You Do Not Become a College Student Overnight

You've been accepted to WPI and you have a college ID card now. You are sitting in college classrooms taking college courses. But you do not automatically change overnight. The transition from high school to college takes time and you need to adjust in many ways in order to become a "real" college student.

You learn to be one. The freshman year is a transitional period during which you learn how to manage yourself, how to study, and how to deal with many problems that you did not have in high school.

The differences between studying in high school and college include:

  • You are totally on your own; you need to manage your personal life, studying, finances, and entertainment.
  • You are expected to be able to study on your own, manage your time, choose your courses, preview and review, prepare for tests, and find help when needed.
  • You are taking more courses. Professors cover more material. You are expected to learn more outside the classroom by reading your text and doing the homework.

You are expected to deal with many problems on your own, and be able to work with other people. Be prepared to learn not only the course material, but life skills as well. Then your transition to college will be smoother.

Be prepared to work hard. You don't have to learn this lesson the hard way, the way this student did last year:

"My personal academic difficulties stemmed from a lack of preparedness for a college/away-from-home-environment. When I first arrived at WPI, I had minimal work ethic, which meant I did practically no work outside the classroom, and I often chose more sleep over class attendance. This was due, I believe, to a personal lack of responsibility and my own inability to budget time."

If you take responsibility for attending class, doing the homework, and learning to budget your time, including time for sleeping, you should be fine.

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