I’m back with part 2! Just to refresh your memory, I’m answering some questions from a Thought Catalogue article about college life and what it is like. It isn’t an all-inclusive list, but I hope that it will help you transition from being nervous to excited for that awesome-ness that is college! Feel free to ask any questions that weren’t covered on the list.
13. Will I get homesick? Will I miss my mum doing almost everything for me and gain a new-found appreciation of her as an everyday Superwoman? Will I miss my cats coming and meowing at me every time I try and do something productive? Will other people be homesick too?
The Tufts unofficial mascot is Napoleon the cat (he lives between Tufts and Davis) so you can hang out with him if you miss your cat. People do get homesick sometimes. I’ve avoided it by keeping busy and making my friends here a second family. On the flip side, you will probably get homesick for Tufts during winter break too.
14. Am I going to manage to stay in contact with my friends from back home, or will we just slowly and surely drift apart until I’m living inside that fucking Gotye song about somebody that I used to know? Is it worth the effort, or are my endeavours doomed from the get-go?
It’s worth the effort, but just know that it is harder (not impossible) to maintain friendship while you are far apart. I keep in contact with friends from high school, but definitely not all of them.
15. This is one specifically for the fellow Brits — is it still legal to watch television on BBC iPlayer and 4oD if I don’t have a TV license? How would you even enforce that? I just don’t want to be arrested for piracy, okay.
16. Is there a diplomatic way to tell people to be quieter while boning their significant others, or do I just have to suck it up/sound like a dick?
I cannot think of a diplomatic way to handle that. You’re creative, I’m sure you’ll figure it out.
17. Am I going to be able to budget well enough to do things like buy not-tested-on-animals shampoo and retain my long-running vegetarianism, or will I just have to accept that student life involves diminished ethics and greasy kebabs at 3am?
3am is time for Anna’s Taqueria, not kebabs. The unlimited meal plan will save you in terms of food, and there are a million and one vegetarian/vegan options. Also, learn how to shop on sale.
18. I imagine college is nothing like any of the movies or TV shows I’ve seen. Is there an exception to this, or are two seasons of Fresh Meat going to have to suffice?
Go into it without a bunch of expectations based on TV shows. Life is never like movies. Remember, 33 year olds play 18 year olds in movies.
19. Is there a blanket guide to dealing with professors, or do I have to suss it out on a case-by-case basis?
Go to office hours and don’t be afraid of them. Professors are typically really interesting. Don’t be intimidated by their prestige. More than likely, they want students to go visit them. I once went to office hours with a friend of mine even though we didn’t need any help in the class. We just spent an hour chatting about her research.
20. Will the older students be nice to me?
Probably. If you see me, I’ll be nice to you! One of my best friends is an older student who lived on my hall freshman year. It was awesome because he had already been through his freshman year and could really help me navigate Tufts, specifically, the pre-health part of Tufts. Older students can be super helpful for figuring everything out once you are on campus.
21. How many times am I allowed to screw up friendships/relationships/essays before people expect me to work out what I’m doing?
There isn’t really a set numerical answer to this. Just try your best. That being said, there will always be academic and emotional support for you on campus, should you need it.
22. Does anyone really know what they’re doing?
Nope. That’s the fun part! It’s four years of trial and error. Experiential learning, YAY!!!
23. What if I don’t make any friends?
Between residential life programming, small discussion based classes, and orientation, you will most likely make some friends. Just don’t be afraid to talk to random people. Everyone is desperate to make friends freshman year, so it makes the process a lot easier.
24. What if I make the wrong friends?
Lots of people here have groups of friends all over the place. There are TDC friends, academic friends, friends from tour guiding, whatever. It is not likely that you will consider every group of friends as “the wrong friends.”
25. What if I picked the wrong university?
Right now, you are reading the admissions blog. You explore the website. Maybe you visited the school and talked to random students. Just try to get a feel for the school. If you are doing that, your chance of picking the wrong school decreases. Deep breath. Say it with me: it will all work out.