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I’m Here – Now What?

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Welcome to college; the most terrifyingly exciting time you have yet to encounter. Don’t let the towers of academia deceive you, this is the jungle and it’s time to test your survival skills. Lucky for you, this article has some handy tips to help you navigate the harsh terrain and maybe even get you crowned queen or king of the jungle.

The trick to surviving college is to first understand the truth of what college actually is. On the surface it’s studying, going to class, stressing out about finals, and hopefully graduating and getting a job with a good salary; but underneath this
clich lies the truth; that college is about self discovery and whether you have what it takes to survive in the real world. This isn’t your parent’s house or high school; no one is here to hold your hand and give you gentle encouragement to step outside of your comfort zone; you have to do it on your own and begin your transition from child to young adult. The first nugget of information I can offer is to make friends and develop a support group. It can at times be hard for new students to meet people at college because they have been programmed from high school to think that certain people might not accept you; but this isn’t high school anymore and all the cool kids are just as lame and shy as you are. The best way to make friends on campus is to join a club you find interesting, and Sac State offers a plethora of different kinds of clubs. If you are interested in strictly the social aspect of clubs, the CSUS Snowclub has the most members and throws the most insane events and parties (check out 80’s Skate Night). Salsa Loca is another great club where you get paired up with members of the opposite sex and learn to dance like Antonio Banderas, switching partners every few minutes.

If academics is your thing, then there are plenty of academic clubs, as well as cultural and political clubs. Every club throws special events, usually full of fun, cool people, and food. Another great place to meet people or hang out with your new friends is at ASI and UNiQUE campus events. These on-campus events engage, entertain, and inform students about what is happening on and with their campus. Both groups have volunteer programs that allow you to be part of the events, meet people, and get some cool prizes and experience.

Although campus always has something going on and there are constantly people getting involved in clubs and events; you’d be missing out on one of the greatest things CSUS has to offer, its location.

Literally minutes from the city and the river,

Sac State affords you the opportunity to hang out at the beach or go into the city to explore and have some fun. The key to getting around Sacramento is to learn and love the light rail and know the routes. If you’re new, your best bet is to get off at 16th and J and walk to 20th and J to hit the midtown scene of Sacramento. Between J and R streets and 16th through 29th street there are a variety of food, entertainment,bars, and people-watching experiences. K and J streets cater to an older crowd with their fun bars, nightclubs, great food, art galleries, and really interesting shops.
Between L and N streets are the classier parts of midtown, with fancy restaurants and more upscale lounges.
Streets P through Q have some of the best dive bars and strange places in the city, as well as some of the best happy hours this side of the Mississippi; this is the place to be if you are 21+. There is also historic old town, which has awesome candy shops and costume stores, the fabulous 40’s, which boasts some of the most expensive and beautiful houses and parks, and the Capitol that has awesome architecture and history. Don’t forget your OneCard in these places, as it offers discounts on all sorts of goodies around town.

College is an exciting and terrifying experience at first; your best hope of survival is to find a good support group of friends and occupy your free time going to events and getting involved on and around campus. Follow these helpful tips and you’ll make some great friends, learn some awesome skills for your professional resume, and achieve that ultimate college experience.

By Dan Crippen

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