A Freshman Perspective

One freshman's perspective on the first couple weeks of school.

Over the summer, I received endless emails from ASU. Some were informative and provided guidance for move in and the first day of class. Others encouraged me to connect with other students and organizations as early as possible. With all these resources available to me, I felt confident that my transition from high school to college would be smooth and painless.

Graduating from a high school with nearly 3,000 students, ASU did not intimidate me despite being the largest university in the country. When I moved in to my dorm on August 15, I was surprised at how efficient the entire process was. The well-organized process ensured that I did not have to lift a finger and my room was completely set up and organized within a few hours.

However, nothing could quite prepare me for the sheer amount of organized chaos that was associated with the first week of college. Welcome Week at ASU was a complete whirlwind of events.

The first event I attended was the Barrett Fall Assembly. Although I admit I was hesitant because I assumed it would just be another pep assembly, I am glad that I decided to go. It was very informative and I was able to learn more about the campus as well as what Barrett and ASU have to offer.

Another interesting event that sticks out in my mind is the Passport to ASU, where I was exposed to the many clubs and organizations at ASU. Granted, this event was overwhelming to say the least. With a swarm of students navigating through two of the largest buildings on campus, the array of booths and tables seemed endless and unapproachable. Every event I attended during Welcome Week stressed the importance of getting involved and encouraged freshmen to seek new experiences during their four years as a Sun Devil. I felt compelled to find something that sparked my interest at Passport, and began to get anxious as I reached the end of the event and still hadn’t found one that genuinely grabbed my attention. I managed to get some information from a few different organizations that piqued my curiosity but still was not convinced that any one of them was what I wanted. I expressed my concern to an upperclassman who advised me to attend a few meetings of those that seemed interesting which would then lead to an activity or club that I liked. Hopefully I would find my niche before the end of my first semester.

The first day of college was completely different that anything I had ever experienced before.

My roommate had a class at 7:30 whereas I, thankfully, didn’t start my day until 10:30, so I enjoyed breakfast at the cafeteria with a couple friends and then I was on my way to class. My first college lecture, to be exact.

Although I had visited campus a few times and had already settled in my dorm a week before classes started, the first day of classes still proved to be something completely new to me and honestly, a little overwhelming. Despite having walked to my classes twice and essentially memorizing the campus map, I left my dorm thirty minutes before class started. I found the building easily but I struggled to locate the exact classroom and ended up asking someone I passed in the hallway, only to realize I was on the wrong floor – at which point, I undoubtedly imagined a neon arrow with the word ‘freshman’ constantly blinking went up over my head.

I knew that college would be different from high school felt like something was missing when class ended without a bell. I walked back to the cafeteria for lunch and was amazed to find that the line of students wrapped around the perimeter of the cafeteria. Worried that I wouldn’t have enough time to make it to my next class, I grabbed something and ate as quickly as humanly possible and left for the other side of campus.

I began to relax more as the day progressed and by the time my last class rolled around at 3 p.m., I felt confident that the next four years would be a breeze. However, my last class was the dreaded Human Event, a mandatory course for all Barrett freshmen. Although many upperclassmen had nothing but praise for my professor, I was still nervous to be in a class with such a demanding reputation.

Thankfully, those upperclassmen were right (as they usually are) and I felt incredibly comfortable in that.

Overall, my first week was an absolute frenzy. Welcome Week at ASU made each freshman feel prepared by exposing them to all the available opportunities, but I also felt like I was falling behind before I even started classes. I appreciated the effort to ensure each student was aware of their potential as well as the resources available at their disposal; however, I felt like I was receiving too much information at once and suddenly felt like I didn’t know where to look or what to do next. I was overwhelmed with all the information and expectations and did not know how much I should or could do. I ended the week with a better appreciation and understanding of the expectations and responsibilities of college and the demands of balancing an academic and social life. 

Hopefully I will figure it out soon and will be well on my way to a memorable college experience.

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