5 Key People College Freshmen Should Know

During your first few weeks on campus, something will likely go wrong…you will lock yourself out of your dorm room, get enrolled into the wrong class, have a fight with your roommate, or something similar.  This is not meant to scare you, but rather to help prepare you for the inevitable.  Now is the time to make some friends with people in “high places” that can help you deal with these random mishaps.

In this post, I’ll tell you the 5 key people that every college freshman should know:

#1 – Resident Advisor (RA): During orientation, you will meet your RA.  Your RA is typically an upperclassman at the college or university who will live in one of the dorms on your floor to help keep the students in check and deal with various dorm-related matters.  You should try to build a good relationship with your RA, so that you feel comfortable going to him or her for help if your toilet is clogged, the ceiling is leaking, or if you have an obnoxious roommate.  The RA is there to listen and help you resolve your issue.

#2 – Deans/Advisors: Navigating the course selection process and knowing what classes are necessary for each major is not easy.  Make sure you get to know your advisors; they can help you put together a four-year plan, tell you who in the college can help you meet your goals, and help you deal with all of the politics.

#3 – Secretaries: Secretaries know everybody and everything.  If you have any kind of problem or question, a secretary can probably give you the answer.  Secretaries can typically be found near the front of whichever office on campus you visit.

#4 – Maintenance Crew: Things break, toilets clog, light bulbs burn out, keys stop working, windows crack, etc. – it’s a good idea to know someone who can fix these issues.  Ask your RA for the contact information for the maintenance crew; you never know when you’ll get back to your dorm room one day and realize that you’ve locked yourself out and your roommate is no where to be found.

#5 – Reference Librarians: In college, you’ll have a lot of papers to write.  Completing writing assignments will be hard enough, but having to waste a lot of time looking through the library makes it even worse.  Seek out a reference librarian to help you with this project.  It will give you more time to write your paper and reference librarians actually enjoy helping students find information.

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Lauren Anderson is a certified school counselor who's passionate about helping students all over the world successfully transition from high school to college! After spending 6 years as a business professional, she obtained her Master’s degree in School Counseling and now spends her spare time helping students.

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