1. Don't fear the subway. Everyone has gotten confused on the subway, so don't worry about it! The first time I rode on the subway by myself, I got on the downtown train instead of the uptown and ended up in Brooklyn and very late to lunch with my sister. It happens to everyone, and you learn from those experiences. They also make really great stories later on.
2. You're allowed to be a tourist. If your dream is to go to the top of the Empire State Building, then go to the top of the Empire State Building! People line up to do those things because they're awesome, so do them!
3. However, don't forget you live in one of the most culturally diverse places in the world! Go eat some weird kind of cuisine, or walk through a neighborhood to which you've never been. Get out of your comfort zone! Isn't that why you moved to New York in the first place?
4. Take a day and explore the city by yourself. The best way to figure out what you like to do in the city is to go find it on your own. Don't get me wrong, being with your friends and family is a lot of fun too, but having some "me time" in the city can be really awesome.
5. You don't have to spend a lot of money to have fun in the city. There are countless websites and books about doing New York the cheap way. There is always a park having some kind of free movie night, or a $1 open-mic night somewhere that's always exciting. Some of the best food in the city comes from a food truck, anyway. Having fun doesn't require breaking the bank.
6. Learn how to balance the excitement of the city with your own personal needs. When you get here, you're going to feel like you need to do all of these exciting things because you live in New York City now. Take advantage of it, but don't let yourself get burnt out by it. We're very lucky that we have our beautiful campus to escape to, so utilize that!
7. Starbucks isn't the only place to get a decent cup of coffee. I promise! It's overpriced, and you could do better at a coffee cart. Nothing will make you feel more like a New Yorker than when the man at the coffee cart knows your order.
8. Go see a show! I'm not just saying this because I'm a theatre kid (which I am), but because no matter who you are, seeing a show, either on Broadway, off-Broadway, or just an impromptu show in the subway, is always a good time!
As a Fordham student, we're incredibly fortunate to have all that New York City has to offer right at our fingertips...so have fun!