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Succeeding & Thriving on Campus

College freshmen can be happy and healthy with these 5 tips.

How can you find friends, fit in, and stay happy and healthy when you’re starting things new away from home? With our five tips, new college students will be thriving at school in no time!

1. Get involved in student activities.

One great way for new college students to find their own social niche at college is by participating in student activities. From choral groups to career clubs to intramural sports teams, there are a wide variety of ways for students to get involved in student life on campus.

Intramural sports teams are also a great low-stress way for college students to stay healthy – and keep off that dreaded “Freshman 15″!

2. Learn your way around campus.

Finding your way around campus is one of the first steps for new college students to start feeling comfortable in their surroundings. Get a campus map and start finding your way around. Locating important sites like the library, your classrooms, and the dining hall is a good start.

If your college or university campus offers school transportation services, be sure to find out how these work. Many schools offer on-campus transportation to help students get around, as well as shuttle services that transport students into a nearby city.

3. Find a student job.

Getting a student job is a great way for new college students to make new friends, meet new people – and make a little extra spending money! Many schools offer on-campus employment opportunities in the dining hall, library, and other campus buildings.

Sometimes on-campus jobs are scarce, but if you find competition fierce, don’t despair! If you live in a US college town, there are likely to be plenty of nearby off-campus jobs available, including retail, restaurant, and coffee shop work.

4. Stay safe and healthy.

Chances are you have nothing to worry about in college. But don’t take chances about your health and safety on campus!

Make sure you know how to reach both campus and city police. If your college is emergency call boxes, find out where these are on your frequently-traveled routes. At night, your college may even offer a service to take you back to your dorm room when you are alone.

You’ll be a healthier college student if you’re happy. Take advantage of the social opportunities that US college dorms offer. The first step is getting to know your roommate – odds are that this will be the first person you meet at school!

Dorms usually have social events just for new college students at the beginning of the school year. This will allow you to get to know their neighbors, and are a great opportunity to start making friends at school.

5. Adjust to US life if you are an international student.

Adjusting to college life can be especially challenging (and exciting!) for international students. In fact, international student clubs are great ways to meet other new college students from other countries.

Try not to limit your social circle to just other international students, however. Don’t be shy about getting to know your fellow classmates. Remember: The college experience is new for everyone!