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Recent Saint Augustine's College graduate and former Student Government Association President Masac Dorlouis offers advice to freshmen on behalf of the "Aug Blog".

Entering your freshmen year of college has got to be one of the most emotionally charged experiences you’ll go through in life. No more than a couple months ago you graduated from high school, but already you are beginning another chapter in your life. You are worried about so much, yet you have nothing to fear because these tips that I will share with you helped me graduate from college a world citizen, leader and professional with a degree.

1. Be Purpose-Driven: Many of you students come from different backgrounds, nationalities, and classes of life, however you seek a common goal—graduating with a degree in a timely manner. Odd thing is some of you don’t understand why you are in college, or feel forced to attend college because that is what your parents wanted for you. Others are just here to party. Whatever the reason for your enrollment into Saint Augustine’s College, you are now in the doors so find out exactly what it is you see yourself doing in life as a career, declare a major, and put forth the effort. Do this for you, those loved ones who have shown you support, and the lifestyle you want to live in the future.

2. You Must Work: Since you were young, people have always told you to dream, but have you ever wondered what exactly must you do to make your dream a reality? The answer is simple—work. Successful people like President Barack Obama, Beyonce Knowles, and Michael Jordan didn’t become great because they did what they could to get by. Each of them worked diligently at what they do to become the best in their perspective careers. Gain better study habits and start trying to spend time experiencing what it is you want to become whether it is an architect or a pediatrician. So don’t settle for less, apply yourself and do the best.

3. Prioritize: Class time is not a pass time! Your most important responsibility in college is to attend class. Could you see yourself throwing $20,000 out the window? That is essentially what you are doing when you don’t go to class—wasting your money and your opportunity. College differs from high school in that you don’t go straight from one class to another. Instead, you schedule your classes according to what time and day they are offered: English 101 may be scheduled at 8 a.m., but your next class (College Algebra) may not be scheduled until 12 p.m. Creating a schedule or buying a planner can help you manage your time so that you are maximizing the time you are not in class by creating homework/study hours or at least keeping track of what you are doing with it.

4.Get Involved: Often times students feel as though they don’t belong or get homesick, but one way of coping with these feelings is to join a club, organization, sorority, fraternity, sport or performing art. This is a great way to establish bonds with your fellow Falcons, while growing through the experiences you gain by being involved on your campus. You may also have an opportunity to display your strengths or even talents by joining the right organization. There are even societies you can join in each department that can further help you develop in your major. In college, you’ll find that you will have time on your hands, but what is critical to your success is what you do with it.

The tips listed above are the top four, but this list is not conclusive. Remember that you always have help available because even though you are attending college by yourself, you are not alone. Get to know your professors, or seek a tutor if you need more assistance. Lastly, find that balance because college is a mixture of social and academic activity. Do what you need to do so you can do what you want to do! Best wishes freshmen.

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