8 college tips for surviving the second semester

Like other college students, I got over the fear of my very first semester and looked forward to my second. Even after a few years, the second semester always felt easier to approach.

Are you ready to take on the second semester? (Credit: College Media Matters)

Are you ready to take on the second semester? (Credit: College Media Matters)

I created my own do-it-yourself guide for surviving (and flourishing) in the second semester. Here are some college tips for the second semester.

Second semester tips for college students

1. Plan to arrive a few days before classes begin so you can settle back into your dorm, get your schedule of classes, find unfamiliar classrooms and lecture halls, and catch up with friends. You’ll also need to get your new textbooks before classes start. Check out CengageBrain for all your textbook needs!

2.Update your schedule and calendar. If you created a handy schedule or calendar app for the first semester, update it for the second. Put in your new classes’ dates, times and locations, plus your extracurricular activities.

3. Psych yourself up for another few months of studies. “Don’t check your brain at the door when you return to campus for spring semester. Focus on achieving your goals for the semester and hold fast to the schedule you’ve outlined. The best way to break into second semester is to proceed full steam ahead,” suggested a writer in “Returning For Spring Semester,” online at Scholarships.com.

4. Try something new. The first semester is a settling-in time, and not just for freshmen. By the second semester, college students are more knowledgeable and comfortable with their life on campus. Try a new sport or club, try out for the theater, take a science lab, tutor an underclassman, volunteer at a charity off campus. Whatever you choose, try a new experience.

Second semester senior year

The second semester for a senior is the final stretch. GPAs are finalized, the job search goes into high gear, resumes are polished and interview skills are learned. Here are some things to keep in mind being a second semester senior:

1. Make sure you have enough credits to graduate. You’ll either be cramming in many courses to fulfill your credit requirement, or you’ll be coasting with only a few classes because you’ve already got most of the courses you need. If you’re the latter, take a class you don’t need. “Take a class because it sounds interesting and the professor is great. A class not in your major, a class in a department you’ve never adventured to, a class taught by a professor you loved…Learn for the sake of learning…savor the last bits of academia you’ll have for a while,” reported in “10 Things You Should Do In Your Last Semester of College,” by Craig Dudek, posted December 18, 2013, on ThoughtCatalog.com.

2. Learn to budget for the outside world. In “10 Highs And Lows Of Being A Second Semester College Senior,” posted in EliteDaily.com, March 2, 2015, Kaitlyn writes: “Pro:You used to buy all of your books for the semester in perfect condition. Now, you make friends with your classmates so you can split the cost if the book is absolutely 100 percent mandatory. Con:Not buying books also means not getting that refund at the end of the year when everyone else resorts to returning bottles for cab money.”

3. Network with your friends. Keep in contact with the students, professors, professionals and colleagues you’ve met in college. They could come in handy in your future business, career and professional environments.

4. Use up your parents’ health insurance. After age 25, young adults move off their parents’ health insurance. If you don’t yet have a good job that will provide insurance, get a thorough physical, get your teeth cleaned at the dentist and get your eyes checked. Start off your adult years in good health.

What else should you do during the second semester? Tell us in the comments.

1 reply
  1. Leong Siew says:

    The second semester is one of the most crucial periods during your college life because you would be steeping into the next level of student life where you will be at least a bit familiar with the place and surroundings. However, the fears that you would face while stepping into the 2nd semester can be quite depressing and the tips mentioned in this article will be of real help for sure!


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