Hello everyone, my name is Emma Winn, Class of 2024, and I’m from League City, Tx. I’m pursuing a degree in biology with a minor in chemistry. I am also on our school’s golf team, as well as a member of our sustainability club.
I’m currently staying on campus for the summer, which means I am able to really take advantage of our beautiful campus. One of my favorite things to do recently has been to get a book and my blanket, go out to the sliding hill and just take some time to myself to enjoy a nice book and relax. When I’m not out reading in a field, you’ll probably find me in Green Village with my friends. We’ve been having a lot of “family” dinners recently, where we’ll all help make a big dinner, then spend roughly 30 minutes just trying to pick out a movie to watch while we eat, then watching a couple till it’s time to head off to bed. I’m so happy I was able to come to Sweet Briar with an open mind and found such a good group of friends through this community.
As someone who understands the stress of getting ready to leave for college for the first time, here’s some advice for incoming students:
- Be open to trying new things out of your comfort zone. We have so many amazing opportunities here on campus, so take advantage of that. For example, I used to be absolutely terrified of bees, I wanted nothing to do with them. Then I came to campus, and the more I learned about them with biology professor Linda Fink, and through a good friend of mine and head student beekeeper, Annika Kuleba ’22, I was able to get hands-on experience with them and learn how important they really are for our campus. I even got to catch my first swarm with Annika this past semester in the apiary!
- Ask for help. This time of your life is stressful and overwhelming. I’ve been there, so please don’t be scared to reach out and let someone know when you’re struggling. We have so many people and resources here on campus to help with whatever you need. If you’re struggling in a class, we have the Academic Resource Center for free tutoring sessions, and you can always talk with your professors. They are here to help you learn, so let them know if you don’t fully understand something. You can also talk to someone with Horizon Behavioral Health at our health clinic if you are struggling with other issues you may not feel comfortable talking about to a friend.
- You don’t need to bring all of the shoes you’re planning to bring! I’m sure you think you’ll wear all of them, but believe me, you will not. I basically wore slides the entire year, and when it got cold, I just threw some socks on with my slides and called it a day!
I hope y’all were able to learn a little bit about me and my journey here at Sweet Briar, but if you have any questions, or just need someone to talk to going through this whole college process, please feel free to reach out.
– Emma Winn ’24
My name is Erin Bell and I am from Glocester, R.I. I am a proud Vixen and a junior at Sweet Briar. As an engineering major, I spend a lot of time studying and hanging out with my friends in Reid Pitt, a popular common area in the Reid dorm. I am a big fan of literature and running, and there is no better place, in my opinion, to do both than at Sweet Briar. With our beautiful and spacious campus, we have over 19 miles of beautiful trails to run. With our historical architecture and green lawns, there is no shortage of places to lay out a blanket and read (and pretend you’re in a Jane Austen novel like I do) on nice days.
Going to college is exciting but can also be filled with anxiety as you prepare to move on to a whole new chapter. I remember reading several blogs and articles on tips and advice on how to prepare for college.
Here are a few things I learned the summer before I left for school:
- Baby steps. I am sure I am not alone when I say that I can get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of choices and tasks I have to do some days. Breaking things down into baby steps often helps. Instead of trying to do everything in one day, prioritize and then start to tackle those tasks.
- Stay Organized. As I mentioned before, lists are my best friends. There is a lot to do before leaving for college. Packing, buying supplies for your dorm or classes and planning to move in. Making a list of what you need to pack or buy as well as trip planning can be a big help when it comes to moving and settling in.
- Be strategic. You want your dorm room to be as comfy and cozy as possible, and you’ll also want to bring the necessary hygiene products and clothes. This means packing strategically with clothes proper for the weather (check the weather forecast and feel free to ask admissions). It also means bringing things that will help make your dorm your own, like rugs and pictures.
- Balance. Balance is key in both college and in your personal life, so make sure you are taking care of yourself and spending time with the people you love, doing things that you love.
- Have fun! Going to college is supposed to be a fun experience! Make sure to enjoy yourself and have fun. Get excited about everything ahead of you!
I hope these tips and tricks help you as you prepare to make the transition into college, and I hope to see you on campus soon.
– Erin Bell Nelson ’23