Skip site navigation and jump to page content

The First Year of College

Although each student handles the transition to college life differently, most students face certain common challenges, especially during the first year. The following timeline provides a general summary of freshman-year experiences.

September

  • Saying goodbye to family, friends, and pets.
  • Feeling excitement and/or fear of new experiences.
  • Learning to live with someone new.

October

  • Feeling homesickness; managing long-distance relationships.
  • Figuring out class and time management.
  • Settling into a schedule.
  • Experiencing doubts about keeping up the pace.

November

  • Coping with academic realities — midterms, papers.
  • Developing friendships on campus.
  • Selecting classes for next quarter.
  • Going home for Thanksgiving — with different expectations of home.

December

  • Enduring finals week, when all academic work is due, and there is no slack time.
  • Dealing with questions about Christmas — making time for friends, family, gifts, traditions.
  • Reuniting at home with family and friends; having time away from SPU friends.
  • Enjoying time to sleep, and time to reflect on Autumn Quarter.

January

  • Reuniting with SPU friends.
  • Readjusting to SPU after Christmas Break.
  • Participating in Homecoming Weekend (where families are welcome).
  • Longing for sunshine. (“Will spring ever come?”)

February

  • Celebrating Valentine’s Day.
  • Registering for Spring Quarter.
  • Coping with midwinter blues.
  • Finding new ways to balance academics and social life.

March

  • Pushing to get it all done.
  • Taking finals and turning in papers on time.
  • Planning for Spring Break.

April

  • Starting a new quarter.
  • Planning for next year. (“What major will I choose? Where will I live?”)
  • “What will I do this summer?”

May

  • Choosing classes for next year.
  • Experiencing the beauty and wonder of springtime in Seattle.

June

  • Preparing for the end-of-the-year transitions.
  • Taking finals and turning in papers on time.
  • Saying good-byes and returning home.
Jenny Kim

Transfer Students:
Welcome Home!

What makes SPU what it is? The community. I attended another university for my first two quarters, but then transferred to SPU for Spring Quarter, and I felt so welcomed!

Jenny Kim
SPU Senior

Learn Some SPU Lingo

ASSPAssociated Students of Seattle Pacific (student government)

CISComputer and Information Systems: where to go with computer and network questions

Falcon: School mascot (The Falconstudent newspaper)

Gwinn: Campus dining hall

Martin SquarePaved, open area in the center of campus

Tiffany Loop (“The Loop”): Circular driveway and grassy area with big, beautiful trees just outside the SUB

close(X)