Five tips on playing it smart as a college student

College just happens to be one of the last socially irresponsible times of your life to complete before becoming the ‘mature adult’ your parents always hoped for. 

The former high school diploma now gathering dust upon your other meaningless papers, no longer holds stature. From here on, it all changes. The things you do, the people you meet, and the bed you make all matters so much more than the last twelve years of your life. 

A few of the unspoken secrets we hold as a student led community are all too closely related to our success.  After all, we’re just here trying to get another shiny piece of paper saying we made it. 

But that’s just it: it’s not about the degree, it’s about the accrued knowledge we got in and outside of the classroom that make us so successful. These are my five basic rules to live by, reinforcing what it truly means to be a ‘successful’ college student. 

Rule number one: Only give into to peer pressure when you know you’re going to be eating Top Ramen for the next four months. 

First you have to take into the fact that we as students run on three main fuel sources; food, alcohol, and hormones. When you start mixing the substantial amount of alcohol (obviously influenced by crazy roommates) with the constant lack of nutrition and raging hormones, you get what I call a ‘daily action’. 

Rule number two: Show commitment to your education and to being an adult by not letting the party scene consume your life. 

This is my third year at Sonoma State and I learned quickly what I could and could not do while living this college lifestyle. In no way am I condoning the consumption of alcohol, but if you can’t help yourself after sitting in that five hour lecture hall on Thursday night, just keep your actions responsible and get a sober driver. 

Rule number three: Use protection. Just because she’s on the pill or he has a vasectomy does not mean you can’t contract a sexually transmitted disease. This should be common sense.

Booze plus hormones equals hook ups.  Yeah, hook ups. You all know what I’m talking about, even the parents who are reading this. But lately there have been too many stories brought to my attention about people getting an STD after ‘regret sex’.  

Rule number four: You will always have the capability to improve your own college experience with the many wild influences of your favorite college movies! 

You created the memory of you setting foot in that first college party and you knew the rest of your college career has the potential to become the most legendary and epic time in your life. 

It’s up to you to make the best of your experience in such a short amount of time. 

Rule number five: Take responsibility for your actions and have fun while doing so.

I’ve learned from plenty of my mistakes, as I’m sure a majority of my fellow college students have learned from theirs. Ultimately at the end of the day getting through our real life experiences is what makes us as college students so much more successful. 

For those of you who are in denial out there refusing to be compared to your average college attendee, remember this, we’re all out here shooting for the same shot at success. 

If anyone ever tells you that “You have to fake it till you make it,” prove them wrong. The way I look at it is nobody can tell you who to be, so just be you and keep it real.

 But if you’re one of the many students out there that don’t have a clue who you are, discover your potential and live through your own experiences here at SSU. You might just end up surprising yourself.

Real success comes to those who are willing to grow. But initially it’s up to you whether you’re going to show Sonoma State, your parents, even the world, what you’re really made of.