PS(I LOVE)U: VALLEY’s Guide to Making the Most of State

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Penn State can be intimidating as an incoming freshman, or even, let’s be honest, as a sophomore or junior. University Park has tens of thousands of students, a massive campus and more opportunities than you can imagine. Before getting too anxious about all the possibilities, VALLEY recommends taking a deep breath and reminding yourself why you chose Penn State: the resources, the community and the feeling you felt touring the campus for the first time. Here are VALLEY’s top three tips for navigating your Penn State experience.

Don™t Let Anything Limit You
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Take a chance on yourself so that others take that same chance. With so many opportunities available to you, VALLEY advises taking the initiative to put yourself out there as you’re your own best advocate, so fight for what you want, and don’t let anyone tell you you can’t get it. Never say no to an opportunity, and never say no to broadening your Penn State network. Whether that’s a networking opportunity,an audition or an interview, put forward your best effort and go for it. It could lead to an unforgettable experience or the most memorable part of your time at Penn State.

Explore Everything Available & Take Advantage of Every Experience
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Penn State offers so many unique opportunities for both personal and professional growth, so take opportunities as they come to you, and explore them fully. Read the emails you get from advising, attend events and speaker series the college presents, apply to internships, even the ones you may think you’re under-qualified for,and take as many classes as you can. Explore minors, undergraduate certificates and even consider completing a double major. Soak it all in, and learn as much as you possibly can during your four years here at University Park.

The classroom isn’t the only place you can learn,go to the involvement fair and talk to everyone you see. You’ll never know who you’ll talk to or what club or organization will spark your interest. That being said, join and get involved with organizations and activities on campus on every level! They give you a unique opportunity to work with people who are equally as passionate about things as you are. Whether that means volunteering on a THON committee, writing for a student publication, joining Greek life or participating in a club sport, organizations give you the opportunity to engage with your fellow students, become inspired, explore a creative outlet and make Penn State a home. Give it your all and stick with it too! You never know where you could end up or what relationships you™ll build while involved in an organization.

No matter what you do, truly take advantage of every opportunity you seek out or come across, and find ways to make the most of them.

Focus on Your Studies, But Also on Your Relationships
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Even outside of the organizations that you join, you™ll continue to meet so many people with differing experiences and passions that allow you that well-rounded collegiate experience. Penn State is a large community, a large family even and everyone loves it so much. While that love is amplified at sporting events, like football games where you’re surrounded by tens of thousands of people who feel the same way, it’s true wherever you go. Take advantage of that! You already have something in common with everyone you come across.

Learn as much as you can about everyone you meet, and when you find a friend, invest in your relationship. The bonds you build throughout college are unparalleled and unique, and you™ll be grateful for every moment spent together.

It™s also important to keep in mind that, while studies are important, and should definitelyremain a priority, building lifelong friendships with those around you is essential. It’s cliche, but VALLEY promises that you’ll later remember every moment with your friends and little about the meteorology quiz you’re stressing over as a freshman.

No matter what, VALLEY can’t stress enough how important it is to make the most out of your Penn State experience. You have the power to make it an amazing four years, so get out there and enjoy it! Make an effort to spread that love and community that makes Penn State a home, and pass on the happy memories you’re making now to those in the future. We are!


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