With the semester coming to a close, the time has come for “new students” to shed that title. It may feel like only yesterday that they were asking where the Lyceum was or figuring out which collegian to join, but it’s already been nearly three months since then.
In that time, freshmen have experienced what most upperclassmen already have—learning to balance a personal life and college responsibilities, all in a new setting.
For Gracie Vick (Fr., SC), a homeschool student, the college format took some getting used to initially. “Because I was homeschooled for a few years, it took some time to adjust to understanding lectures and creating good study habits,” she said. “This is something I’m still working on, but I have definitely made a lot of progress and am noticing a significant and positive change in my test and quiz scores.”
The social life of a college student can be influenced by the people they meet in those first classes and job routines. “I met my best friend, Bethany, [working] at Abeka. The Lord put the whole thing together. I wasn’t looking for a friend, and when asked to do a Bible study, I didn’t know we’d develop such a great friendship!” said Xavier Kelley (Fr., NC).
Sometimes it’s hard to retrace where and when a pair of friends initially met, but what used to be groups of strangers are now great friends, some of which will last a lifetime. “I have met so many awesome people this semester,” said Gracie. “My two closest friends, I met through a mutual friend at dinner one night.”
Much of the learning at college happens during classes, but experiences can also leave an impression. “The first thing I would recommend is to always carry an umbrella,” said Kelsey Thompson (Fr., FL). “If you don’t have your umbrella, I guarantee that it will rain that day. Also, don’t procrastinate on projects, or else you will end up pulling an all-nighter.”
“Come with an open mind,” said Gracie. “Make friends, study hard, and don’t neglect your alone time with God. College can be hard and changes will occur, but God is constant and never changing.”
Like their peers, these students are evidence of the growth and change that occurs at college. Sharing advice to future “new students,” Xavier said, “Remember and remain who you are. Remember why you’re here, but make as many memories with good friends. All in all, find your ministry here and serve the Lord in all you do!”