Ah, August, how I’ve missed you. How I’ve missed this month of fall colors everywhere you look, eau de Pumpkin Spice everywhere you sniff, and…an entire new Freshman class, shaking like fall leaves with fear and eager anticipation of everything that their first year at college has to offer? Oh, I remember those days well (hey, it was NOT that long ago, alright?). I spent many days roaming the hallowed halls of my chosen university, so eager to do well and set myself on the path to success, entirely uncertain at the tender age of 18, how to achieve that lofty goal.
And so, to ease our newest Freshman class into what could prove to be the greatest adventure of their lives, the #MuslimGirlClique offered up three key pieces of advice to guarantee a fulfilling first year of university:
1. Failure Is Your Friend
Don’t be scared to fail. I know it sounds easier said than done, but learning to deal with failure is such a vital life skill, and it took me far too long to learn that. It took me far too long to realize that failure isn’t something I should fear, but rather, it’s something that will help me grow. It offers the opportunity to learn the skill of re-routing, and re-adjusting—both vital for success in all that we do. I was always scared to fail because I was worried about my GPA, but not a single employer has asked me for my GPA since I graduated.
On top of that, whatever you do, do NOT be afraid to reach out for help whenever you need it, even if it’s just because you don’t know how to process what you’re feeling. Most academic institutions have mental health counselors to help students manage the momentous amount of stress we face, so take advantage of that—there’s no shame in it. Help’s there for a reason!
-Lana M. Waheed.
2. Take the Initiative
3. Try It All
Try everything you can! I know it’s what a lot of people say, but I honestly met some of my best friends by trying new things or going to events that I was interested in. For instance, if you want to meet more Muslims, try the MSA. If you’re into Harry Potter or gaming, join the respective clubs!
My college actually has an anime club that has a fancy name, “The Society for Creative Endeavors.” When they first started, they didn’t get any funding, but being a part of this club has been such a happy experience for me!