Top 10 Freshmen Rookie Mistakes

The transition from high school to college can be filled with learn-as-you-go rules and unspoken norms. Get the inside scoop on some rookie mistakes we have all made as freshmen as told by a Truman State University senior student.

  1. Thinking the dining halls are all-you-can-eat.
    Turning back the hands of time to my freshman year, some saw the dining halls as an endless food supply. First the pizza, then pasta, then cereal, then ice cream — stop and think about your choices. Just because you can eat all you want, doesn’t mean you should. The freshman 15 is a real thing.

IMG_0488 (1)

  1. Taking notes on syllabus day.
    Teacher: “…don’t write that down.”
    Freshman: …don’t…write…that…do….; “Oh.”
    Regardless of what your high school teachers told you, everything they say isn’t important to write down. Sure, jot down side notes for future projects, but save yourself from carpal tunnel in the future.
  2. The Lanyard — need I say more?
    Oh the lanyard — the piece of cloth designed to ensure you don’t lose your student I.D.  In my opinion, student I.D. photos don’t capture a person’s best side, so let’s not wear it around our necks. It’s a dead giveaway you’re new to campus.
  1. Running between classes — because 10 minutes apparently isn’t long enough.
    Sure, 10 minutes doesn’t seem like a long time if you have a class on one end of the campus and you have to book it to the other side. But take it from all of the oldies, once you have mastered the trek from Barnett to Ophelia-Parrish, any distance is amateur. Don’t run — it’s not worth it. Most teachers understand if you’re let out of class late or have a long distance to walk.
  1. Wearing pajamas to class.
    Wearing pajamas to class doesn’t just make you look like a fool, it’s also disrespectful to your professors. Remember someday you’ll be asking them for letters of recommendation, so do your best to look presentable and for the your own benefit, leave the pajamas in your dorm room.
  1. Frantically navigating campus using your Truman Week folder.
    No matter how hard you stare or how many times you try to rotate the campus map on the back of your Truman Week folder, you won’t get to your class in Barnett any more quickly. Let’s be honest kids, familiarize yourself with campus and look like a pro on the first day of classes — the upperclassmen will never know.



  1. Talking too much…
    Or not talking at all. College was an intimidating experience when I was a freshman. Some can be worried about overstepping their boundaries or saying the wrong thing. Regardless, your professors want to know that you’re there, so speak up and let your colors shine. However, don’t be that freshman that never. Stops. Talking. We understand you’re eager and smart, but trust us, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to impress your professors throughout the semester.
  1. Spending too much money on books.
    Books are killer. They suck away your bank account in a flash. They’re heavy, clunky, boring and I think they could better serve as a doodle sketchbook. Kids, research for your textbooks because I know I have other things I would rather spend my money on.
  1. Carrying everything everywhere.
    As I have gotten older, I have realized I need fewer and fewer supplies to be successful in college. In fact, most seniors I know are lucky if they buy a folder their last year. Especially during syllabus week, the basics will work just dandy. There is no need to carry all of your books, notebooks, planners, calculators, pencils, folders and laptop to each of your classes.
  1. De-lofting your bed — not for the one-man-wonder.
    So you want to de-loft your bed? I mean, yeah, you’re an 18- or 19-year-old individual who doesn’t need help. You’re on your own now so you need to start doing things yourself, right? Wrong. In my opinion, asking for help is never a bad thing. People at Truman are here to make sure you don’t literally fall flat on your face.