With high school seniors entering their final semester of high school before packing their bags and heading to college, it is easy to forget to prepare for such a huge change! There are several tasks to complete and things to do before making the big jump to college, especially if you are heading out of town. Here is a list of 10 things high school seniors should do before college.
In no particular order:
10. Double check that your college has your financial aid package on file! During the summer after high school graduation, take some time to complete financial aid worksheets for your specific college if they are available or incomplete. If financial aid does not cover your entire tuition, make sure to plan for ways to make up for the difference.
9. Create a resume! Though you are just entering college and may feel as though a resume is not necessary just yet, it will help to become familiar with creating resumes and formatting them correctly. It will be beneficial to include high school activities and awards that you have received so far, as well as any interests you may have. Also, if you do have any professional experience, be sure to include this too! It’ll be good to have one to reference during the year when school starts.
8. Be prepared to fill out FAFSA soon! Find and compile your parents’ tax returns, W-2 forms, and other records of money, since having all of these in one place will make the tedious job of filling out the application easier. Most importantly, start early and have patience while filling it out, as you do not want to rush through the app and make silly mistakes.
7. Consider getting a job over the summer! The summer heading into college is a great time to start saving money, and one way to do this is by getting a summer job. There are so many out-of-pocket expenses in college that it becomes challenging to manage your money, and having extra spending money set aside will be sure to alleviate some of this stress.
6. Make a budget! Having a plan of how to spend and save your money will come in handy when you are faced with the challenge of paying for fun things like going out on the weekends with friends to museums, restaurants, and in general other expenses that may come up.
5. Do some research for your new classes, especially if you are registering for them before you reach campus. Oftentimes, there are college evaluations of the course and professors that are helpful in determining if a particular class is the right fit for you. Utilize these resources!
4. Become familiar with campus resources! So many colleges have extensive resources like tutoring, career advancement, religious and spiritual outreach, community outreach, and several other branches that allow you to become involved with your school. Take advantage of these!
3. Try to visit your college campus if you haven’t yet! Though you’ll be getting there soon enough, seeing your college campus and being able to explore it before everyone returns can be calming for your nerves.
2. Write thank you notes to your teachers and any other mentors you had in high school! It is important to remember and thank everyone who has helped you to get to where you are!
1. Enjoy your last summer before college!