If you’re heading off to your freshman orientation, you’re about to meet a lot of new people, learn all about your school and get tons of essential information for the upcoming year.

All of these new things shouldn’t feel overwhelming though. They can help alleviate the burden of transitioning to college life. If you want to be sure you’re making the most out of your freshman orientation, here’s what to do.

1. Don’t Be Too Cool

An orientation involves a scheduled program of events and activities. While following the agenda is optional, Courtlyn Patrick, an orientation leader at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, recommends sticking to the program. “The orientation leaders created a program to benefit you and to help with this huge transition,” she says. “I know everything might not seem interesting, like financial aid or admissions sessions, but I promise it will all be beneficial.” Christina Natale, a campus tour guide at SUNY Albany, says students shy away from icebreakers, but she advises you to get involved. Sure they’re cheesy, but Natale says they actually do help make real connections. Patrick summarizes it best: “Don’t be too cool for orientation!”

2. Ask Questions

At freshman orientation, you’ll be surrounded by people whose main goal is to give you information. So take advantage and ask your questions, “no matter how silly you may think they are,” Natale says. She says she’s seen students hesitate or hold back on asking questions, but she’s quick to remind incoming freshmen that “everyone is there to help.” You just need to ask for it.

3. Explore, On and Off Campus

Learn everything you can about the campus. “On your free time, walk around and explore your new home for the next four years. It will definitely be much easier when trying to find your classes in the fall,” Patrick says. Scope out the good parking lots and look for basic off-campus necessities like grocery stores, the post office and dry cleaners.

4. Take Notes

Freshman orientation is a lot of information at once. You want to remember as much of it as possible, and with new-student nerves, you may not absorb it all right away. Write down what you’re learning and bring a folder for all the handouts you get. Even if they don’t seem important in the moment, you may want to review them later.

5. Talk to Older Students

Orientation is a great opportunity to meet your future classmates, but, Patrick says, “Take this opportunity to open up and get to know some of the students who already attend your university or college.” Upperclassmen are full of useful information. All you need to do is make a quick introduction to a few older students and you could unlock  insider tips about life on campus, info on your future professors and invitations to fun events.

6. Stay Off Social Media

You might feel tempted to share every moment of orientation with your friends at home, but this is one of those times where you should be totally focused on what’s going on around you, according to Anna Hendricks, a student at Virginia Tech. “Enjoy the moments you are having without proving to the rest of the world you are having fun,” she says. Being fully present will allow you to get to know your future campus and your classmates better.

7. Be Way Too Nice to Everyone

Hendricks also adds that freshman orientation is a time to go above and beyond socially and be friendly to everyone, even if they don’t seem like they have future-friend potential. Orientation is an intense interpersonal situation. It’s easy for people to feel snubbed or excluded. And, of course, these are people you’ll see again. “A college campus will feel very small very soon, and you don’t want to be on anyone’s bad side,” cautions Hendricks. Be the most welcoming version of yourself during those first impressions and you’ll be golden.  

Commit to making the most of your freshman orientation to help set yourself up for success your freshman year and throughout your entire time at college.