3 Tips for Incoming College Students
By Matt Wujciak
You are what you like
Attention class of 2018. Whether you are dying to start fresh with the next stage of your life, or you simply want to preserve a reputation that you built over the past 4 years, you are going to be presented with a plethora of opportunities to re-market yourself to a new network of peers.
As you enter college, your digital voice is about to exponentially grow. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, that new LinkedIn account that your parents told you to make, your school’s social education platform, you name it.
Regardless of the media outlet, be cautious of what content you are associating yourself with. Leave the childish or inappropriate retweets and likes in high school. Scratch that, don’t leave them there. Delete them.
You never know when they could be used against you. Conversely, liking, creating, or sharing inspirational and informative content that you want to be associated with is a great way of letting old friends know what you are up to, as well as marketing yourself to new ones.
Creativity is your new currency
As generation Z is growing up with far more technology and purchasing power than any other previous generation, more and more educational institutions are incorporating free-flowing and team-oriented creativity into their curriculums.
For example, take a glance at Bryant University, a small school in Smithfield, Rhode Island. Here at Bryant, each freshman, regardless of their intended major, endures a 3-day intensive program (16 hours each day) that attempts to maximize potential customers of a local business by improving their business plan and creating a prototype to be pitched to alumni.
Whether you like it or not, the design thinking process will most likely be part of your curriculum, and probably even more so, part of your career path. Use it to your advantage and start learning about the concept of innovation.
Many students compete against each other for the best grades and achievements while having many of the same skills. However, what students are failing to realize is that their ideas and creativity are the X factors to the tipping point of their success.
Thank you notes, networking emails, chatting with with professors after an interesting class… Anything you could think of to be present in the moment that you are in by communicating and learning from the people that you want to know a little bit better.
Although preparing for your future is imperative to educational and professional success, do not take your current opportunities for granted by failing to be attentive and present each day, each class, each moment.
The late Brian Fleury, former athletic director and mentor at Delbarton School, one of America’s most prestigious high schools in academics and in athletics once said, “Attitude. This is what I want to end with…please pay attention to how you approach each and every day of your life. Make the decision – and it is an individual, conscious decision – to be positive about the day ahead of you.
Like I talk to you about all the time, be present, be where you are, care about what you claim to care about, love the things you claim to love…”