College orientation is a lot like your mom. They both give you free food. They are both preparing you for the next big step in your life.
And they’re both abandoning you this week.
Congratulations on your first week of Duke! To commemorate your first First Day Of Classes (affectionately known as FDOC), here are five key things to know.
1. Study groups! Start making them!
Make study groups in your important classes on day one. You will maximize your retention of the material, your time management skills and you will make some really cool friends. Go into that lecture on Monday and talk to anyone around you. Get a feel for your new homies and suggest meeting regularly for class. Making each person responsible to write concise notes on a different reading assignment, and compiling them later, will make studying for midterms and finals a dream!
2. Say ‘sup to the Prof!
Go introduce yourself to your professor, particularly if it’s a class of great interest to you. Before you leave the room, at least pop over, say hi, introduce yourself and let them know you’re excited for the semester. Class will be more enjoyable and you will have a great channel to ask for advice later on. On the flip side, they’ll be more likely to notice if you miss class! (Mom, if you’re reading this…that was a hypothetical note. I don’t miss class.)
3. C-2 bus stop moves!
So maybe I’m the village idiot. No, scratch that, I’m definitely the village idiot. I was super late to my first college class, with another crew of kids, because we did not know that the C-2 buses do not stop at the main East Campus bus stop with the C-1’s once classes start. There is a separate C-2 bus stop by the bridge you all painted during orientation week.
4. Find 30-minute pockets of time to work!
During the day, you might find yourself having little windows of time between classes. 30 minutes, maybe an hour. Those are secret gifts! Do your best to be one of those kids who keeps flashcards on his or her person to study on the go. On and off I try to be that person and when I’m not I HATE those people because they’re always on top of their game. If you take advantage of those little windows consistently, you’ll see major impacts to your productivity, I promise!
5. Call your mommies!
They are worried sick, they are anxious and they want to know things. They love you. Call them! Send them weird photos of your new friends. A photo of your FDOC outfit. Sneak a selfie in your lecture and send it to your mom. She put up with you for 18 years or more! It’s the least she deserves!
Be a star on Monday. Destroy your FDOC.
Rence Nemeh is a Trinity senior. His column runs every other Friday. This is his first column of the semester.