4 New Year’s Resolutions for College Students
By Madison White
As a new year begins, most of us are thinking ahead to what we want to accomplish in the next 365 days. As a new year also brings a new semester, many students may also be thinking ahead. Because no college student is the same, there can be a wide variety of resolutions students may want to consider from academics to social life to preparing for the future. If you have yet to set a serious resolution for the next year, keep reading! Here are four resolutions for college students and some helpful tips on how to actually achieve them.
1. Do Better Academically
Because school is usually the priority of every college student’s life, it makes sense that this would be one of your New Year’s Resolutions. Whether you’re already a great student or one who could use a little bit more help, there is always room for improvement on the academic front. When making resolutions, it is also a good idea to get specific. Instead of saying you want to do better academically, try making a more specific goal like “I want to learn how to research more efficiently” or “I want to challenge myself with this difficult class.” You can even break this down into smaller, easier goals to achieve like “I want to spend an hour studying every night.”
How to achieve this resolution: Use your campus resources like tutors and study groups; find places on campus that help you focus; find other students or friends to study with (be careful though, you don’t want people who will distract you); set a schedule for studying certain materials; visit your professors’ office hours; attend all classes.
2. Make New Friends
Besides being strictly academic, college is a perfect time to meet new people and make friends that will last a lifetime. If you’re someone on the shyer side or someone who just hasn’t found the right group of people yet, this might be at the top of your resolution list. While you don’t want to set the overall goal of “making x amount of friends” because you can’t force people to be friends with you, there are lots of other things you can resolve to do that will lead to new friendships.
How to achieve this resolution: Join groups and/or societies on campus; go to campus-organized events; talk to the people you sit next to in class; give compliments to people; hang out and study in public places like the student center and library; volunteer.
3. Try New Things
If you’ve fallen into the same routine of going to class, studying, and going to sleep, you may be looking to try out something new. While there are lots of wonderful new things to try during college, you might feel scared or anxious about stepping out of your comfort zone. This is okay! Take small steps and allow yourself to fail at certain things. Truly, college is the best time to try new things because there are often fewer risks and responsibilities that you may incur. Now is the time!
How to achieve this resolution: Take an interesting elective class; try out a new club or society that intrigues you; seek out new coffee shops, restaurants, or other fun places in your town; attend an event you’ve never been to; set aside a couple hours each week for fun activities; take a look at studying abroad or other student travel.
4. Prepare for the Future
While lots of college students are focused on having fun and doing well in the coming year, others may be looking even further ahead. Some people think that just having a degree will help them secure their dream job, but that may not always be the case. Students are increasingly required to have done lots of career-boosting things in college even before they step into the workforce. If graduation is on your mind, it might be a good idea to start thinking about what you can do to prepare for life after college.
How to achieve this resolution: Find an internship in your field; shadow someone whose job you are curious about; talk to your professors about the future; volunteer; take a leadership role in a club or society; write and edit your resume; practice job interviews; visit your campus’s career center; attend networking events and conferences; go to your school’s job fairs and events.
As always, resolutions are only as effective as the people making them. While it is great to set goals for yourself, don’t expect perfection. Even if you make a small mistake, that doesn’t mean you need to give up on your goal completely. Be kind to yourself but also remember your reasons for making your resolution in the first place. Try and find that initial motivation and keep going! Cheers to another great year!