Preparing yourself for college

The transition from high school to college is a tremendous one. It requires getting in the right frame of mind and preparing yourself emotionally and mentally for the challenges ahead.

Whether you’re from Atlanta, elsewhere in Georgia, out of state or even another country, college poses more or less the same hurdles for everyone.

One of the exciting things of college is being independent. But independence comes with responsibilities; from academics and networking, to doing laundry and other chores to taking care of your nutrition and health, you must learn the balancing act quickly.

You’ve got to learn how to juggle many different responsibilities at once, and that’s a skill that is acquired with experience.

Time management is crucial and the sooner it is mastered, the better equipped you will be for the other challenges of adult life.

Tech is a diverse school. Students, professors and administrators come from varied social, cultural, economic and racial backgrounds. In a setting like this, it is extremely important to be accepting of others and their differing opinions, views and habits.

Instead of shunning the ‘alien,’ making an effort to understand a different perspective and trying to learn something from the multitude of cultures would help you take a huge stride towards being an aware adult in the world.

Tech is more diverse than many people admit or realize because they tend to cling to the personal groups in which they feel comfortable.

Diversity doesn’t necessarily mean that two people are from two different countries; it just means two people share two different views. Try to challenge your beliefs and opinions by being part of different social, professional and academic circles.

Another challenge of living independently is dealing with social and peer pressures. With temptations of all forms around, it’s a test of character to stick by one’s morals and principles. It is important to learn where and when to draw the line and how to say “no.”

Knowing well your goals and principles will ensure that making even the most difficult of choices will become easy.

Preparing for college is one thing, preparing for Tech another. As will be quickly apparent, there is a big focus on academics at Tech.

Efficiency and productivity are the metrics students are measured on. But a competitive and stressful environment like this can kill the creative soul in many of us.

Joining social organizations, taking dance or martial arts lessons, participating in intramural sports, volunteering around Tech, studying abroad, writing, exploring Atlanta and pursuing photography are few of the many things to explore aside from ones academics.

Not only do these activities keep the mind fresh, they will also involve meeting new people and opening up other exciting possibilities.

Getting ready for Tech also involves preparing oneself for Atlanta. One of the biggest mistakes students often make is that they tend to get stuck within the four walls of Tech. There is a lot to explore in and around Atlanta: food, arts, music, nature, culture, etc.

Crime and poverty are a reality in Atlanta and the best way to deal with them is by making smart decisions about the areas and times you traverse and being aware of your surroundings at all times.

There will be challenges and hurdles and there will be difficult choices, but with an open mind and the right attitude, it will be the time of most self-growth and liberation. At the end of the day, keep it simple and have a good time.


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