What College Students Wish Their Parents Had Taught Them
The school year is nearly upon us, and students are preparing to head back to university. For some students, this is their first time being off on their own. Others have learned from experience what it is like to balance classes, personal obligations, work, and a social life. Many students learn these lessons by trial and error, always leaving them, saying, “I wish my parents had taught me how to…” Fill in the blank for yourself. In a survey of 1,502 students, they all weighed in on what they felt unprepared for when they ventured off by themselves for the first time. Perhaps by learning what they did, you can have your family teach you the following lessons to prepare for the 2020/2021 school year.
How to control negative emotions or behavior
The stress of school aside, college students felt that they weren’t prepared to control negative feelings or behaviors. More specifically, they said that they found it “extremely challenging” to make new friends, handle their bills, be independent, and keep in touch with family and friends. Parents should recognize that they too frequently rescue their kids from the challenges all teens experience in school. However, it is necessary to let them handle some situations on their own. It’s them overcoming and working out these challenges that will prepare them for college and beyond.
There isn’t a smooth transition from high school student to college student. In high school, students are praised and awarded (greatly) for small accomplishments. Things change when you’re in college. When you fail, and you will, you’ll see how empowering it is to pick yourself up and work twice as hard to correct those mistakes. If a professor doesn’t like your thesis or idea for the next big app, take their criticism or suggestions, and make it better. Don’t expect to get monetary rewards for your accomplishment either. The class doing well on their midterms no longer yields a pizza party. Instead, your support system will be cheering you on from a distance. Learn to reward yourself with the reminder that this accomplishment puts you closer to reaching your end goal, a degree.
How to adapt to new environments
Whether you are going to school two towns over or in another part of the country, adapting to a new environment presents its own set of challenges. It becomes even more challenging when rooming with a stranger is at play. Know before you go! The most common roommate problems college freshman encounter include:
- Borrowing personal items without permission
- Eating the other person’s food
- Messy living habits
- Poor personal hygiene
- Lack of respect for each other’s personal space
- Unwillingness to compromise
- Immodest behavior
Parents should simulate these situations at home without warning. Do the one thing that you know would bother your kid that will likely happen within the first couple of weeks at school. Show ways of handling these issues from both sides; if you were the one causing the issues, and if you wanted to speak up about it.
If your college is like most colleges, first-year students have limited access to a car. Many parking permits are reserved for older students, leaving freshman to park their cars far away from their dorms. So that students don’t feel stranded on campus, college towns usually have a great public transportation system. Some may be accustomed to using buses and light rails, but for those who have never used public transportation, there is a little bit of a learning curve. Take a trip around town navigating yourself and your parents using apps and bus route information before heading off to school. If you live in an area where public transportation is limited, go to school early to familiarize yourself with the town and public transportation systems.
Managing a schedule
Most families have a system so that they are all able to work around one another’s schedules and still be able to all sit down at the table each evening. Knowing to stick to a schedule is much different than planning one yourself. As summer winds down, take these next few weeks to be in charge of the family’s schedule. This skill will keep you on track to getting to class on time, as well as manage your time efficiently. If you feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day, wait till you get to college and have to take care of more chores than before.
Properly managing a schedule helps with all these other common issues college students encounter. Get a well-rounded education on how to be a great college student with our Personal Productivity Course. By taking this course, you’ll learn time management skills, how to make sound decisions, and why multitasking can cause issues you never thought of before. Click the link to learn more today!