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Women’s colleges aren’t for a lot of people, or so some think. But for those who do choose the environment (go you!), here’s some good ol’ fashion advice about how to make it through.

1. Realize That the Classroom Will Feel Different

You’re attending a highly specialized school that only certain types of people applied to–that is, women, and women who desire to be surrounded by other women. This can mean many things, but usually starts with the fact that your peers are independent and looking to excel. The energy in the classroom can be amazing, especially because women’s colleges tend to be smaller, which means tinier classes and more room for discussion and opportunities to be involved in what you’re learning. The absence of men in the classroom can feel both freeing (no need to impress or feel scared to speak up in front of Mr. GoodLooking in the next row if you’re into guys) and lacking–missing the male perspective can be a disadvantage.

2. Make Friends

You’ll be surrounded by like-minded peers in the sense that you shared the decision of choosing to attend a women’s college. Of course you won’t like everyone you meet, but you have a good value base for meeting people you do like. Women’s colleges are fabulous places to make solid, life-long lady friends.

3. Be Thankful For the Cleanliness

The stereotype that women are more tidy than men isn’t always true, but when it comes to shared dorm bathrooms, you’re probably going to have a better (and sometimes less awkward) experience.

4. Relax–Your Dating Life Isn’t Over

Every college student, regardless about whether or not they attend a women’s college, needs to chill out about relationships. First, there will always be opportunities to date  in life, including during school–most women’s colleges are in the vicinity of larger cities or coed schools. Mount Holyoke and Smith, part of the Five College Consortium, are fifteen minutes away from Amherst College, UMASS Amherst, and Hampshire College and next to/in the awesome town of Northhampton, MA. Barnard and Simmons are in major cities, NYC and Boston, which are full of other colleges. Wellesley has Babson. The list goes on. And remember, most people don’t marry their college boyfriend/girlfriend.

5. Get To Know Your City

Find a place away from campus that you like to go to. It’s nice to escape the college (and female) bubble once in a while, especially on the weekends.

6. Pause–You’ll Likely Never Be In An Environment Like This Again

Think–a female-dominated space, filled with most likely intelligent women who want to be in one? Where else will you experience this vibe again to such degree? Cherish the community now–you’re going to miss it when you leave.

7. Know That It Can Be Hard

First, college is hard no matter where you go if you plan to do well. But the environment at a women’s college can be demanding, tough and sometimes isolating. The lack of men can be hard–whenever I bring my boyfriend into the campus center at my school he always receives looks of slight astonishment! But just know that the benefits of choosing a women’s college beat out the negatives by far. I wouldn’t turn back on my decision to attend one for anything.

8. Reap The Benefits

Think–you’ve created a network for yourself full of women who support other women! This can be great down the long road. And we all know about the studies that show women’s college graduates feel more confident in the work field post-grad and often demonstrate higher rates of professional success. Not a given, but a very probable possibility.

9. Swap Clothing

Your wardrobe just quadrupled in size by attending a women’s college. Watch out for free bins or online trading posts to score new clothes/accessories/female things…

10. Read This BuzzFeed Article

This will make you laugh: “29 Signs You Go To A Women’s College: Where Every Night Is Ladies’ Night

Do you go to a women’s college?

Image via The Miscellany