully help you too!

Do: Eat breakfast before going to class. It’s pretty embarrassing if your growling stomach echoes throughout the classroom and eating can really help improve your focus.

Don’t: Drink coffee before going to bed. It will disrupt your sleep and you will be miserable the next day (trust me on that).

Do: Try and find time to hit the gym. The freshman 15 is very real, and also very preventable! You’ll feel more self-accomplished after going to the gym as well, so it’s pretty much a win-win.

Don’t: Put off meeting with your group until the day before your project is due. Group projects are a very big thing in IST, and the earlier everyone can establish what they want to work on and put in their opinions the better! I know you don’t want to be sitting in a library study room for 5 hours trying to complete the project you have due at 8 AM tomorrow. It never ends up being fun.

Do: Start studying a few days before your exams. It really helps relieve some of that test anxiety if you know you’ve prepared well in advance, and you’ll most likely end up doing much better. And if you don’t understand the topic in class, go to office hours! Every professor I’ve ever talked to has been eager to help me learn, and the closer a relationship you can establish with your professor the better.

Don’t: Find excuses not to join clubs. CCBC has some pretty amazing and fun organizations, and you’ll have the opportunity to meet some people that have the same interests as you!

And so with that, the incoming freshman, I hope that you’ll be able to incorporate some of the wise words into your college careers to hopefully help you. Good luck!