I’m so glad you’ve decided to come to the best school ever! To help ease your transition, here are three tips I wish I knew before starting freshman year:
Bryant Dining Hall offers the best food on campus. Do yourself a favor, and eat there as often as possible.
Take advantage of free accounts! Amazon Prime gives a six-month free student trial (extra helpful for ordering any dorm stuff you forgot). The Pocket Points app gets you free food around Tuscaloosa. UA provides free Philo and HBO Go accounts, which have a lot of movies and TV shows.
There’s a lot of beauty in a well-timed nap; late nights paired with afternoon naps are a way of life at college.
My freshman year at college stretched me in a ton of new directions. I always thought change happened automatically at college, so I was surprised when I felt the same at first. College didn’t miraculously change me overnight. Instead, I had to intentionally set goals, surround myself with like-minded people, and examine my habits.
As I figured out my schedule for freshman year, one verse that helped me prioritize was
“Sow righteousness for yourselves, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the LORD until he comes and showers his righteousness on you.”
Sow righteousness. It’s important to take time to develop habits to cultivate spiritual growth. Last August, my life consisted of random decisions and poor planning, but when I began to prioritize daily prayer, I experienced a radical transformation and so much more joy. Try to devote a portion of every single day to seeking God and opening yourself to be transformed by the Holy Spirit.
Unfailing love. I went through some very selfish phases this year (let’s be real…I still struggle with this). In October, the Holy Spirit opened my eyes to how little I’d been loving others. It’s essential to be intentional about love. Learn the names of the ladies who swipe your ACT card at the dining halls so you can greet them every day. Text your friends when they’re about to take a test to let them know you’re thinking of them. Pray for other people as much as for yourself. Focusing on others is key to growing deeper in love.
Break unplowed ground. Be ready to experience totally new emotions and struggles in college. Embrace new ideas. College can be hard, but it’s so rewarding.
No amount of planning for college can secure the outcome of your time at UA, so it’s important to remember biblical truth. God showers goodness and mercy on us. Jesus is victorious over death. The Holy Spirit gives us power and comforts us. Keep these fundamental gospel promises in mind as you come to college, and you’ll start out on stable ground.
I can’t wait to meet you!