- Put your walking shoes on and get ready for 15 – 25 minute walks to class. Comfort is key here as a first year. T shirts, shorts, and tennis shoes will be your go-to outfit at the beginning of the year. Trust me. I tried to look cute and showed up to class with sweat covering my shirt and the blisters on my feet were killing me. A rain jacket would be a nice touch too because you never know what to expect from NC weather.
- Any of the science classes will make you feel like you are incompetent, but you aren’t. The 101 classes are popularly known as “weed out” classes. Just keep pushing through the lab reports and lectures. You have a lot of resources to use – two of them being Dey Hall peer tutoring and the Writing Center.
- Lenoir Dining Hall from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. is a rush and seats can be impossible to find. You’ll be making rounds around the dining hall until you find seats. Keep your eyes peeled seats will open up! Lenoir has sushi but Chase Dining Hall (south campus) has late night. I think the cooks make late night food with extra love.
4. Free swag is offered at a lot of events through the year. I started the school year with two Carolina t-shirts and now I have a drawer in my dresser completely full of free t-shirts. It’s not just t-shirts either, you will be set for life on water bottles, shoe laces, koozies, clif bars, key chains, cups, visors, towels, and more. You can even regift some of these things.
- Registering for classes will have you stressed. Have your phone on you to count down the seconds for your registration period and make sure you have good internet because nothing is worse than losing internet connection during registration. I usually stress out more than usual, but I always end up getting into good classes.
- If you do not get into all of the classes you wanted, then don’t panic. Sign up for class checker/coursicle online and fill out all of the information. People will drop the class and it’ll all work out… even if it’s during the first week of classes. Email professors too. They understand that the process can get chaotic.
- Remember Cs get degrees! You are probably use to getting all A’s and the occasional B *GASP* but fear not C’s are passing and if you get one or two it wont hurt you. Work hard and try your best, but sometimes you learn a lot from the classes you get Cs from. If you get an A in calc 2 I applaud you.
- Gary is the preacher that sits in the pit. UNC is a very accepting place and Gary can sometimes be not so accepting. Just sit there and enjoy the nonsense. He shares some funny stories and his debates are always amusing.
- You might meet your best friends for life in the first week of school. Get ready to open yourself up to others. The first month of school can get tiring because you’ll have to be especially friendly, but you’ll see that it was worth it in the end. Plan on doing something with your suitemates at the very beginning that way you can have some people to help you find your niche. And it’s okay if you don’t find best friends that first week!
- If you have an hour between classes and you’re tired don’t walk back to your room to nap. There is zero shame in napping in the library, the union, or even the dining hall. We all get it and we’ve all been there. Be respectful of others space and nap with confidence.
- Chancellor Carol Folt loves selfies. If you see her ask her for one! And nothing is cooler than saying you’ve met Carol and the picture is a bonus.
- If it snows prepare yourself for one of the best days of your life and maybe scariest. Stock up on snacks and be careful when making the trip to the dining hall. Students will grab anything to slide down the hills. The hill leading up to the dean dome is the ultimate hill. If you use your mattress you run the risk of ruining it, just use someone else’s. Pizza boxes and plastic containers are also good last minute resources. Warning: People will be out there until 3 a.m. sledding and screaming. Oh and you won’t find out until 6 a.m. if classes will be cancelled.
13. Franklin Street is FAR from south campus with that being said learn the bus system. The U and the p2p are your best friend. They will get you to the library, franklin, and south campus when you’re incapable of making the walk back. There are several busses and it can get confusing. If all else fails look up the route online or ask the driver if this takes you close to the destination you are trying to get to.
- You can search Pinterest for hours and make the ultimate packing list, but you will still forget something because you never know what will hit. I have borrowed shoes, money, butter, jerseys, neon sports bras I mean EVERYTHING. Don’t stress yourself out when packing, you’ll have a lot of people to help you put a last minute 80s outfit together.
- Technology can be really cool and a great resource on this huge campus. Download the following apps!
Venmo: If you don’t have cash use venmo to pay your friends back!
GroupMe: If you don’t have a groupme prepare yourself. It’s a group message app that can get crazy. I was in one for pickup soccer games… this group message was lit 24/7
UConnection: This app will give you the exclusive deals for all the food on Franklin Street and around town. At the push of a button you instantly get a deal.
Uber: As a first year you won’t have a car so Uber is a great way to get to different places. It’s also good when you’re running late… yes I am guilty of taking an Uber to class.
NextBus: You can track the busses with this app, this will give you a good estimate of when you should go to the stop and how long it’ll take for the bus to get there.
- Carolina for the Kids. Great cause and you should get involved! At least do it once. Dancers last year helped raise over $434, 139
. This money helps the families who have kids staying in the hospital at UNC. The purpose of CFTK is to help the families emotionally and financially. You can sign up for a certain committee (tech, social media, fundraising, entertainment) or you can sign up to dance. Dancers raise $150 each and stand on their feet for a full 24 hours. One thing the people in the committees do is stand all around campus and ask you if you have signed up to dance. You’ll get asked everyday at least four times a day.
- There are always things to do on or around campus. Whether it’s 5Ks, a cappella performances, or club fees you will constantly be pulling money out of your pocket. Be cautious when spending money because it can quickly shrink your bank account.
- The old well is the basic place to take pictures. She looks pretty all year round so can ya blame this beautiful monument? This place is full of magic water. Rumor has it, if you drink out of the old well on the first day of classes (FDOC) you will get a 4.0. Didn’t happen to me, but I got close.
- You don’t like basketball? Well now you do. Carolina Basketball is the best thing that has ever happened to me. If I saw a basketball player, I would freeze and text someone. They’re basically celebrities. I have gotten to enjoy standing in a line for three hours in 30-degree weather to watch some basketball and I have never left unsatisfied. Even when we lose there is so much pride for our team. Get ready for Carolina basketball. Get ready to hate duke (aka dook). The atmosphere of the campus changes during basketball season. Everyone is ready to watch the game and if we beat duke… we rush franklin street, jump over fires, and sing our alma mater to the top of our lungs.
- Don’t sweat it. You go to a top university and if you don’t know your major that’s okay. Half of first years will change their majors at some point. Relax, enjoy the free swag, the basketball, and the wonderful place you can now call home.