Unsolicited Senior Advice: Starting the year off right

Ryan Lynch’s weekly column tackles not messing up in college like he did. This week: the first few weeks of classes.


Ryan Lynch. Photo courtesy of Mohammed F. Emran

Ryan Lynch, Business Manager

Everyone’s been there. Your alarm goes off, but you’ve already snoozed it twice and now you’re late to class. 

And whether you commute to FAU or live on campus, you experience this every semester.

As someone who has been late to both a midterm and a final, I’ve messed up enough to know better. While you’re struggling to navigate the first part of the year, here’s my advice.

Save your absences

I know what you’re thinking right now: “Ryan, I’m not stupid. I won’t do this.”

Tell me that after you skip every class in the first two months of school to go to the beach or sleep in. I’ve seen countless classmates waste their absences for reasons they’ll ultimately regret.

And if you avoid skipping at the start, you can keep them for when you get burnt out at the end of the semester.

On top of this, you won’t have to kick yourself for losing points from your class grade. You know, the same one you pay thousands of dollars for.

Wake up earlier

If you live on campus: Stop telling yourself you’re going to wake up right before class starts and make it on time, because you’re not.

That extra time lets you prepare and take care of all the things you need to do before class. No more running out the door smelling like ass with some funky looking hair.

Throughout my freshman year, I spent far too much time sprinting down the Breezeway trying to get to class in time for a quiz. Not only did I look like a dumbass, I would barely make it on time and usually do poorly because I was stressed and out of breath.

And if you really struggle with waking up, setting an earlier alarm will give you time to hit the snooze button.

Use your time right

You have too many assignments and not a lot of time, but you still want to hang out with your friends. What do you do?

You manage your time, plain and simple.

Find a way to organize what you’re doing. Either use a planner, your phone’s reminder app, a notebook, anything that helps keep track of your work schedule.

I’ve spent too many nights working late and still not getting everything done. Trust me, your future self will thank you for prioritizing your work early on in your college career.

If you do that, you spend less time chasing deadlines and more time relaxing. Plus, you create a useful habit that can last beyond college and help with whatever field you’re pursuing.

Ryan Lynch is the business manager of the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @RyanLynchwriter.