8 Tips Every H.S. Graduate Should Know Before Heading to College

Guest Post By: Iris Yuan
You’ve taken all the tests, accepted your college admissions decision, and received
your high school diploma. Now what? The summer between high school and college
is a nostalgic one, and by all means, you deserve to enjoy these last few
months after getting through high school. But if you’re the first kid off to
college and your family doesn’t know what to expect, it’s useful to know some
tips about college life, budgeting, and more. Below are 8 tips on how you and
your parents should prepare, and what to expect about transitioning to your new
home in the fall.

Look up past syllabi for your classes. Chances are, you’re already enrolled or
have looked into classes to take in the fall. Most professors have past years’
websites or syllabi archived. Reading the course syllabi as detailed by the
professor, instead of the short description provided by college administration,
can often give you a more specific picture of what the course is really about.
You can usually find them as PDF files online.

Order dorm furniture, textbooks, and other supplies for discounted prices
online. Take advantage of college student discounts from popular electronics
and textbook providers. By August, you should have a rough list of things you
should buy…

… But don’t buy, or bring, too many things with you. Moving is a pain,
especially if college is a flight or a coast away. You might be tempted to take
your whole room with you, but this can be impractical, especially if you have
more than one roommate and space is tight.

Look up freshman programs ahead of time so you don’t miss out. Whether it be
clubs, Greek life, or research, many on-campus opportunities recruit at the
beginning of the school year. For academic programs, there could also be fall
deadlines. Get updated through Facebook pages or email listservs.

Don’t worry about not making friends in college. Be friendly, make an effort,
and be open-minded about the different attitudes and backgrounds of your new
roommates, floormates, and classmates. Join clubs to find people who share your
interests. Be active. You never know where on campus you’ll find your closest friends.

(Also, be prepared to watch a lot more
YouTube videos.)

Don’t be afraid to get lost, literally and metaphorically. College is for
exploration, and you often can’t determine what piques your interests if you
don’t take (safe) risks. You’ll learn much more being outside your comfort
zone. You can also use your free time now to take up a new hobby – try a

music tutor or a programming tutor to learn how to code.

Be prepared to handle peer pressure on a new level. Underage drinking, drugs,
partying… don’t do anything you aren’t comfortable with, especially if an
elitist Greek system is involved. It’ll serve better in the long run to have
good friends who understand your boundaries, rather than streams of drunken
acquaintances whose names you can’t remember.

Lastly, spend as much time with your family as you can. Even if you are thirty
minutes away or right around the corner, you’ll be on your own in terms of your
day-to-day schedule, the friends you choose, and the activities or clubs you
join. You’ll be surprised how much you’ll appreciate being home after you’ve
left the nest.

Iris Yuan is an Education Consultant at Tutorspree.com, a site that works
nationwide to rebuild tutoring and spotlight educational solutions. Feel free
to reach Iris at iris@tutorspree.com and visit @Tutorspree on Twitter.


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