Dig Baton Rouge

First Day Survival Guide

WHAT TO DO
By: Rickey Miller
1. Leave home super early. No matter what part of town you are headed from, traffic will be heavy. Showing up late on the first day of class when you’ve left home in plenty of time can ruin your fresh start, so make sure to leave home 45 minutes to an hour earlier than you normally would. Keep in mind that you don’t just have to get there—you also have to find a parking space and walk from your car to class. Even if you have too much time to spare once you arrive, it’ll give you time to look over your course materials and live-tweet your first day. #goodparking #blessed
2. Figure out campus transit. If you’re new to LSU’s Tiger Trails bus system, the first thing you need to do is download the TransLoc Rider app on your phone. This app shows you real-time GPS tracking of the buses on your route, letting you know what time the buses will be at your location and how long it will take to arrive on campus. Even if you’re a commuter, try parking your car at one of the lots like the one located on Nicholson Drive Extension across from Campus Federal. At this lot you can park your car, wait at the bus stop, and catch the bus to your class. This will definitely save major time and a hike across campus.
3. Make sure you double check where your classes are held. One of the most embarrassing things that could possibly happen is for you to sit down in a classroom, open your laptop, and sit through the first few minutes of class only to find out you’re in the wrong classroom. Situations like this happen more times than not. Usually a few days or weeks before school begins, changes are made to where certain classes will be held. Simply double check your schedule on MyLSU.com the morning of your first day to save yourself embarrassment of awkwardly leaving the class once you realize it’s the wrong room and the embarrassment of walking into the correct room late on the first day.
4. Finalize any decisions to either drop or keep courses. It happens – sometimes you think you’re excited about a course until you arrive on the first day. Maybe it’s the time of the course you are wanting to change, maybe you got bad vibes from the teacher, or maybe the class simply isn’t what you expected. No matter the reason, make course changes the first day of school. This way you won’t miss much from your new course that you’ve chosen, and you can beat the rush to other classes.
5. Review your first day handout and buy your books/materials ASAP. If you know which classes you’re keeping, grab those books and materials quickly. The LSU bookstore seems to sell out of material and books necessary for a lot of courses. Therefore, the sooner you buy your books the sooner you will be on top of all your assignments. You should also check out Co-op Bookstore and Amazon Prime. Amazon Prime has a free trial period for students, so signing up and taking advantage of buying your books with speedy shipping is relatively painless.
WHAT YOU NEED
By: Rebecca Docter
With summer ending and school beginning, it can be tough aimlessly shopping for back to school items. Take this list with you on your next shopping trip for some advice on what you need in the upcoming semester.
1. Raincoats/Boots. If you’re like me, you didn’t know when you moved here Louisiana weather has more mood swings than your teen sister. Stay dry in a downpour and keep your feet from turning into popsicles with rubber boots and a sturdy windbreaker. Jazz it up with a fun print or keep it classic with neutral colors.
2. Removable wall décor. Whether you’re in a dorm or moving into a new apartment, chances are, you won’t be allowed to redecorate as much as you want. Make your space your own with art that won’t leave marks on your walls. Most supermarkets and craft stores carry wall stickers that look painted on, and Command hooks give support to those framed photos of your friends back home.
3. A Walk in the Woods. Get ahead of the game by reading Bill Bryson’s hilarious tale of a man finding himself on the Appalachian Trail before the film adaptation is released September 2. Featuring Hollywood legend Robert Redford and Nick Offerman of “Parks and Recreation,” the film promises to bring Bryson’s witty story of self-exploration to life.
4. Good Job, Brain! The 45 minutes I look forward to more than anything, except “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” every week. Describing itself as “your weekly quiz show and offbeat trivia podcast,” the show’s four hosts share surprising facts and fun quizzes about everything from beaver buttholes to illegitimate German princes.
5. Versatile wardrobe pieces. The key to staying comfortable without breaking the bank is sticking to clothes that you can wear in all seasons. Summer dresses can be styled for fall with a jean jacket that will keep you warm. For the fellas, just swap those shorts for a lightweight pair of chinos for a smart look that’ll last you in all kinds of weather.
6. Slow cooker. With college comes studying, and with studying comes the occasional realization you haven’t eaten in the last 12 hours. Avoid eating too much fast food in these dire circumstances by setting up meals in advance- make a nice roast, hearty chili or Mom’s mac and cheese before you head to class and it’ll be waiting for you when you get home.
7. Portable Bluetooth speaker. Whether you’re on the Parade Ground or studying after class, a little mood music enhances any occasion. Stream your favorite tunes on your phone and share them with everyone around you with one of these handy portable boomboxes. Check out a waterproof model for Louisiana rainstorms or hanging by the pool.

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