It’s almost that time of the year again! Where did summer go?
It’s the time when students start signing up for their fall classes. It’s when freshmen start their orientations. I know my cousin just got back from his freshman orientation, and he was very excited to meet his roommate and get going in the fall.
However, as fun as college can be, it can also be overwhelming — especially if you don’t know what to expect. So, I wanted to throw these three things out there for anyone thinking about choosing classes for the fall.
It’s college, and you don’t need to always follow exactly what the “plan” is. Follow these warnings, and have a great time! And don’t forget to check out our 101 freshmen tips.
1. Don’t Feel Like You Have to Only Take Classes in Your Major
First, you don’t always have to take classes in your major. In fact, I recommend that you try out a few different areas to discover what you really like. It can take time to figure out your major, so don’t trap yourself in something right away.
If you’re planning on being an engineering major, try out some humanities, or maybe other science courses, and decide if you really enjoy engineering more. Plus, most of these other classes will still help you graduate since they will probably be required for your general education anyway.
2. Don’t Forget the Fun Electives
Next, don’t forget to have fun and do some frivolous stuff! In college, this can mean taking random classes just for the heck of it.
Never done drama before? Take an acting class. Looking for something artistic and crafty? Maybe you should take a jewelry-making class or even a pottery class. Want something really different? How about taking an underwater basket-weaving class that combines both scuba diving and basket-weaving. That’s a challenge!
Most universities offer these extracurricular classes for some credit, but usually only one or two. However, it can be extremely rewarding to have done it in the end.
3. Don’t Miss Out on a Personal Finance Class/Club
Finally, I have to promote this: Take a personal finance class or join a finance club. Once you graduate, you will be thrown in feet first into the realm of personal finance with your job, your living situation, and more.
College is a great time to figure out the basics of budgeting, investing, and more. If you don’t know if there are fixed-term bonds available, or what an ETF is, then you should really consider taking a personal finance class to at least understand the basics of investing.
A personal finance class can also teach you how to deal with student loan debt and other things to get you on a solid footing at graduation.
What other things should college freshmen consider when signing up for classes?
Robert Farrington is America’s Millennial Money Expert® and America’s Student Loan Debt Expert™, and the founder of The College Investor, a personal finance site dedicated to helping millennials escape student loan debt to start investing and building wealth for the future. You can learn more about him here.
He regularly writes about investing, student loan debt, and general personal finance topics geared towards anyone wanting to earn more, get out of debt, and start building wealth for the future.
He has been quoted in major publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox, ABC, NBC, and more. He is also a regular contributor to Forbes.