If you’re getting ready to start college this fall, you may experience some jitters. Your jitters result from both excitement and nervousness. You’ve never been to college before. In fact, you’ve never lived away from home at all. Eating in a dining hall every day, making brand new friends, and cramming for college exams will be new experiences.
You’ll probably find that college is one of the best times of your life. Before you begin, however, there are a few things you should handle. College is a great experience; one for which you want to prepare. Before you set out on your college journey, check off each of the following things. Here’s your ultimate guide for what to do before college.
Map Your Career
Maybe you did part of this already. By now, you should know what you’re majoring in at school. If you don’t, you may plan to focus on gen eds for the first semester. It helps your college journey, as you go forward, if you know your long terms goals. Decide what you want to major in, and what you want to do with that major. Are you aiming for a healthcare administrator position down the line? After you graduate, you could work part-time in the healthcare field and take online classes to earn an online MHA degree which could help you land a key leadership role. Knowing goals like this helps you make the right decisions on your coursework.
Get Your Electronics
As you head off to school, you need a reliable phone, laptop, and maybe a TV. Not every college student has a TV, but if you bring one, you can have movie nights in your dorm room. No matter where you live, At&t stores in Missouri to Maine can help you get a reliable new cellphone. Buy a laptop online or in the store, after doing some research on models. Make sure your laptop stores everything for which you need it. Remember, Chromebooks are cheap and easy to carry, but they can’t handle much more than web browsing and document creation.
Get Your Dorm Supplies
In a few months, you’ll move into a dorm. This summer, decide what you plan to bring and how you want to decorate. There’s a great deal to consider when it comes to dorm room comfort, so make a list. You’ll need a comforter, a few pairs of sheets, a lamp or two, curtains, and some fun ways of adding color. You might want to bring christmas lights or a few posters. The dorm room’s windows may not be enough to block the sunlight, so you should look at heavy curtains or window blinds. Make sure you’re comfortable, and that you have what you need as you move.
Get Your Books
Before you start your classes, you must have all your books. When you buy your notebooks, pens, tabs, sticky notes, and other fun office supplies, you won’t spend very much money. Books, on the other hand, feel like a punch to the stomach, once you see the price tag. A common freshman mistake is buying brand new books, but any college seniors will tell you: no one buys books new after freshman year, unless they have money to burn. Instead, find used copies online. Make sure it’s the same edition as the book you need, and buy it used. There’s no reason to spend that much money on textbooks!
Contact Your Roommate
Sometime during the summer, your school may tell you who your new roommate is. After this year, you’ll be able to choose your own roommate, if you don’t get along with this one. A disastrous pairing isn’t the end of the world. However, you should find ways to clear the air with your roommate before you begin school. Send him or her a few emails, and find some common interests. Lay a few ground rules with each other, like lights-out time, or who gets the top bunk. Stay friendly, and always attempt to compromise. You’ll feel much less jittery if you reach out to your roommate ahead of time.
Thank Your Parents
Your parents do a great deal for you. Sometimes, they do more than you prefer. If you have a helicopter parent, you may feel overjoyed at the chance to get away and do your own laundry. College is a great chance to get away from home and assert your personhood. You’ll enjoy this chance to be free from your parent’s rules. Before you go, however, thank them. Something this official might cue them into the fact that you won’t call them every day. Your parents might seem crazy, but they’re still awesome, and you’ll feel good if you thank them for it.
Say Goodbye to Friends
Your friends have been an important part of your journey so far. If you have a few best friends at home, you’ll probably stay in contact with them. For the most part, however, you’ll meet new friends at college and let some old relationships go. That’s normal, and it may happen to most of your high school friends. Instead of just disappearing, however, you should all get together before you go. If these last few months are your last chance to see each other, you should have a goodbye party, and make the most of your time with your high school friends.
Go On a Trip
Last but not least, you should use your summer before college to go on a trip. Right now, you’re in between seasons. Life is about to change, for the better. What better way to celebrate than with a trip? You could go road tripping with your besties, or find places to see on Florida’s Gulf Coast with your family. A trip can help you celebrate your close relationships, and your coming of age into college years. Your trip can be a big deal, like a visit to London, or something fun and simple, like a camping trip. Whatever you decide to do, make the most of this summer before you head out.