So now that I am an upperclassman and old experienced, I feel entitled to be giving out advice about collegiate life to anyone and everyone. This is my biggest though, especially because I desperately needed it in the beginning of my USC career.
As a confused, nervous freshman I thought professors were scary people with PhDs that would rather be researching than teaching and put these mysterious office hours on the syllabus because they had to. And that to attend said office hours you needed to bring a specific question about something that was gone over in class. So my entire freshman year, I never went to a single office hour.
WELL, HOW WRONG I WAS. Office hours are, in the words of DJ Khaled, “major key”. They are not just some weird one question / one answer situation where you need a valid reason to enter the door. And professors are not scary (they do have PhDs though, so at least I was right about one thing). My first office hour was for Physics 152 because I was lost in the electric field (lol physics jokes). And though I went in with my straightforward question, I stayed for a long time after, just talking about cool physics stuff.
In fact, most of the time in office hours I just end up chatting with my professor about things not even related to class: from summer internship advice, to even their favorite restaurants in LA. It’s how I’ve gotten to know my professors, and how they’ve gotten to know me, and that has made all the difference. I can’t believe how much I missed out on Freshman year, and now even put my professor’s office hours in my calendar. So take the plunge, and go to office hours.