By Kyle Albert
Image courtesy of “Anwaar”
College can be an overwhelming experience, especially if you were homeschooled for years. Leaving the comforts of your own home for a new one feels like entering a whole new world. There will be challenges and bumps ahead, but there are gadgets, mobile applications, and simple tips to help you sail through the murky waters of the college ecosystem.
Smart Devices Are Handy
Nowadays, people can’t live without their mobile phones or tablets. Technology has become intertwined with our lives and you’ll need it to survive college. Smartphones are good investments since they allow you to make calls at home, and use it during your class. Aside from making calls, it can also help you track missing stuff and valuables. Mobile applications like Tile help track things via an electronic tag. By using the Verizon Wireless 4G LTE service, you can download, install, and use the app when needed. These devices and applications will benefit you, since you’ll always have to keep tabs on your things.
Calculators Are Still an In-Thing
Okay, most of already own smart devices and you may ask: why should you buy a calculator? Actually, most teachers, professors, and school proctors prohibit the use of these devices while in class. They’re afraid that their students will cheat during exams. Yes, graphing and scientific calculators may be an 80’s or 90’s thing, but they are still extremely helpful when solving complex graph analysis, math formulas, and problem-solving equations. Also, calculators nowadays have high-resolution, full-color backlit displays, and they have built-in USB ports that let you connect it to a laptop or desktop.
The Cloud Will Be Your New Friend
Most of us are already using cloud services for our personal needs. However, the cloud will be your friend, especially now you’re in college. Before, students had to wait for their professors to finish the class before asking them questions. Now, they can upload their questions and notes on the cloud, and teachers can answer their questions in immediately. Also, it’s much easier to organize group projects and work on them from the comfort of their dorms or apartments.
The USB Flash Drive is Still Your Friend
The technology may be “ancient” for some, but the USB flash drive is still as important as the calculator. It’s small, very portable, and it can fit right into your I.D lace or key chain. Save your term paper, photo project, lectures, notes, and presentation in it. Connect it to your school’s laptop, desktop, or a tablet to access it when needed. If you’re unable to connect to the Internet and retrieve your files from the cloud, always back-up important stuff on your hand flash drive. Most flash drives in the market today have storage spaces ranging from 2GB to 128GB. It’s small, relatively cheap, and really handy. You should always have one.
Care Packages Will Always Be Your Home, Away From Home
Just remember that technology isn’t everything. Being away from your family can lead to homesickness, and receiving a care packages will always paint a smile on your face. It’s really exciting to open these packages, which usually includes a personal memento from home, a recent edition of your town or city’s newspaper, or family snapshots. Some families would also include toiletries such as toothpaste, shampoo, soap, and disposable razor blades. Also, reading notes of encouragement and personal letters really helps boost your morale, especially when you’re feeling the blues from time to time.
College is another face in our lives and we must learn to embrace it. Never let fear of the unknown overwhelm you, instead, go out, explore, and find what’s beyond the ridge. Try to experience everything, both good and bad, and always learn from your weaknesses. Always remember to be unique; you will fit in, just give it time.
Kyle writes to express his opinions on a wide variety of topics including Takashi Murakami’s “superflat” art style and the eclectic sounds of Melody Prochet. Since he’s always in pursuit of things that interest him. He’s also following the trends in online education and home schooling.