Get off to a fast start!

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Your first month at IU will come and go before you realize what happened. The most important thing is to not get left behind!

First, make sure all of your schooling questions are answered as soon as they arise.  It is not wise to assume anything as a new graduate student.  Your colleagues, the department secretary, and your adviser are all in positions to help.  Personally, I have found great wisdom to be gained by peers who are a year or two older in the program.  A fellow student who is slightly more experienced that you can trust is an invaluable ally and source of information and mentoring.  Ask questions!  Your first month at IU will be a much happier experience if you ask questions at every turn.

Second, explore! Check out a football game which is $5 for students.  Or, check out a performance from the music or drama schools.  The Lotus festival is another event to attend. Brown County State Park looks beautiful in the Fall.  Lake Monroe is always close by.  McCormick’s Creek is another state park to hike…if you do be sure to bring a camera! There really are plenty of options.

Last, and probably most important, do things with your new friends.  While you may feel like the only “new” person…the truth is you are not.  GO out of your way to introduce yourself.  I did this and found that many others felt similar to me that first month at IU. Invite them to join you.  Invite them to your house.  The best thing you can do the first month to ensure you are accomplishing what you need to is to make friends with as many of your peers as possible and socialize with them — then, through simple conversation you can resolve a whole host of issues and answer a myriad of questions that you will certainly have in a new environment.  The best thing you can do is to enjoy the first month!