A Day In The Life Of A College Freshman

I’ve been meaning to record one of my days and turn it into an “a day in the life” post ever since the beginning of the school year, but I just kept putting it off and then making excuses for not doing it! Well, now I am doing it, finally.

I’ve written similar posts in the past, which you can find here if you’re interested. I’m super excited to publish this and hope that you will enjoy reading it, since this is my first “a day in the life” post as a full-time college student!

The day I chose to keep track of was Tuesday, April 12 – exactly a week ago. I carried a pen and small notebook in my backpack and purse all day that day in order to jot down how I spent my time.


6:45 AM – My roommate’s alarm clock goes off, waking both me and her up. I burrow deeper into my nest of blankets and doze off for a while.

7:00 AM – My alarm clock goes off. I don’t move at all because I didn’t sleep very well the night before – I kept tossing and turning and waking up over and over again – so I’m still exhausted.

7:15 AM – I finally climb down from my bunk bed and check my phone to see if I have any new emails and texts.

7:35 AM – I get dressed, brush my hair and teeth, et cetera.

7:50 AM – I curl in up in our chair and almost fall asleep AGAIN.

8:10 AM – I make myself a mug of orange tea and reread my notes from Media Usage & Effects because I have an test in that class today.

8:30 AM – I type up the MU&E reading response that is due later this week.

8:40 AM – I check my school email and my blog stats/comments.

9:00 AM – I steal a bagel from the dining hall – we’re not technically supposed to take food out of there, but everyone does it – and eat it as I walk to Language Rights. I get there a bit early, so I reread more of my notes.

9:30 AM – We’ve been doing group presentations in Language Rights lately, so I listen to a presentation about Spanish in the US and make comments about it on my peer evaluation form. As of late my professor has occasionally let us leave class after that day’s presentation is over since we’re running out of content to cover, but not today: After the presentation, she gives a brief lecture about the language rights struggles faced by ethnic Koreans in Japan.

10:45 AM – With class over, I take my time walking back to my dorm room since the weather is super nice today.

11:10 AM – I register for fall classes (!!!!!!) and put the finishing touches on some slides for a group presentation I’m helping to give in Wonder Woman Unleashed later today. I also get distracted reading about the upcoming Justice League movies.

12:00 PM – I head over to the huge lecture hall where I have Media Usage and skim my notes one more time to make sure I’ve got this.

12:30 PM – Time for exam #3! [I didn’t know this that day, obviously, but I ended up getting 100% on my test! I was super proud of myself because although I’ve earned high scores on the previous tests, this was my first 100% on a test and/or major project in that class.]

1:10 PM – I pick up some food from the student union and walk to the building where Wonder Woman Unleashed is held. Normally, MU&E ends at 1:20 and then I eat in the dining hall with my friends from that class, but we’re allowed to leave the test as soon as we’re done and my friends and I all finished at different times, so… today is a little different.

1:20 PM – I eat my sandwich and granola bar while reading a few pages from Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh. One by one, my friends trickle in and we have a last-minute discussion about our presentation.

2:00 PM – Presentation time! We listen to two other presentations and then give ours, which is about the Amazons and other all-girl entities such as women’s colleges and the Vuvalini from Mad Max: Fury Road. (This is what happens when I’m in your presentation group…)

3:15 PM – Class is over, so I walk back to my dorm.

3:25 PM – I curl up in our chair with the intent of getting up within ten or fifteen minutes, but instead I end up taking a nap. A long one. I was able to ignore my exhaustion earlier, but now it’s really catching up to me. Also, I’ve been getting a lot of headaches and nausea lately, and my tiredness is only making that worse. So although I wasn’t very productive during this time, it was probably for the best because I felt horrible.

4:50 PM – I wash my dirty dishes that have accumulated over the past few days and vacuum the room so I can cross them off my to-do list and make me feel better about not doing anything for the last hour and a half.

5:15 PM – I do the assigned reading for Travel Writing: This week we’re reading Trench Town Rock by Kamau Brathwaite. And I make myself some chai tea because tea is life.

6:20 PM – I head to the dining hall to get dinner with my friend Jill. However, she winds up in a really long line for food, and since I get something different and I have a meeting immediately afterward, I end up mostly eating by myself so that I’ll be done in time.

7:00 PM – I go to my meeting, which is for a new group on campus: Hawks For Choices, a pro-choice group. Since it’s only the first meeting, we go over a lot of introductory explanations and stuff.

7:30 PM – I walk back to my room and try to make my headache go away by sitting very still and very quietly. It doesn’t work. It never works. I don’t know why I always think it’s going to work.

7:50 PM – I veryyyyy slooooooowly make a rough outline for today’s blog post.

8:20 PM – I signed up for an anti-street-harassment event since April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, so I figure that I should go to it. The cool night air seems to lessen my headache somewhat, and once I’m there we write a bunch of messages on the sidewalk in chalk. Mostly, I end up writing “cats against catcalls” and drawing little cats all over.

9:10 PM – I walk back to the dorm.

9:20 PM – I write this blog post about Beverly Cleary’s one hundredth birthday.

10:30 PM – I make an outline for my upcoming final essay in Travel Writing.

10:40 PM – I take a shower and get ready for bed, once again very slowly. I finally cave in and take some medicine for my headache – I’d been trying to avoid that because now I’m all out and will have to go to the store to buy more tomorrow.

11:15 PM – My head still hurts too much to focus on a bright computer screen but I am determined to do something productive, so I do my homework for Intro to the Short Story. We’re discussing “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” by Joyce Carol Oates in class tomorrow, but I’ve read it before for other classes so I just skim it and then do the secondary readings, which end up being essays Oates wrote about her writing process. I drink some chamomile tea while I read because I want to fall asleep as fast as possible.

11:40 PM – TIME FOR BED.


Well, there you have it. Obviously, my class schedule changes from day to day, and how I spend my time on Tuesdays isn’t exactly the same as how I spend my time on, say, Fridays. Most days I aim to get more done, and usually do, but on the twelfth I was feeling particularly tired, headache-y, and gross, so I… didn’t.

But that’s OK. I really wanted to write one of these posts from the point of view of a freshman in college, and the spring semester is drawing to a close so I knew my time was running out and that I needed to pick a day, any day. And last Tuesday was the day I picked, even if not everything ended up going according to plan. IT’S OK. IT HAPPENS.

Also, I just realized that I don’t normally have as many social things on Tuesday nights. Actually, apart from eating dinner with various friends, I usually only have Spectrum meetings on Wednesday nights (and even then I don’t always go because sometimes the discussion topics don’t interest me or I’m overwhelmed with homework) and sometimes a movie night on the weekends. So Tuesday was a bit atypical in that regard as well.

Also, that day was the one that finally convinced me to pay a visit to the student health & wellnes office because I haven’t been feeling well for a while, and they drew blood to test for things (anemia?), so we’ll just have to see how that goes. As you can see from the rest of this post, it’s been interfering with my ability to concentrate on things such as schoolwork, and I probably should have gotten it looked at earlier because it’s been going on for a few months. UGHHHH.


If anyone wants to steal this idea, I don’t mind. What are your days like?


About nevillegirl

Elizabeth. University of Iowa class of 2019. Triple majoring in English & Creative Writing, Journalism, and Gender, Women's, & Sexuality Studies. Twenty-one-year-old daydreamer, introvert, voracious reader, aspiring writer, and lesbian. Passionate about feminism, mental health, comic books, and cats.
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5 Responses to A Day In The Life Of A College Freshman

  1. Congrats on the 100%!! And thanks for sharing this was really fun to read. 🙂

  2. Miriam Joy says:

    Sorry to hear about your headaches 😦 I get a lot of them too, and nausea, but I don’t really have any advice. Except to check if you’re anaemic or vitamin deficient, because that can be a bitch when it comes to general feelings of ickiness. So if you haven’t had a blood test recently, it might be worth having one (or just taking some supplements as a preventative).

    I’m amazed how early you get up. I suck at getting up in the morning, so when I was at uni I rarely got up before 8am and it was usually a lot later. At the moment I’m having to get up for work and it sucks. 😦

    Ah, women’s colleges, my area of expertise. Say anything interesting about us?

  3. orphu44 says:

    Ooh, I love day-in-the-life posts! Good luck with your headaches/health!

  4. Day in the life posts are the best~ I keep meaning to do one but I have a feeling it’d be fairly boring. 😛 Congrats on that exam!

  5. Pingback: The Little Engine Tag: (That’s right. I’m starting my own tag) | The Little Engine that Couldn't

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