8 Things I Wish I Knew Before College

Student Health is Worth the Visit

You’ll probably end up having to wait for two hours, but honestly, it’s totally worth it. They have free condoms, discounted Plan B, and most schools put a lot of effort into making sure mental health resources are top tier. Aside from it being difficult to get appointments or having to wait in line, there’s really no downside to stopping in once a semester to take advantage of the freebies.

The Add/Drop Period is Your Best Friend

I’ve now gone through seven add/drop periods, and I’ve never taken advantage of a single one, which is probably one of the biggest Ls I’ve taken in college. If you get into a class and you realize it’s going to be brutal all semester, just drop it. You’ll always be able to find something that fits it that’s either more interesting or at least way easier.

Free Food

Once you get off of a meal plan, most schools have some kind of “emergency meal plan” that barely anyone knows about. It’s free, and you can usually get some free swipes into the dining hall that make it easy to not spend money when you don’t have time to cook. All you have to do is find it and say that you’re a broke college kid, which – let’s be honest – is true for most of us.

Your Parents Have Way More Power Than You Think

Colleges typically shoot down big asks from students because, well, they can, but if you get your parents on the horn to say, “We’re giving you a shit ton of money, you better do this,” it usually plays out way differently than if you had tried to take it on yourself. Sure, we’re supposed to be in the time of our lives that our parents don’t have to fight our battles, but if you want to get something done, an angry mom on the phone is going to be way more productive than an email you send.

You Can Get Paid to Do Easy Things

Psychology departments at colleges are always doing research, and if you have a half hour to kill on a Saturday, you can usually find an experiment to participate in that will pay you for doing almost nothing. If you find the right one, you can usually get some kind of freebie out of it (like if it’s a food experiment), while still getting beer money for the weekend.

Going to Office Hours

Most of the time, a professor will sit for an hour doing grading during their office hours, never seeing the faces of any of his students. If you just show up once or twice a semester, it makes it seem like you care a little bit more than the other students (when you and I both know you don’t), and it’s an easy way to get some bonus points in the participation grade that’s usually weighted way too high in the grading for that class.

No One Knows What They’re Doing

As much as it might seem like some people have every aspect of their college career planned out in perfection, we’re all just raw-dogging these four years. You’ll typically end up better off if you don’t plan super far ahead and try to take advantage of whatever comes your way.

Student Discounts are Everywhere

They will never be publicized, but if you’re ever trying to get a subscription to something or go somewhere, you should look into what having your student ID with you can do. Typically, you’ll pay a fuck of a lot less than if you don’t have it.

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Written by TFM

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