When I was in high school I was so looking forward to getting away and going to college. I had my mind set on a small out of state school. I was ready to start fresh and ultimately find myself. I spent the summer of my senior year anxiously awaiting the day I had to leave Miami and move to another state to start school. As the date got closer and closer I was filled with more dread than excitement. It was so strange because everyone around me was so excited to move away and go to college and start their independent lives and I did NOT feel the same. When we left Miami to make the big move I was terrified. The morning of move in day I had a major breakdown and told my parents that I felt like I was making the biggest mistake of my life and I didn't want to move away and be alone. I still felt like an outcast because all of my friends were practically celebrating their "moving to college" transition and I had already convinced myself that this was not for me.

The first week of college was very strange. It kind of felt like I was at a summer camp because we were playing all of these ice-breaker and getting to know each other games. It was very overwhelming and fast paced. As things started to settle down and I was getting into a routine it became easier, but I was very homesick. Not to mention, my boyfriend at the time also decided it was a great time to end our relationship so I had to deal with that to. Talking about it now is very easy because it feels like lifetimes ago, but at the time I remember I was devastated. I didn't have many friends, I felt alone, and I had just been dumped. Recipe for disaster? I think yes. However, I pushed through and overcame my heartbreak and made some amazing friends meanwhile. 

Now as a rising junior in college I feel like I've pretty much figured it out. I know how college works and I've gone through practically everything you can face in college in a span of 2 years. 

1. It's okay to change your mind: I was on the pre med track my freshman year but I quickly realized that it wasn't for me. 

2. Use rate my professor: This is everything. It can make or break your experience in a class and determine your GPA! Try to take classes with highly rated teachers and teachers that your friends have had good experiences with. 

3. Less is more when decorating your dorm: Dorm rooms are small. Having too many items in your room will only make it look smaller and messier. Trust me on this! Have a few staple pieces that you want to be the main focal point, but keep it minimal. 

4. Put yourself out there: College is a time to step out of your comfort zone! Everyone is in the same boat that you're in. People just want to feel secure, make good impressions, and build a strong relationships just like you. 

5. Take care of yourself: I cannot stress this enough. Mental, physical, and emotional health are all of upmost importance. It can be easy to lose yourself sometimes in college, but always make sure to do what's best for you. 

6. Make a routine and stick to it: It can be easy to spend weeks at a time in sweat pants because no one can hold you accountable. Putting some effort in how you look will make you feel so much better. Try not to get lazy with yourself. 

7. Don't compare yourself to others: This can be very difficult because naturally college is a competitive environment. It is very easy to get caught up in other people's success and feel shitty about yourself, but the only thing that does is hurt you. You have to focus on yourself, set your own goals, and strive for things YOU want. 

8. Balance: Go out and have fun, these are the memories that you will have forever. However, do not forget why you're at school and miss class because of a nasty hangover. 

9. Friends come and go: It's normal. People are also figuring out who they are in college and will change. That's okay, you'll find your people. 

10. Keep in touch: Send a text to your friends from high school. They will appreciate it so much and you will too when you hear from them every once in a while.