What Should You Do When You’re Unhappy at College?

Many young people are excited to go to college after high school as it’s the first time they are going to be living independently, it’s an opportunity to meet new people, and it’s an opportunity to improve their prospects. While this can be a happy time for a lot of students, not everyone finds themselves enjoying the college experience. There are many reasons why this might happen, such as feelings of homesickness, struggling to make social connections, or feeling overwhelmed by the more demanding approach to academics, as a few examples. When you are feeling unhappy in college, it can be hard to know what to do to change this, but below are a few options you could consider.

Defer and Return the Following Year

This is usually possible if you make this decision within the first semester but might prove more challenging after that. However, deferring your degree and returning the following year could be a good remedy for students who are struggling. You might find that taking a break from your academics and working or exploring other options in that time instead can help you get a better perspective on things. This way, you’re not giving up your place at the college but rather taking some time out so you can return to your studies the following year feeling more prepared to take on classes.

Seek Out Support from University Staff

If you are feeling as though you are struggling with your classes or another aspect of college life, you should look at reaching out to university staff such as student advisors, administrative staff, or your tutors for additional support. They might be able to help you address the issues that you are having and find solutions that will improve your overall experience. If you don’t tell anyone what has been difficult for you, it will be harder to get the help you need.

Consider Transferring to a Different College

You might not be happy at college at the moment, but that might be more to do with the establishment you are currently attending rather than the experience of college itself. If you don’t want to walk away from your academic opportunities, but don’t want to stay at your current school, consider transferring to a new college instead. Use campusreel.org to help you discover different colleges as options and what their transfer requirements are to help you with your applications.

Try to Make New Connections

If part of the reason you are feeling unhappy in college is that you’re struggling to make new friends in your dorm or classes, don’t give up just yet. With so many other students at the same university, there will likely be other people you can find those connections with, even if they aren’t in your immediate vicinity. Use student message boards and forums to try and make connections with other people at college, or look for social clubs that you have an interest in. Although this can be daunting at times, it is worth putting yourself out there, and you might be surprised at how many new friends you can make when you do this.

If you are unhappy at college, consider these options first and see which ones could help you improve your experience, rather than packing up at going home.

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