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10 Tips On Surviving Sophomore Year

1. Avoid the sophomore slump.
It might be harder to do than it seems. You’re not a freshman anymore, so the pressure’s off. You know your way around; you know who your friends are. You’re way more comfortable this year, and there’s so much college ahead of you, you might feel like it’s all right to relax. But it’s not. Sophomore year counts for something, too. Though you’re not yet an upperclassman, in a very short time you will be. Then, it’s out the door and onto the real world, with a GPA that reflects your efforts sophomore year as well as all of the other ones. Bottom line: it’s great that the anxiety of being new is over with, but some pressure to succeed is okay.

2. Don’t recede into the background.
Maybe you’re not as comfortable as some of your classmates, even though you are a returning student. Sophomore year can be especially tough. Historically, the sophomore class is the one that gets the least attention. You’re not new; you’re not about to graduate. The conventional wisdom seems that for the moment, you’re okay. But what if you’re not? If you’re still having trouble adjusting, you should talk to someone, your resident adviser, perhaps. Try an extracurricular activity you didn’t last year. There’s still plenty of time to have a great college experience.

3. See your academic adviser.
Having an appointment with your academic adviser may help you rekindle a feeling of focus. The two of you can talk about your options for your major course of study, and the rest of college as well. If you feel yourself slacking off, tell your academic adviser you need a motivational speech.

4. Take choosing your major seriously.
Though picking a major does not lock you into a life lived within the confines of the subject area you pick, it will affect you in the job market.

5. Go to the Career Counseling Center.
A visit to the Career Counseling Center might help clarify what major you should pick. Make an appointment to talk to a career counselor, discuss what types of careers are available and appealing to you. This might help you decide on a course of study.

6. Consider an internship or volunteer opportunity.
The more real-world experience and exposure you’ve had to the industry or field of your choice, the better when it comes to applying to jobs after graduation. You might talk to your career counselor about what opportunities exist, or email an alum in a field that interests you and volunteer yourself.

7. Make plans for your summer.

8. Consider a term abroad or on exchange next year.

9. Do take that fun elective you’ve been eyeing in the course catalog.

10. Make time for fun with friends.

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