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10 Habits of Highly Effective Hawks

Duke Divinity School prospective student luncheonStudent leaders suggested the following tips for a successful college career:

To manage your time and work load…

  • Set aside a certain amount of time each week just for studying, and stick to it.
  • Use a calendar to schedule assignments, etc. on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.
  • Plan in advance for what will be due during the semester.
  • Follow the syllabus carefully; have each assignment done before the class it’s due.
  • Be aware of your own schedule; don’t be overly influenced by others.
  • Learn to say no.
  • Stay on top of things; don’t let work pile up on you.

To get the most out of your classes…

  • Don’t skip classes.
  • Get to your classes on time, every time.
  • Take good notes.
  • Pay attention during academic orientation.
  • Plan ample time for studying.
  • Get to know others in your class; study together; borrow notes.
  • Establish relationships with your professors; e-mail teachers; ask them for help.

To make the most of your studying…

  • Set aside time just for studying, but give yourself time to relax.
  • Remember that you’re paying for school…don’t waste it.
  • Don’t give up if you start on the wrong foot.
  • Get advice from upperclassmen.
  • Form study groups with your classmates.
  • Take advantage of free peer tutoring.

To make wise academic decisions…

  • Don’t choose a major based on what you think you “should” do.
  • Don’t choose your major to get a certain professor or class.
  • Choose a major based on what you’d love to do.
  • Take a career interest test online through the CCV.
  • Find an adviser who knows your area of study.
  • If you’re unhappy with your adviser, find out about switching.
  • Talk to upperclassmen about their academic experiences.

To enjoy your social life…

  • Use caution in dating; remember your reputation is on the line.
  • If you go to a party with someone, stay with that person … know who your friends are leaving with.
  • Use the buddy system at parties; protect one another.
  • Make sure you know and trust a person before you’re alone with him or her.
  • Use alcohol responsibly … if you drink, be aware of yourself and others.
  • Don’t get involved in a serious relationship too quickly; take your time to meet people.
  • Consider your roommates before bringing your date up to the room.

To make friends at college…

  • Be courageous; introduce yourself to new people.
  • Get involved in student organizations and activities.
  • Go to hall mixers.
  • Be open to new things.
  • Be discreet in what you share about yourself at first and don’t gossip about others.
  • Don’t limit yourself to friendships with suitemates; get friends outside of your small circle.
  • Don’t be afraid to be yourself.

To get along with your roommates…

  • Set guidelines for living together—split up chores and responsibilities evenly.
  • Have rules for how to take messages, share food, borrow clothes, etc.
  • See your relationship as a business partnership, not necessarily a friendship.
  • Respect one another’s property; be considerate.
  • Be willing to compromise.
  • Don’t allow your roommates to take advantage of you.
  • Try to deal with problems and misunderstandings right away.

To maintain healthy eating habits and physical conditioning…

  • Stock up on healthy foods in your room or apartment.
  • Get a group of friends together to make suggestions to the dining hall manager.
  • Avoid late night eating and too much beer drinking.
  • Work out.
  • Get involved in intramurals or sports.
  • Ask a trainer to develop an exercise program for you.

To avoid disordered eating:

  • Learn to recognize the signs and symptoms of an eating disorder.
  • Do the online eating disorders screening at the Student Health Web site (when available).
  • Get support and/or professional help if you think you may have an eating disorder.
  • Learn what support services are available, such as the Office of Student Health Services.
  • Keep in mind that food does not solve emotional problems.
  • Model healthy attitudes.
  • Learn to be yourself and to feel comfortable in your body.
  • Don’t compare yourself to others or get obsessed with diet and exercise.

To drink responsibly:

  • Don’t be pressured to drink more than you can handle.
  • Consider taking the Alcohol Screening online at the Student Health Web site.
  • Consider taking the AlcoholEdu course (contact the Office of Student Health Services).
  • Consider attending the Journeys Group.
  • Learn how alcohol effects you and your body; know your limits.
  • Remember that non-drinkers can be positive role models.
  • Don’t drink to relieve stress or deal with problems.
  • Don’t use alcohol as a way to make friends.
  • Keep in mind that some people will take advantage of a drunk person; remember you can’t trust everybody.
  • Know where to go if you have a problem with alcohol; the Student Health Office can help.