Be aware of your surroundings.
Know your school inside and out. Look at their website, and read their calendar and any available newsletters. Learn your way around, gain access to the school directory for easy access to various contacts. Make sure you are set up with a student email, that you are on the roster for each class, and that you know where to go if you have a problem with your financial aid, meal plans, etc. Learn about safety measures taken to protect you on campus and where to go if you are in danger or have an emergency. Find out if you need a card to get into buildings and when you need to buy your books, return them, or register for graduation. Find out when and where to sign up for clubs or what kind of perks you can get with your student ID, if they have discounts for public transportation, museums, sporting events, etc.
Once you are enrolled in a school, you become a part of it. So, make sure you are a part of it.
Go to classes prepared.
Starting on your first day of class, come prepared. Have the right supplies and books with you. Engage in the lectures, and ask questions. Complete your assignments on time. Be ready for quizzes and tests. Read ahead in the syllabus so that you have knowledge of what’s to come. All of this will aid in a good grade and is a practical use of your time.
Become familiar with your professors.
Being a teacher’s pet in college is absolutely necessary, especially in a big school with large class sizes. Get to know your teacher by asking questions during class and by visiting him or her during office hours. The more the professor is familiar with you, the easier it will be for him or her to help you when you get stuck or mentor you in your chosen field of study.
Be responsible when socializing.
There are too many distractions in the life of a college student. Things like part-time (or even in some cases full-time) jobs, family, friends, and the social life will all want your attention. Before you know it, you’re drained and unable to focus on the very reason why you enrolled in college to begin with. Learn to prioritize and attend parties and other social events in moderation. There is nothing wrong with having fun, but always remember that your education is the main reason that you are in college.
Continue learning year round.
Summer is a tempting time to forget about school altogether, but year long learning will be to your benefit. Take on a summer internship or job relating to your field of study. Take summer school if you have fallen behind on your course load. Read books on topics that interest you. Research opportunities and experiences that you can try that fit your budget. If you are in a creative field, such as art or writing, work on your craft to build a portfolio for potential employers. You will feel that you have made the most of your summer versus vegging out until it’s time to go back to class.