Toothbrush, shampoo, mascara, phone charger, phone… oh, shoot!

Move in day, in a nutshell. You’re practically shaking with a blend of anticipation, excitement, and fear – altogether a complete nervous wreck.

Move in day. Today marks a lot of “firsts” for a first-time freshman. Your first time choosing your own schedule, first time being allowed to have coffee in class, first time buying your own cereal… But it especially marks the first time that a college student will have the perhaps daunting opportunity make every decision, day in and day out, on their own.

Your mind foams over with the typical, “What if I get lost on the way to class?” “What if I forget something?” “What if I don’t get along with my roommates?” and suddenly your hands go a little clammy.

Fast forward almost two weeks later. This morning I’m sitting at my desk in a freshman apartment of Tower Hall (by far the best freshman living, by the way – I highly recommend it!), sipping a mug of hot chocolate, still in my pajamas and calmly checking the time every few minutes (because I don’t have class until ten), reflecting on what an astounding two weeks I’ve already experienced here at CBU.

My lovely roommates and I at our first orientation chapel service. Lots of fun!

With proper preparation, all of the concerns voiced above can certainly be demolished. For those of you readers who may be in the boat I was in just a year ago – a high school senior looking ahead to the prospect of college – these are things you can certainly begin mulling over before choosing where to go.

I may be just starting out this “college thing,” but I definitely some “hot-off-the-grill” advice to offer. :)

The concern of getting lost before class? Well, that one’s easy. Have a friend show you around the day before, or even ask a professor or advisor on campus to help you out, before getting lost.

Make yourself a checklist to glance at each morning before leaving your room. Keys, ID card, books… and, don’t forget writing utensils! Yes, those are still used.

As for your roommates – well, an argument carries two ends. Be the end that refuses to argue. Be the end that simplifies issues before they become complicated. Take the top bunk if no one wants it… believe me, it’s worth that initial pain of trying to set your sheets without being able to see them (or, maybe I’m just short).

And most importantly, make the process of choosing a college a critical one. I’m blessed to be here at CBU, where advisors are always present (whether in the form of an adult or fellow student), and the culture consistently warm and welcoming. I chose this school on purpose, because I know what kind of a person I am, and what it takes to make myself feel at home.

All in all, I’ll end with this. College isn’t nearly as scary as it is sometimes made up to be. Remember to let God in on the decision making process. After all, His input is the key to developing what CBU so encourages to their students – a life’s purpose.

Good luck! Maybe I’ll see you around next year. :)