Things You Need to Know Before Going to College
College is a wonderful and exciting time in a young person’s life. The ability to live away from home and experience freedom for the first time is an intoxicating dream for many high school students.
While college can be one of the best times of your life, there are many pitfalls that you can unknowingly fall into if you are not prepared.
Here are some tips to help you make the most of your time at college and succeed academically – things to know before going to college.
You Might not Click With Your Roommates
You may hear stories about college friends whose bond began in their shared freshman dorm room. From their first interaction, they were instant and lifelong friends.
For as many of these perfect matches exist, though, there are many other pairings that do not hit it off instantaneously, or ever.
On the bright side, many colleges do allow you to choose your roommates moving forward. So don’t despair if your roommate is more nuisance than a companion.
You will have plenty of other opportunities while you are at college to develop true and lasting friendships with people you do not live with, and these people will help you to survive that first year.
Don’t Let Your Newfound Freedom Lead You Astray
As soon as you get to college, you’ll likely feel overwhelmed by the amount of freedom you have. Your parents will not be setting a curfew for you, and there won’t be a principal administering detention if you skip a class or don’t turn in your work.
However, there are still real consequences for your behavior and your choices, so it’s important not to let the allure of freedom keep you from following through with your responsibilities.
You need to follow the directives from the professors and the student code of conduct to ensure that you will not be penalized through failing grades or a hearing on the campus.
Remember that you and/or your parents are spending a lot of money on your education. You don’t want to let it go to waste. Check the tips to improve the value of a college degree.
Things to know before going to college- Rent Your Textbooks
While it does not compete with the sticker shock of tuition, the cost of college texts can be incredibly expensive. Each new book required for a course is likely to cost three figures, and a full courseload could push your total close to four digits.
Particularly for elective courses, you will not necessarily need or read the textbook again after you finish the class.
A much more reasonable option is to rent textbooks for each semester. Typically you will pay a fraction of the list price, and return the textbooks at the end of the term.
Not only do you save a bunch of money when you rent textbooks, but you also help save trees by recycling the books to another user when you are finished.
Find Your Balance Between Work and Socializing
It is very common for a freshman to struggle with adjusting to the responsibility of managing their coursework without any oversight from their parents.
With friends living nearby and everyone able to make their own decisions about how they spend their days and nights, it can be hard to prioritize working on papers and studying for tests.
Be sure to schedule in time to complete your classwork, especially as you get closer to midterms and finals when the workload increases. You will find that there is still plenty of time to hang out too!
Check one of the best college student tools – career networking.
Keep in Touch with Your Parents
Once you settle into life at college and your initial nerves fade, you will notice that the urge to contact your parents on a regular basis lessens significantly.
In between attending classes, doing your work, and hanging out with your friends, try to call your family once a week or every other week.
While you are off living a new and independent life, your parents are faced with your absence in the house every day. If you call every so often, it helps them to continue to feel connected to.
Who knows, they may send some extra money or a care package your way!
Things to know before going to college – Don’t be afraid to ask for Help
One of the overall goals of college is to learn how to live more independently. As noted above, you will manage your own time, ensure that you get to your classes and do your work, and ensure that you have all of the correct materials.
Even though you should be trying to do things on your own first, you should always feel comfortable asking for help.
Whether you need academic support from the student center, advice on your major from your advisor, or care from health services, it is always okay to reach out and ask for help when you need it.
As you prepare to head off to college for the first time, it is important to prepare yourself mentally, emotionally and financially for the journey ahead.
Be sure to remain focused on your studies, save some money by renting textbooks, and ask for help when you need it.
Four years of college go by so fast, you will want to make sure you enjoy this time of your life while also setting yourself up for success after you graduate.