So: you’re starting your OKWU journey. 

Congratulations! It feels like it’s taken a long time to get here, doesn’t it? You survived high school, nailed your ACT or SAT, and picked OKWU – a great choice! Then you moved into the dorms, attended orientation, and toughed it out through your very first week of class. Now what? 

To help you make the most out of your first semester at OKWU, we’ve asked voices from across campus to give you their absolute best advice for new Eagles. Check it out! It’s going to be a great year.

1. Talk to your professors. 
  • “We really do enjoy getting to know you, and we want to help you. It can be intimidating to approach someone new, especially if you’re asking them for help. If you stop by your professor’s office hours early in the semester and get to know them, it will be much easier to go to them when you need help later in the semester.” – Kelly Chisum, Instructor of Design 
  • “Your professors care about you a lot, so talk to them outside of class. So many opportunities can arise when you put yourself out there and step out of your comfort zone.” – Megan Young, Director of Residential Life
2. Get involved with Campus activities. 
  • “I would encourage every student to get involved on campus. Sounds simple, but a lot of college students struggle with getting out of their dorm room. College is a change in scenery, in location, and demographic. All of that can be overwhelming and scary, but it provides the opportunity to build a network of people that you will know for the rest of your life. 75% of college is showing up and being present. If you stay in your dorm room, you are not allowing that to happen. Yes, college is about getting a good education, but you’re also spending years here – take advantage of the community that you are a part of.” – Jake Feickert, Admissions Counselor 
3. Try New Things.
  • “When I was a freshman in college, my dad recommended that I try one new thing per semester. It can be overwhelming to try to choose what to be involved in when you’re new to a school. On the other hand, it can be easy to get stuck in a rut when you’ve been at a school for a while. If you try one new thing – a club, a volunteer opportunity, a hobby, a class –per semester, it will help you become involved in campus life, meet new people, explore your giftings, and stay engaged.” – Kelly Chisum
  • “Step out of your comfort zone and don’t stay in your room all day! Staying in will only add to any homesick feeling or loneliness. Try going to a weekend activity or go cheer on our Eagles at a home game. Or, try starting up a conversation with a random person in the dorm bathroom while getting ready in the morning! You will meet new people who might just become lifelong friends.” – Megan Young
4. Sleep! 
  • “Embrace the power of a good nap. Don’t sleep through class, but find a time to relax and rest.” – Emily Voelkers, Public Services Librarian
  • “Sleep. Prioritize getting good sleep at night. Schedule naps in between classes. Our students are often very hardworking and devote themselves to their schoolwork, athletics, and clubs. Sometimes, we also need a reminder to take care of ourselves physically, spiritually, and emotionally.” – Kelly Chisum
5. Go to the library. 
  • “Go early in the semester and go often. We’re here to help you – plus, we’re really fun! Sometimes we even have snacks or puppies or dress up days.” – Emily Voelkers
6. Listen to Dr. Van Kuiken.
  • “My advice is five-fold: 1) Read the syllabus. 2) Be on time for class. 3) Sit in the front half of the classroom. 4) Smile and be friendly toward professors and classmates. 5) Visit Doc Lacy’s often.” – Dr. Jerome Van Kuiken, Dean of Ministry and Christian Thought
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