The Official Blog of Misericordia University

A Survival Guide for Incoming First-Years

Posted by Guest Student Blogger on May 1, 2017

As my first year comes to an end here at Misericordia University, I was able to pick-up on a few things that helped make my transition from high school to college easier. Some of these steps you might have already heard before; some you may not. Hopefully, you will be able to benefit from my experience and enjoy your first year at Misericordia.


24 steps toward a successful transition

  1. Orientation might seem boring, but it is very crucial to attend everything. Orientation helps you meet new students, faculty members, and shows you where your classes will be. I recommend that you take full advantage of orientation.
  2. Join a club or a sport - both offer opportunities to have fun, meet new people, and get some exercise. Some clubs are tied-in with certain majors to make your learning experience more interesting. 
  3. Sporting events are always great to attend, especially any home playoff games. 
  4. Start studying for tests earlier than usual. In high school, you could probably get away with studying a couple days prior to the exam. However, in college, I would suggest going over your material about a week-and-a-half in advance. 
  5. Try to rent used textbooks – it is always cheaper to rent. 
  6. The Dining Hall closes at 8:30pm Monday-Friday, 6:00pm on Saturday, and 6:30pm on Sunday. (These times are subject to change) 
  7. Chick-Fil-A closes at 11:00pm Monday-Friday and 12:00am on Saturday. It is closed on Sunday. 
  8. Take your notes on your laptop or iPad - it is quicker than writing them by hand (and saves you from getting a hand cramp) 
  9. Try your best not to procrastinate; it is way more stressful if you do.IMG_0201.jpg
  10. Bring a fan - it can get really warm in your room during the warmer months.
  11. Keep your door and windows open to create a cross breeze which will keep your room cool.
  12. Bunk your beds if you can – it opens up more space in your room.
  13. Bring a filtered water pitcher – it will save you money rather than constantly buying water bottles.
  14. For the second semester, you will have the ability to pick your own classes - if you like sleeping-in, pick later classes. If you want your day to be done early so you can enjoy the free time, pick early classes.
  15. Take advantage of the great restaurants and stores that are within walking distance. Most of the local restuarants will give you a discount for being a Misericorida student if you show your id.
  16. If you do not feel like walking, make friends with other freshman with a car or any upper classmen with a car. (It will be easier to make friends with upperclassmen if you play a sport)
  17. Remember to use the free University shuttle service that will take you to places around Dallas and into the nearby city of Wilkes-Barre.
  18. The Library is always a great place to get work done. The dorms can be very noisy.
  19. The Library extends its hours during finals week and provides free snacks and drinks.
  20. Always check your email in the morning; you never know when a professor will cancel class.
  21. Sign up for MUAlerts; they always send texts when school is delayed or closed.
  22. The bell tower always goes off 4-5 minutes before the hour. This will be a great reminder of how much time you have to get to your classes.
  23. If you know that you have a weakness in a particular subject, sign-up for a tutor at the very beginning of the class so that you don't fall behind.
  24. Take advantage of the services and workshops on study skills - don't be afraid to ask for help.

The first year of college can be emotionally and psychologically draining.  While it may seem like a lot to handle, it is really not that bad. Misericordia offers a good amount of support for almost every challenge; it is a very welcoming and caring community.  So, there is no need to be intimidated.  If you can manage to follow this advice, you will easily survive and even enjoy your first year at Misericordia University. I’m sure that you will have fun in the process!

  • Drew Jarvie '20, History. Drew is a first-year student and is also a member of Misericordia University's men's soccer team. He enjoys playing sports and volunteering as a referee for his hometown soccer leagues in Lancaster, PA.

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Topics: #MUFirstYear

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You are reading the official blog of Misericordia University. Here you will find insights from students, faculty, staff, and alumni about what it's like to be here and be #MisericordiaProud.