15 Tips for Incoming University of Memphis Freshmen

The University of Memphis may seem intimidating for new freshmen, but it’s really not that bad!  It won’t take you long to learn the ins and outs, but we want to help with a few tips gathered from our Tiger Bookstore employees.

  1. Keep an open mind.  Now that you’re a University of Memphis freshman, you will be branching out and experiencing new people, places and things.  The University of Memphis is a diverse college environment reflecting its surrounding city.  Step outside of your comfort zone and make new and different friends.  Take risks and get involved with organizations with which you’re not accustomed.  Shake the familiar…this is your time to grow!
  2. You’ll soon figure out that because Mom isn’t around to tell you to pick up your clothes, study, or not stay out late…there is a reason she harped on you!  It’s time to get responsible and take care of yourself.  (In other words, if the towel you’ve used for two weeks smells moldy…wash it.)
  3. Go to class!  Several of your professors will have attendance policies.  Make sure you read your syllabus closely.  Sometimes more than 3 absences can earn you an F!  Pay attention in class and sit up front.  If you’re not a morning person don’t schedule morning classes, because you probably won’t go.   Take only classes you enjoy your first year while you’re still adjusting.  Yes, its okay to take Underwater Basket Weaving 101 if you absolutely love it, even if you don’t want to be a professional underwater basket weaver.  If it counts and you’ll go to class, take it.
  4. Don’t procrastinate.  Turn off your Facebook (as difficult as this may be) and knock out your studies so you can have a good time without the stress.  College workloads can pile up much faster than they did in high school!
  5. Get to know your professors.  Take advantage of their office hours.  Not only will you get a feel for who they are and what they want out of you and your work, you might need a letter of recommendation one day.  Your professors are your best resource for advice during your college years and they want you to come to them!
  6. Ask around for advice.  Professors, advisers, upper classmen, student workers…if you don’t know, ask!  People have been where you are and they are more than happy to help!  Most of the employees at Tiger Bookstore are college graduates or currently attending the U of M.  We are always willing to help with any questions, no matter how strange!
  7. Find classes and parking before the first day of class.  The University of Memphis is a metropolitan campus with a lot of commuters.  So, make sure you know where to park for your classes and leave time for the train !(That dang train will be a whole blog post-or rant-on its own.)  It might be worth paying extra for Priority Gate Access Parking.  These are sold on a first-come, first-served basis.  There is also the Blue Line shuttle service that helps move people around campus and between the main campus and Park Avenue campus. So you don’t have to ‘parking lot hop’!
  8. Call your family! They miss you!
  9. The ‘Freshman 15’ is a real thing!  Unfortunately, it’s hard to eat healthy on a budget.  (And Ramen noodles are not very healthy for you!)  But it is possible!  The University of Memphis Food Service has a great guide for nutrition and wellness.  Also check the site $5 Dinners for some creative ways to eat well on a budget!
  10. Stay healthy!  Take advantage of the U of M Student Recreation and Fitness Center.  Check out their many fitness programs designed to assist you with your personal fitness and weight loss goals.  If you feel sick, or have any health related questions, Visit the U of M Student Health Services on campus.  All these services are free…so use them!
  11. Have community showers in your dorm?  Wear flip-flops  in the shower.  Seriously.
  12. The University of Memphis is consistently ranked the safest large campus in the state of Tennessee.  But, it is still important to always be aware of your surroundings and follow simple procedures for staying safe Learn where the safety phones are.  Call 901-678-HOME (4663) if you would like a Tiger Escort. This service is available from dusk until dawn, 7 days a week.   The emergency number for the University Police is 901-678-4357 (678-HELP).  Program their number into your cell phone’s speed dial.
  13. Of course you will be warned to be careful with your drinking, your irresponsible Facebook posts, and safe sexual practices.  All college students make silly mistakes all in the name of having a good time.  Just be smart and make sure those mistakes don’t ruin your chance for a bright future.  You know that ‘permanent record’ you always heard about growing up?  Well, maybe it wasn’t so permanent.  But it is now.  You are responsible for yourself and transitioning into the ‘real world’.  Have fun, but be smart!
  14. Explore!  Learn about your University of Memphis, visit the museum, go to a U of M football game,  find out about all the awesome things to do in Memphis! (And visit Tiger Bookstore)
  15. This is the time of your life!  So play hard, stay healthy, study smart, call your mom, wear  flip flops in community showers, think twice about that 3AM Facebook post, wash your towels, and ENJOY!  Hope you love the University of Memphis as much as we do and have a great year!

5 Replies to “15 Tips for Incoming University of Memphis Freshmen”

  1. Alexis

    Pay attention when driving and walking around campus! The rule “look both ways before you cross the street” still applies. The intersection at Southern/Patterson/Walker and the railroad tracks is a tricky one so pay attention at all the stop signs!

    1. Tiger BookstoreTiger Bookstore

      Good points! At that crazy intersection people need to realize that the traffic going over the tracks doesn’t stop. It’s very confusing! Thanks, Alexis (:

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  3. CJWest

    Please don’t walk around campus glued to your phone. Many students have made themselves targets by both having their electronics out and available, and simultaneously not paying attention to their surroundings! In addition, if you’re always looking at your phone, you won’t notice the inflatables or the random petting zoo that sometimes appear on the UC lawn. 🙂


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