Lessons from a 2020

This is my first writing of the new year— I know, I’ve been slacking— and things for me here at the University of Dayton have seen quite a bit of change. For starters, I was hired as a resident assistant with Housing and Residence Life in a first-year residence hall. Talk about culture shock. One of my many jobs as an RA is to hold what are known as check-in chats, which are just one on one conversations with residents about how things are going for them, what goals they have, etc. This week I’ll be doing something a little different: instead of talking about things from my perspective, we’ll talk instead about lessons the first semester has taught a couple members of the class of 2020. 


One thing that came up over and over again was how crazy it was coming into all of this newfound freedom in their first semester away from home— and the pros and cons of that freedom. The pros? The ability to do whatever you want, go wherever you want, and eat whatever you want. The Cons? Remembering at the end of the day that sleep is a necessity and so is studying. 

Time Management and College

There’s only so many hours in the day, and something that came up time and time again was the goal of managing time better in the spring semester. The first semester of your first year is a crazy time to be sure— you’re constantly bombarded with endless engagement opportunities, the opportunity to join over +240 student student organizations, and countless other possible additions to your day. On top of all of that, you’re a full time college student! With all of that going on, it’s easy to see why so many first-year students can find themselves falling behind in certain areas.

Get more Sleep 

There’s not too much to elaborate on this one with, but was probably the most common response. 

Getting More Involved

If you haven’t seen me mention it before, I believe the key to happiness at the University of Dayton— or any college, for that matter— is involvement. Getting involved is the best way to meet new people, and when you’re starting out in a new school with +8,000 new friends that’s the best way to feel at home. I was happy to see that most of the happiest residents were those who were heavily involved in one way or another, whether it be intramural sports or a whole host of different clubs. 

Eat Better

Don’t get me wrong, pizza is delicious— and don’t even get me started on monster cookies. That being said, my residents have noticed the need to maybe eat a couple more salads a week. 


There you have it! A couple commons tips and goals from members of the class of 2020 after completing their first semester at the University of Dayton. 

Stay tuned in the coming weeks for my new videos featuring walkthroughs of first-year housing facilities! 

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