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10 Things Every New PCC Student Should Know

10 things PCC students should know

The first semester of college can be a whirlwind of excitement and personal growth, especially when there’s so much to do and experience. After arriving at Pensacola Christian College, finding ways to get involved in activities, leadership positions, and meeting new friends can be the difference between a good semester and a great one. Get a head start with these ten tips!

1. Bring All the Right Stuff

Figuring out the right items to bring to your residence hall room can raise many questions. To create a relaxing and comfy environment, bring certain items to make your room feel a little more like your own! And for general room upkeep and White Glove, coordinate with your roommates for any necessary cleaning items.

Residence Hall Items

  • A bed topper
  • Extra blankets
  • A laundry basket
  • Decorations
  • A bed lamp
  • A bed shelf
  • Storage shelves

Cleaning Supplies

  • Window cleaner
  • Toilet bowl cleaner
  • Disinfectant spray
  • Paper towels
  • Scrub brushes
  • Dusting supplies

After moving into the residence hall, you and your roommates can discuss shared items such as trashcans, curtains, or an ironing board.

“Coffee makers are essential! Late-night studying calls for a cup (or two) of coffee to get you going in the morning [to] take on the day of classes,” shared Alicia Sanchez (Jr., GA). “Umbrellas are also a must. Pensacola weather has a mind of its own, and you won’t want to encounter a surprise rain shower when you get out of class.”

2. College Is Better with Friends
girls at freshmen connect event

Meeting new people can bring a mix of emotions; but taking the time to get to know others is well worth it, and those connections start as soon as new students arrive on campus. From meeting roommates to working with other students to shopping at the Textbook Sale, you’ll be surprised at the number of people you’ll meet within the first few weeks. And at the beginning of the fall semester, new students are invited to attend the 2026 Connect in Varsity dining hall and Welcome to the Nest! in the Sports Center—social events designed for you to get to know your peers.

The best part? Making friends can be as simple as showing kindness. “Just smile. You never know what people are going through, and a friendly hello really might brighten their day,” said Hannah Parsons (Sr., MI). “And once a week, do a random act of kindness. It doesn’t have to be anything big. It might be getting someone a candy or a little note—just letting people know you’re thinking of them.”

3. Classroom Success—It’s More than Possible

Academic success starts in the classroom! Meeting with your teachers and communicating any struggles, issues, or concerns can positively affect your classroom experience. Asking questions about class concepts or difficult lessons can help you stay on track in your classes. Staying alert during class, reviewing notes with classmates, and even doing personal research can aid memory.

“When it comes to getting the most out of a class, stay engaged,” said Alicia. “Actively listen and take good notes in a way that will help you understand them when you review them later. Learn the content rather than just letting it pass through one ear and out the other.”

4. Study Smarter, Not Harder

The main reason for college? Getting a degree! Studying for classes can be much easier with flashcards, educational websites, class notes, and help from your teachers or friends. Forming a study group with friends at the Rebekah Horton Library, Common Grounds Café, or even a nice spot outside can be a refreshing break from the residence room. Plan out the day and stay on top of due dates and assignments. If homework gets confusing, visit the Academic Success Office to get help with a paper, useful study tips, or a tutor.

“Finding a quiet place is the first step, even off campus,” said Hannah. “Study hard, but don’t forget to take breaks. See who else is in your class and study together. It helps [to] get a point of view from someone else.”

5. Get Involved and Pursue Your Passions
PCC symphonic band

One of the best decisions you can make is getting involved with a variety of opportunities! Join student-led projects, try out for one of the PCC Eagles teams, and run for available leadership positions. Dozens of Christian Service groups also go to the local community and serve at senior homes, parks, and neighborhoods for children’s ministry. Get involved with music opportunities like

  • Symphonic Band,
  • PCCymphony,
  • Spirit Singers,
  • and more!

There are several productions to try out for and attend, including Fine Arts, a professional-level performance that all students attend twice every semester. You can also get involved in the campus-wide Mission Project with a different theme and focus each year.

For Josiah Tyler (So., Brazil), many of these opportunities have enhanced his experience at PCC. “To audition for plays, be a member of the college band, sing in Rejoice choir, witness to kids at a Bible club, and participate in collegian soccer were all special for me,” said Josiah. “There are plenty of activities for all people and interests.”

6. Collegians: Made for Making Connections

One of the most rewarding college experiences is choosing your collegian! Currently, there are forty-eight student-led collegians, each with specific Greek letters and a mascot. In these groups, members attend monthly meetings, can participate in Members-Only Outings and leadership opportunities, and build close friendships. Members also participate in seasonal sports as valuable players or supportive fans. Whether you’re seeking friends, fun experiences, or leadership development, collegians have something for everyone.

“I have been elected to serve as the vice president of the Theta Kappa Rho Lions,” Alecia shared. “As an officer, I have been given the opportunity to invest in a collegian that has already invested so much in me. I have made so many friendships and memories in my collegian, and I want to help other girls get the most out of theirs too.”

7. Share Your Prayer Requests and Praises

Spiritual growth is another important aspect of college life at PCC. Prayer groups, led by a prayer leader and assistant prayer leader, bring students together to encourage and uplift one another through praying, singing, and sharing encouragement. Prayer group meets every Thursday and is optional on Monday and Tuesday.

Sarah Leiford, an assistant dean for Student Life, shares the main benefit of prayer group: “While church and chapel allow for communal worship and learning, prayer group provides a relaxed atmosphere for fellowship and encouragement within a smaller group.”

8. Don’t Wait for an Invite—Attend Events
students at collegian event

PCC offers a variety of events each semester that you can get involved in and attend with friends. The fall semester kicks off with Greek Rush, an event for new students to choose a collegian while enjoying food, fun games, and floats during the Greek Rush Parade. Before the semester ends, PCC holds traditional events such as the Turkey Bowl, intense collegian soccer championships, and the Christmas Lights Celebration to sing along with beloved carols and listen to Christmas music. These events bring the campus together to enjoy the holiday season and cultivate community.

In the spring semester, students hear solid preaching and gain spiritual refreshment during Bible Conference. Then the newest campus event Greek Week fosters collegiate spirit and encourages collegian members to participate in themed events and surprises.

There are also student-led Academic Clubs and workshops open to all students each semester that center around specific interests and fields of study. “If you’re interested in politics or looking at law school, check out Freedom Forum and the Pre-Law Society,” said Benjamin Bostwick (Sr., FL). Check the calendar of events, Eagle’s Nest, or display screens around campus for current and upcoming events.

9. Pay for College During College

With school payments, coffee runs, and everything in between, working on campus can be beneficial and practical. PCC offers many on-campus (or right next to campus) jobs that can provide you with diverse work experience perfect for a résumé. “Students who work for PCC while completing their college education can develop a variety of professional skills that they can put into practice in a Christian environment,” explained Brandon Roberts, director of Student Employment. “These opportunities can help jumpstart their careers and enable them to operate successfully in a variety of workplaces.”  

Student workers working in environmental services

The Work Assistance Program allows students to have a job that works with their class schedules and busy lives. Jobs range from Abeka Publishing to the Cabinet Shop, Campus Store, Housekeeping, and many other areas! “Having an on-campus job is super convenient,” said Serena Bryan (Jr., IN). “We are making money for school, and the plus side is that we don’t have to drive anywhere. It’s right within walking distance. I had worked in Dining as a server for Four Winds and then moved up to Student Leader, and now this upcoming semester, I will be a residence assistant.”

10. Explore Pensacola—Like a Local!

Living in Pensacola offers distinct places to explore and frequent; sometimes a tourist attraction or a spot only the locals know. Most students are familiar with the area by sophomore year, often from adventures with friends or finding study spots. Visit one of Pensacola’s sugar-white beaches or natural scenes such as Bayview and Bay Bluffs park. Or explore West Campus, located 17 miles away on Perdido Bay, to use PCC’s catamarans and paddleboards during weekends. You can also attend Blue Wahoos baseball and Pensacola Ice Flyers hockey games, watch the Blue Angels, and explore Fort Pickens National Park.

Having grown up in Pensacola, Benjamin Bostwick knows what local restaurants to recommend for first-timers. “You have to stop by La Hacienda on Davis Highway and New Yorker Deli, a little place downtown,” he said. “If you feel like taking a drive, try Lambert’s in Foley, Alabama; if you feel like taking a risk, try the Blue Dot; if you feel like taking a Tums, try Rodizio’s.”

College doesn’t have to be overwhelming or confusing. With these ten tips in mind, you can confidently enter your first semester ready for new successes and challenges that come with being a college student.