It's not really the "norm" to commute to college. Probably most of your friends went to school somewhere far away. They get to decorate their dorm room with all of these cute accessories, they pack for months to make sure they have all of the items they could possibly need, and are very excited to start their new adventure. You might be a little upset because you don't get to experience all of that, but there are a lot of other things you have to be prepared for as a commuter student. Here are some essential tips for all students who commute to college.
1.) Pack a lunch.
Invest in a nice lunch box and several containers to store all of your food in for the day. Your classes may be stretched out throughout the day, and you could have to eat several meals at school. The cafeteria and food places on campus could get really pricey, so packing a lunch will save you money and you have the option to make it healthy.
2.) Get a car that can accommodate you.
If you are looking for a new car for school, try to go for one that is good on gas. Driving back and forth to school 5 times a week can be pretty costly, so considering a car that gets good gas mileage is a great idea. Also, if you live in an area where the weather is unpredictable in the winter, buying a car with all wheel drive is awesome.
3.) Create a great playlist to listen to.
Purchase an aux cable, or sync your phone with the Bluetooth connection in your car. Put together the perfect playlist for your drive to and from school. You wont have to worry about changing the radio station to find a song you like, and it makes the ride a lot more bearable.
4.) Take advantage of your breaks.
Especially during the first couple years, you may have several breaks throughout your day, you should use them wisely. Take this time to have a snack, catch up on some homework, or go to an event at school.
5.) Join a club at school.
Usually during the first week of school many colleges have a club fair. Take the time to look at everything that's offered. Think about what you're interested in; art club, a volunteer club, a sorority/fraternity, or honors societies. Clubs help you stay involved on campus and meet new people along your journey.
6.) Keep a lot of supplies you may need in your car.
You never know what you may encounter throughout your trek to and from school, so it is always important to keep your car stocked with anything you may need. This could include a change of clothes, a first aid kit, extra school supplies, pain relievers, earbuds, hand sanitizer, extra snacks, etc.
7.) Keep a planner.
It is easy to lose track of your schedule and you can forget important deadlines. Keeping a planner is a great idea. Write down all of your homework, upcoming tests, work schedule, or anything you need to keep track of. You definitely won't regret it.
8.) And lastly, don't forget to have fun.
College is supposed to be an awesome experience in your life. Just because you don't live away at school doesn't mean you can't have any fun. Create some new friendships and take some time for yourself to get out and have a good time.