Advice for Incoming
College Students:
A Grinnell Planpoll

Ten Most Recent Entries

19 August 2006 at 1:47 PM, entry #146

Category: Money

If you can save money, start a Roth IRA. Traditional IRAs are tax-exempt on the front end and Roth IRAs on the back end, so young people are better off with the Roth.

19 August 2006 at 1:46 PM, entry #145

Category: Physical and mental health

Life is like looking at a cabbage through a kalidescope. you don't know how now, will by the end of college!!!!

19 August 2006 at 1:45 PM, entry #144

Category: Grinnell the place

Visit your friends at other colleges some time your first year. It will likely make you love Grinnell, no matter how much you thought you were indifferent.

19 August 2006 at 1:45 PM, entry #143

Category: Physical and mental health

o not go home for the whole summer after college. It will be pure hell. YOu do not need another summer at home just to teach you that you don't want to work at a menial job your whole life. If your parents disapprove (mine did) get an intership, research position, or work anyway--either in Grinnell or some other city.

19 August 2006 at 1:44 PM, entry #142

Category: Academics

Be assertive about getting into classes that are difficult to get into. Visit the professors who teach them an explain your interest (or at least write them an e-mail if you're too afraid of rejection to talk to them in person).

19 August 2006 at 1:43 PM, entry #141

Category: Academics

Don't let fear keep you from taking a class. Now that I graduated, I regret being too afraid to take more math/science. In retrospect, even if I definitely would not get an A, that would have been okay. It would not have affected my future career and graduate school opportunities to have another B or C or two, and I would have had more choices.

19 August 2006 at 1:43 PM, entry #140

Category: Academics

Use your professors' office hours!

19 August 2006 at 1:42 PM, entry #139

Category: Social life

Some of the very best friends I made at Grinnell were professors/staff. While it wouldn't be applicable to all professors or work for all students, you shouldn't be too frightened to interact on a more human level with people other than your fellow students. This was probably one of the most significant choices I made while at Grinnell, and I'm endlessly thankful that I did so.

19 August 2006 at 1:41 PM, entry #138

Category: Academics

Don't be scared of the independent major. If there is something you want to do but would have a difficult time doing within the confines of an already-existing major, consider making your own.

19 August 2006 at 1:41 PM, entry #137

Category: Academics

One thing I wish I had been told/thought about is to be more pragmatic and thoughtful in my course selection. If I had been more thoughtful about my post-Grinnell plans, I think I would have been far more well-rounded and a better candidate for grad school. I ended up wasting a lot of classes my first two years, and I had to take all major requirements my last two years. By the time I was a junior and I had given some thought to the non-major courses that would have been good for me, I didn't have room left to take them.

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