College 101: Here’s what freshman year is really like

College is a time of tremendous personal change, says author Julie Zeilinger.  Credit: Fuse
College is a time of tremendous personal change, says author Julie Zeilinger.
Credit: Fuse

People sometimes forget that freshman year of college, in addition to being a time of exploration and new experiences, is also a time of tremendous personal change. In her new book “College 101: A Girl’s Guide to Freshman Year,” rising Barnard College senior Julie Zeilinger explores the reality of college life. She shares some advice with readers:

Every day won’t be the best day ever

“One of the reasons I wrote this book was because pop culture keeps telling us that college is the most fun ever, the best four years of your life,” says Zeilinger. “College is a huge transition for many rising freshmen. It’s a very different lifestyle.” She urges students to be realistic.

No, everyone isn’t partying without you

“There’s this idea that people are partying all of the time or that people are hooking up constantly,” notes the author. “In reality, people are just living their lives.”

There’s no right way to study

“When I got to college, I would study in the library all of the time, because I thought that that’s what you are supposed to do in college,” says Zeilinger, a sociology major. “But I just couldn’t concentrate there. It wasn’t until I started studying in a coffee shop that I finally found what was working for me.”

“There’s no one formula,” she adds.

Time management is key

Remember, the majority of work in college is done outside of the classroom, so it’s important to manage your schedule. “Succeeding academically is not about being the smartest,” says Zeilinger. “A lot of it is strategy.”

Take care of yourself

Don’t be afraid to tell someone if you are struggling. “We sometimes act like we don’t want anyone to know,” Zeilinger says. “Then we feel very alone and we feel like we are failing. But no one is alone.”

Follow Lakshmi Gandhi on Twitter @LakshmiGandhi.


Man dies trapped in elevator shaft at Bronx…

A man in his twenties died after being trapped in an elevator shaft of a Bronx building early Monday, police said.


Sierra Leone Ebola patient, recovered from family, dies…

An Ebola patient whose family sparked a nationwide hunt when they forcefully removed her from a treatment center and took her to a traditional healer has died.


VIDEO: Cop reassigned as NYPD investigates alleged head…

An officer alleged to have stomped on a Brooklyn man's head last week had his gun taken away and placed on modified duty.


New York Times calls for legalization of pot

The New York Times editorial board on Saturday endorsed a repeal of the federal ban on marijuana, becoming the largest paper in the nation to back the idea.


Newport Folk Festival: Photo gallery of 35 moments…

As has been the tradition since Bob Dylan plugged in a bajillion years ago, the Newport Folk Festival embraces more musical genres than its name implies.


MKTO: Behind the bromance

MKTO's Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller talk about the American Dream tour, Demi Lovato and getting turned down by girls.


James Earl Jones and Rose Byrne head to…

Two-time Tony winner James Earl Jones returns to the New York stage next month as an eccentric grandfather in a revival of the 1930s comedy…


Box office: Scarlett Johansson wins battle of brains…

Scarlett Johansson's "Lucy" handily dispatched with Dwayne Johnson's "Hercules" over the weekend.


Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.


Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…


Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Auto racing

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400


This Week In Health: Friends share similar DNA,…

Friends share similar DNA, study finds Location: U.S. Study subjects: Nearly 2,000 people Results: When it comes to our social networks, it seems that birds of…


Are liberal arts colleges turning away from the…

Bryn Mawr College, a small women's college located just outside of Philadelphia, announced last week that it would be making standardized tests like the SAT…


Recent grads discover school superintendent plagiarized parts of…

  Two recent high school graduates made a surprising discovery about the commencement speech their school superintendent delivered at their graduation: portions of it was copied…


Feeling stuck? Get out of the entry-level job…

Television and movies may be littered with 20-something characters who seem directionless when it comes to their careers, but author Mary Traina says she finds…