My first day of class to earn my MBA from Colorado State University is on Monday, so like many of you, I’m mentally preparing myself to go back to school while maintaining a full time job and a personal life. It’s hard to know how to be prepared and what will be expected, so like the first day of any new experience, it is intimidating, stressful, and occasionally frightening! Here are seven tips on getting rid of those first day jitters.
1. Breathe in – breathe out.My first bit of advice is to take a deep breath and relax. A few deep breaths and you’ll be feeling more relaxed, which makes you more confident.
2. Keep telling yourself – if they can do it, I can do it.Most everyone in your course will also be taking that class for the first time and they don’t know what to expect either. You are all in the same boat!
3. Ask your advisor any questions you have.They are here to help, so take advantage of their knowledge of the program. If you are unsure about the curriculum or have trouble accessing your materials, contact your advisor before your first day of class.
4. Like a Boyscout – be prepared.If you can, read the syllabus before your first day of class and read any of the sections of your textbooks that will be covered in that class session. The more prepared you are, the more knowledgeable you will feel, which will make you more confident.
5. Talk to those who understand.Before you begin your class, try to connect via email, LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter with a former student who can give you insight into the course and the degree or certificate program. If you are unable to get in touch with someone who has taken the course before, reach out via the same methods to find someone who will be in your class.
6. Get a good night’s sleep. A rested mind is a capable mind, so if you get a good night’s sleep before your first class you will feel more energized and excited for your course instead of worrying about falling asleep or not having a clear head during the lecture.
7. Think of it like a networking event.Regardless of whether your class is online or face-to-face, you will connect better with others in your class as well as the instructor if you follow some of the steps that you would if your course were a networking event. This will prove very helpful for projects and studying throughout your course.
Good luck to everyone who is taking classes this fall. Does anyone else have tips to share on how to make the first day a great day?