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What are some tips for first years?

Updated: Feb 16, 2021

Starting at Concordia might seem daunting, but there are lots of tips and resources that you can incorporate to ease the process and have fun during your university years. Here are some!

1. Get involved in student life! You can join clubs or associations (like MASSA). Your time in university should be memorable, and you could be missing out if all you do is go to school and come back home. Studying is important, but don’t forget to have fun!

2. Attend events, whether they are social or academic. You can check out MASSA's upcoming events here!

🤝 Networking events will help you develop communication skills, expand your network and ease you into to professional world. It might be a big step out of your comfort zone, but it’s definitely a big step into your professional career. 📚 Academic events will make you learn new things outside of your usual field. They might even open new possibilities for you to consider! 🎉 Social events will allow you meet new people, make new friends and meaningful connections, and make the most out of university life. Your fellow students are a great resource to learn from, since they already have first-hand experience at Concordia.

3. Talk to your classmates! Chances are they share the same struggles as you. One easy way to chat with classmates is to find or create a Discord server for your class. Don’t hesitate to make new friends and acquaintances — university is a new beginning!

4. Stay organized, and learn to prioritize some tasks over others. This will help you keep up with deadlines and stay efficient when you study. If you fall behind in your lectures, schedule a few days to catch up ASAP because it will be much harder to catch up during midterms are finals. Check out the MASSA Podcast episode about how to stay organized here!

5. Look for internships, even if you are not in a co-op program. Internships give you valuable first-hand experience, which is something you can’t learn in class. Finding internships can be tricky, especially for first years, but MASSA can help! We host several networking events, including our Wine & Cheese, throughout the year. Also, don't forget to check out MASSA's internship listings!

6. Develop a strategy for studying, if you don’t already have one. The step from CEGEP or high school to university is a huge one, and fine-tuning your study habits is crucial. Practice and study regularly, take notes in class, plan your study sessions ahead of time — with a little practice, you'll find what works best for you.

7. Make time for yourself. Yes, university is about studying and preparing for a career, but taking time to relax and do things for yourself is very important. Studying all the time leads to burnout, and you'll need time to cool off. Regularly take time for yourself to engage in your hobbies and activities such as working out, reading, hanging out with friends, watching movies or TV shows, going for a walk, or simply relaxing. Remember, a healthy brain is always more efficient.


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