T Nation

College

Hey I love t-mag and read it every week. But aside from that I am headed to college in TN from FL tomorow so wish me luck any pointers would be appreciated

jd

JD, I work with college students for a living and think alot about this stuff. The first thing is, College is what you make of it. Are you going to do the bare minimum or are you going to go that extra step? I always talk about the educational experience versus book learning. My best lessons were not learned in class, especially since I’ve forgotten many of the lessons. Rather, my education was simply going through the college experience.

Always think about your future while in college. I’m applying for law school right now, and I really regret a couple of the C+'s I had because if those would have just been B’s or B-'s, my chances of getting into a couple of schools would dramatically increase. Go to school with the end in mind.

With that said, you need to remember that you will probably do something other than what you think you will now, and that is absolutely fine. Future graduate may not require you to even have a certain major. (I was music, now going to law). Find what you want to do and go for it.

Study abroad. No questions asked. Don’t worry about money, use loans. My four months in Milan, Italy was by far the most educational point in my life. The language is going, the knowledge is slipping, but the friends are still close. You will learn so much about yourself and your country.

I am also going to put a plug in for going Greek. Everything I did in college or since has been a direct result by a chance meeting and being recruited to Theta Chi. Now, we actually don’t have any groups in TN, so I can’t steer you there. Here’s some things to think about when looking at a fraternity. First, never, never, NEVER agree to be hazed. It’s bullshit and I hate it. If you are getting hazed, even slightly, drop out and find a group that won’t do it. There is not a positive group in the nation that hazes. Second, remember that all fraternities are based in a Ritual. These Rituals teach ideals, honor, integrity, service, leadership, dedication to alma mater, and other positive characteristics. When they get away from these, that’s when problems come in. Believe me, no where in our Ritual does it say we should have guys being sexist, homophobic, alcoholics, hazers, or anything else I often see. Are they living up to their Ritual? If yes, then you probably have a pretty good group.

JD, I wish you the best of luck. I wish I could give you more pointers, but this is long enough. If you have any other questions, let me know or post them back up. Kick some ass and give it hell until 2006.

What I found that worked for me was actually going to class. My grades correlate highly to how often I go to class. If you go to class, pay some attention, and turn in the homework (even half-assed), you’re going to get at least a C, if not a B in most classes. If you actually work, you’ll probably get a B or an A in most classes, reguardless of difficult people say the class is. Getting really good grades is about how hard you work. I’ve seen some not-too bright people do wonderful in college because they were good students. College is about more than grades, but you still have to take care of business, and attending class drops your study time dramatically. I’m a good case of what not to do. I came out of high school 8th in my class of 450 with a 1600 on the SAT. You’d think I’d be a shoe-in for good grades in college, especially at state school I went to. No way. I got lazy, stopped going to class (I’d take, say, November off). I left after 2 years with a 2.7. I took a year off, switched schools (moved home) and my first semester back? A 3.89, and not a 4.0 because my parnter in statistics didn’t show up the day the last part of our project was due. I went to class and my grades took care of themselves. And I know for every study or survey, there are a million people that think it is worthless, but the “Millionaire Next Door” and its followup were kind of interesting. The average GPA of self-made millionaires in college was like a 2.8. And, if I remember correctly, that also includes the doctor and lawyer crowd, which would obviously raise the average. So these people learned other things during college, such as how to deal with people and/or win them over.

As for the women, this is going to be one of the best times in your life. Know that if you tie yourself down to one, you’ll be missing out on all the others. (That is regret talking.)

As for working out, this is one of the best times for “instinctual” training, since your schedule is most likely going to be screwy. If your schedule is not too screwy, you could also structure your diet and workout quite well, as while you’re in college, you’re in control of so many things. (i.e. No real obligations.)

Just make sure you have fun. It’s going to be a blast.

I’m new to the college scene as well so I don’t have any pointers, just a question. Where are you going to school at in TN? I’m starting at University of Memphis in the spring.

Go to class. That’s where I fucked up my first semester. Do your work and you’ll be cool. Besides that drink lots of beer and fuck every girl that comes your way! Good Luck!