University of Notre Dame
University of Notre Dame


Hansel Weihs

Inform yourself early about all of the opportunities available to you. Make use of the First-Year-of-Studies offices in the Coleman-Morse center to be a more informed First-Year student. There might be an FYS course or two that is especially appealing to you. In fact, I signed up for four FYS courses throughout my first year. They are a perfect way to prepare to think more like a college student. Many of them also feel relevant because they usually address contemporary issues.

One of the most important things that you need to do is to start building relationships not only with other students, but also with faculty. This means going to office hours and talking to your professors, even if at first you want to ease yourself into familiarity by just reviewing your work with the professor. I had very rewarding experiences by getting to know some of my professors outside of the classroom. You never know if that professor is working on a project that perfectly matches your interests, or if they can help guide you to resources that you would most benefit from.

Really take some time to sit and reflect upon your interests. Find ways to satisfy your interests with all of the resources that are available at Notre Dame, whether through interesting courses or clubs. College is a period of personal development, and it would be best to use that period to know yourself more. Be active in your pursuit of education.

Do not let yourself lose track of your ultimate goals. If you do not really have well-defined goals yet, you still need to dedicate a good portion of your time thinking about what you might like to achieve in your college experience at Notre Dame. You can never think too early about your goals.