Keep the End Game in Mind:

If you’ve ever wondered whether your college degree will make a difference in life, stop.

Statistics from a variety of sources—the U.S. Census Bureau, the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce and Pew Research Center—show many ways that college graduates are ahead of the game. On average, they not only earn more, but are less likely to ever live in poverty*, smoke or be obese**. And, college graduates are much more likely to vote in elections.***

Improve your odds of success by:

Maximizing relationships with professors. Even if you’re in a large lecture hall with dozens of other students, don’t hesitate to visit your professor during office hours to ask for help or to get suggestions for how you might do better. Striking up a conversation could lead to new opportunities.

Meeting regularly with your advisor. Be sure you are on track for graduation and ask for career advice or ideas on how you can take advantage of campus activities.

Staying healthy. Finding a regular workout routine and keeping good eating and sleeping habits can make a big difference in your ability to handle the inevitable stress.

If you’re in danger of dropping out—even for a semester—talk to your advisor first about options. Most college campuses have plenty of resources to help you cope, so reach out for help if you need it.


* Pew Research, 2014
** CDC 2014
*** College Board, 2013