10 Stupid Mistakes I Made My First Year of College

I want to start off by saying that I don't regret a single part of my undergraduate experience, because each one of those experiences led me to where I am today. Actually, one thing I will take back. I should have dumped my loser high school boyfriend the moment he tried to convince me he "needed to focus on himself." But besides that, totally sticking by all the stupid decisions I made!

Freshmen year is this awesome experience that everyone likes to glamorize. Yeah moving away from home is fun and you get to meet all thees new people, but there are also parts that no one warns you about. Probably because RA's are under contract to not talk about stuff like this, even though it's a total disservice to those of us who come in green eyed and ready to mess up.

Below you'll find the 10 mistakes I made my freshmen year in college, ranging from those that cost me money I still owe to this day to the type I like to tell stories about at parties today.

1. Chose too big of a meal plan.

Not sure if I was going through a second puberty when I chose my meal plan, but there's no explanation as to why I thought I needed to have three paid meals per day. Let's be honest, most of us won't be awake for breakfast most days. Save yourself a ton of money by picking a meal plan that fits your current needs.

2. Dated someone in my dorm hall.

Long story short I had just had my heart broken for the first time and I was on the rebound. So, I kinda, sorta, maybe dated a drug dealer. That wasn't the worst part. Our break up was terrible and I had to face him every day of freshmen year. Was it the end of the world? No. But it could have been avoided.

3. Slept with someone in my dorm hall.

Remember that drug dealer? Yeah I slept with him. Having to pass someone you dated was one thing, bringing by your new boyfriend to meet your door mates, including the guy who once saw you naked is another. There's so many boys in college, steer clear of the ones you share an address with.

Related Post: The 10 Most Effective Ways to Help You Study Last Minute

4. Paid little attention to what courses I registered for.

When registering for my first semester of classes no one told me anything besides the types of prerequisites expected of everyone. Do your research first so you don't end up taking the most difficult classes your first semester. You wanna give yourself time to get used to your new life and schedule.

5. Didn't join any campus organizations.

My secret goal freshmen year was to one day run for student body president. It never happened. I got caught up in doing the basic freshmen year things that made me reluctant to branch past my friensd for the first year. Don't do the same, join a group, make friends outside your roommates and remember that your first year sets the precedent for your college experience.

6. Spent too much money on textbooks.

If you were thinking about buying your textbooks from the bookstore then think again. With websites like Amazon and Chegg, there's no reason you need to pay full price for books. And for those of you who are serious about saving money each semester, check out my post on how to never spend a dime on college textbooks.

Related Post: How to Never Pay for College Textbooks Again

7. Didn't take advantage of all the free events.

For some dumb reason I didn't attend the homecoming events my freshmen year of college! Sure it didn't completely ruin my life, but you wanna soak up those moments while you still can. Nowadays I pay to get in everywhere, some places wont even give me the student discount! Attend everything you can, while you can!

8. Continued to date my high school not-so-sweetheart.

Unfortunately I didn't have many good friends during high school, at least not the kind that could tell me what a loser my boyfriend was. If you're in an on and off relationship like I was, do yourself one big favor and cut ties. I know it's hard, but trust me, after a few weeks you'll feel so much better. 

9. Didn't visit the study abroad office.

Junior and senior year I studied abroad and in our nation's capitol, where I now live(!), but I so wish I would have become part of the study abroad community starting my freshmen year. The people you meet there are unlike any other group on campus, plus there's the benefit about learning about studying abroad sooner rather than later.

Related Post:10 Reasons You Should Study Abroad While in College

10. Accepting too much in financial aid.

I'm gonna admit it, I had no idea what I was doing the first time I filed my FAFSA or accepted my grants and loans. If you're feeling the same way talk to a guidance counselor, reach out to the financial advisers in your new school or simply talk to other people who have been through this before.

Did you make any embarrassing mistakes your freshmen year of college? Please tell me I'm not the only one who ended my first year with a few unnecessary experiences!


  1. I never lived in college halls, so I had a bit of a different experience! I went straight into sharing a house with three friends and it was brilliant. However, in my second year, I did get a bit TOO close with some boys (I lived with all boys) and we ended up getting a bit...ahem, sexual. Kind of awkward having to see both of them every day! It's also a comfort thing though. I mean, they're always going to be there. Right? We just got way too comfortable with each other.

    But I pretty much made all these mistakes in my first year of uni! I didn't take advantage of the library as much as I should and I didn't get as 'involved' as I would have liked! I studied at two different campuses across my uni career and they were like night and day. The first one was the best because I had all my friends there. The second one, well, I had a hard time finding friends and I ended up just going to class and going home. Haha. Oh well. 23 more days and I don't have to think about undergrad ever again! Hooray!

    Great post! I think you just inspired me to write my own version! (If you don't mind, of course).

    1. I went to a uni in England for a year and I definitely did see a trend of housemates getting a lot closer to one another than is typical here in the US. But yayyyy for almost graduating! It's the best feeling to finally be done with constant papers and exams. And please go ahead and write your own version! I'd love a break for perfect posts to read the dumb things other people have done in college

  2. This is a great list - especially the meal plan & textbook tips. And glad you also included dating issues for all those girls who don't have a big sister

    1. I'm still kicking myself for that meal plan! And yes, I could have really benefitted from someone telling me how dumb it was to date a boy in my hall, but you live you learn. Now I just need to warn all incoming freshmen with my first year horror stories