College Students setting New Year Resolutions


As we start 2024, many of us form new resolutions hoping to improve ourselves and our lives. Most of these resolutions focus on improving an aspect of our life or eliminating a bad habit.  For me, I begin by reflecting on the successes and challenges I have had over the past year.  Just as we set goals; I think it is important for the college student to set New Year Resolutions.

Reflections can bring positive changes in any life.  College students are on the brink of adulthood and life after college comes fast once a college diploma is earned.  Now is a great time to review your life and begin to set personal goals to improve areas where needed.

PayForED has created a list of New Year’s Resolutions for College Students:

Get Healthier

It is easy to quickly grab a burger and fries from the cafeteria on a busy study day, but try to change this in the New Year.  Review what you have been eating at the college cafeteria.  Set up a nutrition plan that includes the daily requirements of fruits, vegetables, and protein.  Try visiting the  college fitness facility or just take a walk as part of your exercise routine.  Setting up a definite schedule can measure how this lifestyle change is benefiting you.  With the amount of time currently spent in front of a computer, you need to schedule time breaks to help keep you healthy!

Get More Sleep

Getting enough sleep goes hand in hand with not procrastinating.  Create a calendar so that you are well prepared for papers and tests.  Getting more sleep will help you stay more alert for your classes and not as dependent on coffee or energy drinks.  Better planning may also help you get ahead of your studying schedule and help you avoid cramming for a test.  If a monthly calendar seems overwhelming, try focusing on just a weekly calendar.  By setting targets for each day, you can sleep more soundly knowing you have accomplished a specific goal.

Get a review of the targeted date of graduation

Review your current credit hours and make sure your presumed targeted date for graduation is correct.  Understand the correct number of credit hours for your major and also required electives.  Have you dropped any classes?  The college graduation date can be impacted by dropping classes or by not taking a certain number of credits each semester.  This means if you are only taking 15 credit hours per semester, depending on the college you may not be able to graduate in four years.  If you are unsure of your exact credits schedule time to speak to your college advisor and make sure you are on the right track.  Speaking with your college advisor should be done every semester so you know where you stand for graduation.  

Get More Involved

Your time in college is the best time to explore new activities.  Each semester to review what your college has to offer in the form of clubs, sporting events, volunteer opportunities, or organizations.  Each year you grow and change and new activities may become of interest to you.  Becoming involved in college not only helps to build your resume but also gives you the opportunity to meet new people.

Get Better Grades

A new semester is beginning.  Review your grades.  Is there room for improvement?  If so, make measurable goals to do better.  If you are struggling with a course, see what your college has to offer for extra help. This can sometimes be accomplished by getting a tutor or just by putting in more study time.  Setting realistic goals can help!  Remember, you will all be competing for a job at graduation and your GPA is an important factor.  Organization and making a calendar can help you set short-term goals for your grades.

Rate Your Housing

Now is a good time to review whether you are happy with your roommates and also your housing.  Are you living on campus or thinking about moving off-campus?  If you are planning on moving off campus review the financial differences between the two living options and see how this change will affect you financially next year and ultimately your overall student loan debt.

Update a Resume

If you haven’t made a resume yet, now is the time to reflect and begin one.  Go to the college career center for help in building and refining your resume.  When focusing on your education, emphasize your academic history including any achievements such as high GPA or academic awards as well as activities and jobs you have been involved in.  Getting your resume together early in college will make it easy to update your work history.  

Get a Co-op/Summer Job

It is never too early to begin adding to your work history.  Contact the career center and see what is available for your grade level. Review the co-op opportunities and see if practice interviews are available. Be prepared!  Another useful resource includes family and friends.  Investigating a job opportunity will help those who usually procrastinate.  

Minimize Stress

College life and classwork can be stressful. One way to avoid stress is not to leave studying and papers until the last minute. Try to avoid cramming! Make it a goal in 2024 to plan ahead.  If this means getting organized, do it.

College is a time of growth and change.  Start 2024 out strong!  It is never too late to make small changes! Making a New Year’s resolution is important for everybody.  The goal of PayForED is to reduce the stress that families face by providing resources that help you make better college decisions.

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