Dear Freshman Self...
Welcome to campus class of 2024! We all know that the start of freshman year can be exciting, overwhelming, fun, and challenging all at the same time. But we've all been through it, and you're not alone. Lucky for you, the seniors from the WIN e-board have some great tips, tricks, thoughts, and advice to share with you as you adjust to campus.
Here's what our seniors would say to their freshman selves...
Molly Soja (President)
Dear Freshman Year Molly,
Welcome to BC! You don’t know it yet, but you will find some of your life-long friends and passions in the next few years. Everything is new and exciting, and enjoy every minute because the next 4 years will go by in the blink of an eye. I know I sound like such an adult right now telling you that life flies, but ~spoiler~ it really does.
Speaking of spoilers, here is some advice on some events that will change your life.
I know the Newton bus can be annoying, but you will meet your best friend on one of those rides. Talk to the people you meet on the bus because you all are in the same position and just want to make friends.
Go to allll the events that interest you (especially WIN events )- you will meet another one of your best friends at End of Semester Dinner! These girls will help guide you to some huge passions and career goals. They are also all SO sweet and will feel like family.
Don’t be afraid to go to those scary networking events. No one is there to tell you that you aren’t good enough; they just want to know all about who you are! The more you go, the easier they will be!
Finally, get to know your classmates and professors. They are all your teammates and want to work with you to succeed in various areas of your undergraduate life. You will create life-long connections with these people, and the community is so supportive and collaborative!
I hope this helps, and good luck with the next four years! There are so many great things to come.
Sincerely, Senior Year Molly
Jenna Steichen (Director of Growth)
Hello Jenna :)
You might not realize this yet, but these next four years are going to change you. You might be content with where you’re at right now, but I hope that you can open your heart to the endless number of ways in which you can serve others and become a better person.
Growth is a beautiful thing, but it’s not always easy. Sometimes along the journey you’ll feel overjoyed, and other times things are going to be tough. However, through it all, you need to believe in yourself and be your biggest supporter. Be confident in the person you are and actively work toward becoming the person you want to be. Put yourself into uncomfortable situations — volunteer to speak in front of crowds, take on leadership positions, engage in difficult conversations. Although these things might seem daunting at first, they will help you grow and empower you to tackle even bigger opportunities in the future.
Recognize that everyone has their own story and their own challenges. Take time to hear those stories and try to understand what brings each person joy. Differences are a beautiful thing and there is so much to be learned from others.
Take time to get to know your professors. They care deeply about their students and want to see you succeed. Ask questions that go beyond class material and never stop being curious.
BC is an incredible place filled with so much love. If you ever catch yourself dwelling on the things that you wish were different, take time to make a list of everything you have to be grateful for. There is always something to be grateful for.
Put in the extra effort to connect with people that are going to help you become a better person. Remember that you’re your only competitor, so play your own game. Take time to reflect and pay attention to what game you’re playing and the impact it’s having on you and those around you. Be intentional.
Believe in yourself, be confident, and see beauty in the world around you. You have so much potential and the only limit to what you can do is your own doubt, so put it behind you and go forth and set the world aflame.
Grace Kilroy (Director of Speakers)
Dear Freshman Year Grace,
Listen—I know coming from a public high school, you may be freaking out about finally being at a private university, surrounded by a whole host of geniuses and people who look like they have their lives all together. First of all, you need to know that you have every right to be here, just like anyone else. Although other people came from prestigious boarding schools, private high schools, or well-funded public schools, you worked hard to be here and you will continue to work hard to reap the benefits of the opportunities you have been given.
Now that that’s out of the way, I have some advice for you:
Your freshman year roommate does not have to be your best friend. Although it looks like that’s the case from everyone’s instagrams, you have no idea what goes on behind the scenes. As long as you can co-live/ co-exist together, everything will be more than fine.
Although you want to sign up for every club possible like you did in high school, know that you don’t need to be involved in everything in order to have a wonderful college experience. Find one or two or three things that you really care about, and throw yourself into it.
Your freshman year class schedule will NOT make or break your time here. You will get the credits you need to graduate, make some friends in class, and maybe form a relationship or two with some awesome professors.
On that note, go to office hours (virtual or not)!! I didn’t do that until the end of spring semester of freshman year, and I do regret it. Your professors are there not only to help you, but also get to know you—reach out!
Study hard, but don’t let that determine all of your free time. Academics are important, but so is your mental health.
Try to explore different libraries or lounges around campus, and venture out to some cafes on Saturdays to do some light work with friends. Ask friends for recommendations, or ask the WIN eboard!! ;)
Be open to new opportunities and attend cultural club events! At least for me, this was the first time I got to be exposed to a host of people from different countries, cultures, religions, family backgrounds, etc. Use your time here to learn both inside and outside the classroom. Above all else, give yourself a break. Change is stressful enough, let alone moving away from home for the first time, being challenged by new curriculum and class structures, and making a whole new set of friends. Be willing to try new things, meet new people, and be vulnerable. The next four years here are going to challenge you in a lot of new ways, but growth and comfort do not coexist.
Love, Senior Year Grace (ahh!)
P.S. - Use Google Calendar. It will change your life.
Hannah Fay (Vice President)
Dear Freshman Hannah,
You did it! All your hard work has paid off, and now you get to spend four years at this amazing place called Boston College. I know it seems overwhelming -- you’re nervous about making new friends, getting involved in clubs, and classes being difficult. But trust me, you’ll do just fine.
Moving in, you’ll be sad to leave your home, your friends, your family, and the beach. That will only last for a few hours -- pretty soon, you’ll be so busy with so many new experiences that you won’t even have time to be homesick. You’ll visit, of course, but once you return to your hometown for the first time you’ll find yourself homesick for BC (no, really!). You can’t have spontaneous late night conversations with floormates in your living room at home the same way you can at school!
You’ll make lots of friends the first few weeks -- don’t stress about forgetting names, and don’t stress about drifting apart. Some of your first semester freshman friends will be your friends for all of college, but most won’t. And that’s OK! Don’t force yourself to stay friends with people who aren’t a great match for you. You’ll find your people, probably when you least expect it.
Soon, you’ll start to hear a whole lot about “housing” and “pick times” and “8-mans.” The stress will set in. You’ll hear stories and rush to find a group sooner than you should to avoid worst-case scenarios. And the worst case scenario will probably happen anyway. It’s OK. It happens to a lot of people -- and if it didn’t, you wouldn’t have met some of your best friends at Boston College. Everything happens for a reason!
Oh, and I know you’ll be stressed about classes, grades, and snagging a good job or internship. Knowing you, there’s not much I can say to get you to stress less! But do know that no matter how intimidated you are by difficult classes, you ARE prepared. Don’t let imposter syndrome get to you. You made it to BC, you’re smart, and you’re capable. There will always be bumps in the road, but you can do this.
Moral of the story: don’t try to plan things out too much, and don’t set too many expectations. Things will not go according to plan, you’ll make mistakes, and things will go wrong. But if all that didn’t happen, you wouldn’t be where you are today: a senior who looks back fondly on her time at BC, wishing she had more time here. These four years will be amazing, and they will fly by. Take in every moment, and even though you might roll your eyes, don’t take it for granted. Things can change in the blink of an eye - even if you think you have plenty of time (ahem, global pandemic).
Most of all: have fun! I’m jealous that you’re at the beginning of your four years rather than the end. Wanna trade places?
- Senior Year Hannah
Whether you're a freshman just getting started or a senior looking back on the time gone by, we hope you cherish every moment. If there's one thing we've all learned in the past few months, it's to never take anything for granted. Make the most of every day, and have a great year Eagles!!