A big welcome to all freshmen entering their first year at Nanyang Polytechnic! Choosing a polytechnic pathway will see some very different and new changes in your life. The “freedom” that you will have in Poly may also lead you to a false sense of security, which will change when you are suddenly besieged with due dates. So to avoid these unpleasant surprises, here are 7 common mistakes made by freshmen and how to avoid them.
Not attending Freshmen Orientation
Before lessons begin, every School in NYP will have its very own Freshmen Orientation organised by the respective student committees. Although attending the orientation is compulsory, some freshmen still do not attend it. Apart from getting to know your course mates better, the orientation also introduces you to campus life and its facilities. You certainly do not want to be lost or late for your first lesson. Even if you are the shy or introverted type, understand that attending Freshmen Orientation does no harm. So do join in.
Not mingling around during orientation
Not attending Club Crawl
Not preparing material needed for school early
Not finishing tutorial assignments
Bad time management
It is very easy for freshmen to forget time management due to the new found “freedom” they have in Poly. Assignment due next month? Lots of time? This can be disastrous when you find yourself having too many assignments due at the same time, and you have barely begun doing them.
To prevent this, you need to know that while it is important to have a balanced lifestyle in Poly, do not chew off more than what you can bite. For example, don’t sign up for too many events and always remember to complete your important and urgent work first. Plan your schedule carefully.
Not organizing academic materials
This is a very common mistake among freshmen - not organizing notes or tutorial materials well. In NYP, semestral exam topics can be found in most of the notes, and certain modules even test practical knowledge on paper. Most freshmen usually throw their lab and tutorials sheets when they are done. When exams are just around the corner, they will be frantically searching for these sheets to study.
To prevent this, get assorted files for every module and file the notes and sheets accordingly. When exams are around the corner, at least everything is easily retrievable.
Remember that balance is the key in a fulfilling and vibrant Poly life. Your Orientation Group Leaders and Personal Mentors will be here to guide you, so do not hesitate to approach any of them for help.
By Christopher Teo Yu Yuan, Diploma in Medicinal Chemistry
A smile is a curve that sets things straight.
Never be afraid to try. Even if we fail, there is no better way to live. Continue to pursue to what you truly love to do. Christopher is living life seeking thrills and hopes to be able to use science to save lives and bring hope to other people.