Braving the New Semester: 5 Tips for Tam Freshies

FEU Advocate
January 29, 2023 09:53

by Brit Charles Quevedo

For Tamaraws, being back in thy happy halls is the best thing to ever happen after a long, well-deserved semestral break. With this new chapter, Tam Freshies will not only kick-start the semester with a set of new experiences and new goals, but new challenges as well. 

To attain their most-awaited diploma, the current Tam Freshies’ flame of knowledge and passion will keep burning and ignite even brighter. 

However, college life can either be a blessing or a curse. Pressure, fear, shock—would these lead the fiery freshies to their burnt-out ending?

Having mentioned the issues our 1st-year Tamaraws are soon to tackle, here are some tips and experiences by upperclassmen Tamaraws to not just survive through the semester, but to live through it.

Head out earlier than planned time

Considering the heavily-congested areas within FEU’s proximity, Tamaraws should ensure to provide enough time for the commute prior to their scheduled classes. 

Cliche as it may sound, third-year Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology (BSMT) student Molly Efericto still lives by the saying "time is gold."

Dealing with it on a daily basis, Efericto reiterated that transportation is one of the many things one has to deal with.

“I have some difficulty commuting, especially during rush hours. And because I stay in Ermita, I have to ride a jeep to school every day, but I should be grateful that that is the only challenge I encounter every day, unlike other students who live far more than I do,” she shared.

Three years studying at the University led Efericto to take time in using her experiences and encounters to mold her expertise in commuting. Currently, she is residing with her sister, Jara Faye Efericto, who is also studying at FEU to pursue Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).
“When taking public transportation, such as a jeepney, it is best to arrive at least 30 minutes or an hour before your estimated time of arrival to avoid any unexpected obstacles. so that you will not be late,” the medical technology student said.

Spend your money wisely!

Even a day of budgeting allowance can give someone a hard time, let alone a month! As Tamaraws become much aware of their responsibilities, more obligations may come as well. 

For the second-year Bachelor of Science in Information Technology (BSIT) student Rafe Jacob Silas Campos, finances are some serious matters to handle way back when he was once a freshman himself.

“I struggled especially nung kaka-face-to-face palang kasi malayo ako dito [Manila], kaya medyo nahihirapan. Pero nung tumagal, nakuha ko naman, nakaya ko naman. Ilan sa mga pinagkakagastusan ko araw-araw is food and pamasahe (I struggled especially during face-to-face because I live far from here [Manila], so I had a bit of a hard time. But as time passed by, I got the hang of it, I got through it eventually. Some of my daily expenses revolve around food and fare),” the sophomore stated.

With proper control and mindset, Campos managed to help himself out despite his struggles in the adulting aspect. He was even able to share some suggestions in saving up and splurging, which he wishes Tam Freshies will take note of.

“Be practical lang. Ako kasi pagdating sa pagkain, I don't like to hold back as long as nakakaano naman sa health ko. But if kunyari, vacant tapos tempting mag-comp shop ganun, you have to think practical talaga (Just be practical. Because when it comes to food, I don’t like to hold back as long as it doesn’t damage my health. But if there's ever a vacant period and it’s tempting to visit the computer shop and such, you just really have to think practical),” he advised.

Obtain the required WRP credits as soon as possible

Worrying about the credited Wellness and Recreation Program (WRP) hours by the end of semester might be one of the things that makes you an official Tamaraw

Impossible as it may seem, reaching the minimum quota is possible if dedicated. This is what happened in the case of third-year Psychology student Waltz Caroline Lucero.

“‘Yung pinaka-naging problem ko dun is ‘yung mga lower batch is mas pina-prioritize nila mag-book ng WRP [classes]. May mga days na pinayagan nilang [ng WRP] mag-book lahat ng level so parang ang natitira nalang, is yung natitira nalang talaga (What my main problem was that lower batches were prioritized in booking WRP [classes]. There are days where they [WRP] would allow all levels to book but we are offered what their remains were),” she expressed.

Based on her experiences, Lucero recommended that students should book way ahead of time and maximize credit hours by booking a WRP schedule thrice a week.

Learn to live independently

As there is a decent amount of Tamaraws coming from different provinces within the Philippines, moving out and living alone are two problems a freshman might soon encounter as the new semester finally begins.

One who would testify to this is the sophomore medical technology student Yna Alba.

“At first, it was very hard for me to adjust to an independent lifestyle. More priorities came to play and because of this, I had to improve my time management skills. I had a hard time taking care of myself for the first 3 weeks”,  she confessed.

Alba opted to live in a condominium around España Boulevard, considering its proximity to the university. Consequently, the student had taught herself to be independent even when it means to step out of her comfort zone.

Improving time management skills and setting priorities straight are some of the tips shared by Alba. Having you and yourself only makes living alone hard. According to her, you should never forget to take care of yourself; through hydrating and eating on time.

Be attentive during classes!

Let this be our new year resolution–no more spacing out and daydreaming during classes! Yet in order to make an aspiration come true, you have to put your body, mind, and heart into work too. 

But even in the simplest circumstances like attending a class, Tam Freshies can’t help but to get distracted and lose interest, like the graduating medical technology student Allan Gegare Jr.

“‘Yung problema kasi at struggle is ‘di maiiwasan, kundi male-lessen lang. Kailangan mo sya i-enjoy tas magbigay ng rason sa sarili mo para ma-motivate ka (The problems and struggles are inevitable, but can be lessened. You need to enjoy it and give yourself a reason to get motivated),” he expressed.

Resorting to many sorts of educational set-ups are hard, but to help a student learn is much harder. Gegare, having to study at FEU since pre-pandemic, found out ways in paying proper attention and effectively listening during classes.

Sa online class nung pandemic, mahirap talaga mag-focus don. Para magising talaga, nagkakape ako eh para maka-attend ng klase. May iba’t ibang ways tayo to cope with our struggles kaya kailangan mong ma-discover ‘yun (In online classes during pandemic, it is really hard to stay focused. Just to wake myself up I drink coffee before attending class. We have different ways to cope up with our struggles and we need to know what it is first),” he admitted.

Encountering some not-so-fresh situations are indeed inevitable among Tam Freshies, thus, with one course or another, we must face them still. With a few more years to go through, keeping the Tamaraw freshmen’s horns up might take them one semester closer to their dreams.

Taking the long-missed steps inside the green-and-gold campus is just the beginning of many more problems Tamaraw freshmen are yet to conquer, together. At the end of the day, the semester rather, we are left with two things to do: to be brave, and even braver.