Wednesday, 22 April 2015

10 things to keep in mind during undergraduate college days.

DISCLAIMER: This post is solely my thoughts and views. No one is forced to agree to any of the pointers. Friendly and constructive discussions are welcome.

I am assuming the audience for this post are newly joined undergraduates or students hoping to join college soon.This post is dedicated to juniors who seek my advice on college life and how to go about it.

1. Develop a lifestyle.Try to be organized. Set small goals and targets. Not just for academics but for your overall day-to-day activities. Involve yourself in any outdoor activities. Be it sports or volunteering. 


2. In your first year explore all that the university has to offer you. Don't restrict your inner self. Let yourself loose. Streamline yourself in the following years. Its better to try than to feel guilty later on.

3. Dont expect the professors and university to provide you with all the learning you need. Ask for it. If you can't get the resources in campus, try online resources. MOOCs such as edx, coursera, udacity are great platforms. Give it a shot. During vacations, take up interesting projects and internships. Internships provide you with practical learning, which you will not be able to get in the university. Internships and projects look good in your CV too. 

4. Articulate your thoughts. Learn to write. Blog or keep a personal diary. Or just a folder with stick-it notes to yourself. It will be a great gift to your 40 year old self.

5. Do what you love. Participate in events, because you enjoy it. Not because its going to look good in your resume. 

6. Make good friends. The kind of ones that would skip a party to volunteer as audience for your boring presentation. These are the guys who will remain in your life even after graduation.

7. Take all your courses seriously. Work hard on projects and lab assignments, however silly they may seem. Trust me, this is where most of your learning comes from. Well, a good CGPA as a by-product doesn't hurt either.

8. Before consulting your class 'geek' for help, try to play around with the problem you face. Break stuff. And fix them.

9. Research the subject electives before you choose them. Do not blindly follow the herd. There are times when learning something you love is better than acing an easy class, that didn't really teach you much. I would thumbs up a B grade where you learnt your way through the problem than a A+ wherein you did not put any effort in.

10. Write letters to your family. It means alot to them. Talking on phone once in a day or week is good. But, the  feeling of receiving a well-written letter from kids is a different experience (which all parents deserve). Write to them about your new interests, your learnings, your friends. They will love it.

For more practical advice, I would recommend you to read  Penelope's advice to new college graduates. She speaks about very important pointers to be Job Ready as soon as you complete your degree course. I would love to hear from you guys and help you with your decisions, if you do need help. Please donot hesitate to write to me. Take care. 

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