As we approach the first day of classes, we thought it would be fun to ask New College faculty, staff, students, and alumni to give one piece of advice to incoming freshman and transfer students. Make sure to take notes. Their advice could be exactly what you need to jump start your success at college.
Karla Murphy, Lecturer
Make it count.
And while advice like keeping and maintaining a schedule, asking questions of professors, getting involved in campus clubs and knowing where to locate textbooks on the cheap are popular as well as logical suggestions, the one piece of advice I would offer is little off the beaten path.
In short, whether the “it” refers to meeting your roommate, showing up for all of your classes, creating a study group, attending a football game, committing to service learning, going to the library. . . for something other than Starbucks, or doing any other thing on this campus, my advice is to make IT count.
Make each experience, assignment, and moment matter to you. By seeing and acting upon even the smallest events as meaningful, you will begin to create an environment that is creative, engaging, and significant – a setting where *real* learning can happen. Moreover, making it count sets the tone for not only how you manage and spend your time at ASU; it sets the tone for how you will live your life. So, start now. Make each and every day and decision matter. Make it count.
Bonnie Wentzel, Lecturer
My advice for incoming students is to utilize office hours. Office hours are time set
aside for students and their professors to meet. It can be one of the most valuable investments you can make in your education. It is a time when I get to talk to students one-on-one about questions they might have regarding class material, provide information about future classes, discuss lines of research, help them find campus resources, or sometimes it is simply an opportunity for me to share – “Hang in there, you’re not alone, you’ll be fine.” What students do not realize is that these small nuggets of interaction over a college career can actually expand their opportunities. It keeps the student, their name, and their abilities at the forefront of my mind when I’m identifying candidates for research, recognition, and other recommendations. When you multiply that by all of your professors, you can build a tremendous nest egg of support!
Chad Morgan, Director of Sun Devil Fitness Complex
Find your passion and get engaged. You get what you put into your college experience. It’s easy for some students to be successful academically, but not get much out of the rest of their college experience. We want students to get as much as they possibly can on all fronts. It’s important to have fun and find enjoyment in the little things you do. Someone once told me that we do things that are F-U-N-N, which means Functional Understanding Not Necessary. Do things that are fun and socially engaging. Having fun is an important piece of overall wellness for students. Make sure to have fun in whatever you do.
Paige Herbert, Student and New College Peer Mentor
If I had one piece of advice for an incoming ASU freshman, it would be to be a part of something greater than yourself. Reflecting on the past two years as an ASU student, I have made it a priority to make the most of the time I have in college. The saying “these are the best years of your life,” couldn’t be more accurate. College is truly what you make it, so don’t hesitate to think big and put yourself out there. Join programs, clubs, and events. I have made the most of my experience at the West campus through my outgoing nature and putting myself out there. As a result of my fearlessness, I have had many great opportunities including traveling Disneyland, marching in the Homecoming parade, standing on the sidelines of a football game, auditioning for the Spirit Squad, and taking photographs with Todd Graham, ASU head football coach. Remember to leave your mark and make the next four years unforgettable!
Alyssa Napuri, Student and Executive Director of the Residence Hall
Get involved! I don’t think I can push that one enough. Everyone comes into the
university with expectations of college. If there isn’t a club or organization on campus that speaks to what you’re interested in, all it takes is two friends and a staff member to create your own. Go to events, go to programs, go to those boring meetings that are actually strangely fun, and your whole life will transform into something you could never have imagined.
Karla Esquer, Student and PAB President
I would just like to remind everyone that it is okay to fail. I know it goes against
everything we have been taught, but trust me, failing a test, a course, or getting a ticket is not the end of the world. And honestly, the sooner that becomes acknowledged and accepted, the sooner one can truly develop into something amazing. Failure is a step in the learning process. It does not mean you are not good at what you do, or that you are a terrible student, or that your life is over. Thomas Edison said it best, “I have not failed. I have just found 1,000 ways that won’t work.” Remember that.