Advice For Every College Freshman: Get Involved

Avoiding the “Freshman 15’’ and forming good study habits are two often discussed college freshman issues.

Recently, I have realized that when I was a freshman I was never told the importance of getting involved early on. As a freshman I used the excuse that I needed to get acclimated to campus before making any strong commitments to organizations.

Even though that is an important step as a freshman, you should not use it as an excuse to be lazy. Looking back, I see many opportunities I could have partaken in that might have gotten me a step further than where I am today.

Do I have regrets? Not exactly. However, if I can share my experience and have other freshmen learn from them, than I am more than happy to help a fellow student out.

Now that I am a junior, I am extremely involved on and off campus. I work at my student newspaper, I am active in 3 organizations, I write for the smart and helpful blog, TheCollegeHelper.com and I am taking on a summer internship.

Looking back, I have realized that I could have utilized my time better by getting experience in my field of study early on. Though I was involved in one organization, the extra time I had as a freshman could have allowed for me to be a little more involved which would have allowed for me to have more free time as an upperclassman. Therefore, I would not be as stressed as I am today.

When I thought of students who are prime examples of making the most of their time, I thought of my friend and colleague, Adam London.  Adam, a junior at Central Michigan University has been heavily involved on campus since his freshman year.

As the vice president of human recourse in Pi Sigma Epsilon and the recently promoted advertising manager of CM-Life, Adam is a role model that any student can look up to.

After a brief interview, Adam gave words of advice that were not only valuable, but also showed that with hard work and determination, students can have a better chance of landing a job after graduation.

Here are some of his experiences as a student that led him to his success today:

Q: What benefits have you experience being involved as an underclassman?

A: “The knowledge I gained by being involved when I was a freshman, most students don’t learn until they are juniors or seniors. When I give a recruiter my resume, I know that I stand out because of my experience and my involvements from freshman year until now. After hearing countless recruiters speak about what they look for in a new hire, the number one thing is always how early did you get involved.”

Q: How involved were you during your freshman year?

A: “During my freshman year I was on the rugby team, a part of the American Marketing Association (AMA) and Pi Sigma Epsilon (PSE), a sales fraternity. During my freshman year I got on the e-board for both AMA and PSE.”

Q: How has being involved early on helped you with starting your career as a professional and taking on leadership roles?

A: “In the summer of my freshman year I received an internship directly related to my field of study. This was because I was so involved early on.

In terms of how it has helped me start a professional career, as a junior I have five companies who want to hire me and have scheduled interviews in the summer for full time jobs. These interviews were scheduled during the fall of my junior year.

In terms of taking on leadership roles within the organization, being involved early allows you to learn how the organization is run. This knowledge will allow you to be better prepared for the leadership role you may take on in the future.”

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Rachel Talaska

Rachel Talaska

Rachel Talaska is a junior at Central Michigan University pursuing degrees in public relations, journalism and marketing. Besides being in class, Rachel can be found working at the campus newspaper, Central Michigan Life in the advertising department or watching re-runs of "Friends." She hopes to one day move to a big city and find her dream job. Rachel enjoys fashion, eating healthy (with the occasional bowl of ice cream), fitness, reading, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.
Rachel Talaska

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