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students group in computer lab classroomCollege is getting closer. You’re excited, you’re nervous and a part of you is probably downright scared. Here are some tips for conquering the most common fears faced by students graduating from high school and heading to college:

I’ll be lonely. There are many opportunities to make friends at colleges throughout the country. Joining clubs, student organizations and being active in your classes and in your dorm can help you meet other students. If your schedule permits, an on-campus job can be another great way to make friends your first year.

The classes will be difficult. Your academic life in college will be more rigorous than when you were in high school, but there are plenty of resources to help you succeed, such as study groups. Make school your priority and work hard, and you’ll increase the odds of your success.

I’m going to be really homesick for my friends, family, boyfriend, girlfriend, etc., back home. The feeling is inevitable. Change is hard. But it will get easier if you get involved on campus. Stay connected with your loved ones back home through phone calls and social media, but remember that college is all about new beginnings, new friends and new ideas.

I’m going to gain a lot of weight. You’ve heard of the “Freshman 15”. That’s the amount of weight gain by young adults during their first year of college. It’s also referred to as the “Freshman 10.” The good news is that studies show that most college freshman don’t appear to actually gain that much weight in just one year. Research shows average weight gain by first-year college students is more in the 2- to 5-pound range. Many don’t gain any weight at all. The bad news? Over four or five years of college, a 10- to 15-pound weight gain is not uncommon. Make sure you’re eating healthy and getting enough exercise.

I’m going to get a bad roommate. Your roommate may not become your best friend, but chances are, you’ll get along fine. Give it several weeks. Set ground rules. Talk out your differences. If you still don’t get along, talk to the appropriate person in your dorm room and make a request to switch when it’s permitted.

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