So, it’s time. Time to fly the nest and head to college.
Many recall their college years as some of the best years of their lives. And for good reason.
The memories you’ll gain, the friends you make and the learning you’ll do both in and off-campus are invaluable.
That’s not to say it won’t come without its problems, challenges and a few pre-departure nerves.
However, with some good planning and pre-lecture knowledge, you can alleviate some of those nerves.
So let’s dive in and check out these nine tips before starting a college degree.
1. Organize Your Accommodation
Other than your finances, sorting out where you’re going to sleep and who you’re going to be living with is the most important factor before starting college.
Whether you’re living on campus in dorms/halls or in private accommodation, this can likely make or break your entire first year.
Think carefully about where you want to live and with who. Many colleges offer men, women or freshers only accommodation options so it’s well worth exploring these choices.
2. Sort Out Your Finances and Balance Your Budget
This is the big one. Figuring out the exact costs and how you (or your parents) are going to pay for your education is crucial.
Speak with your financial aid office and get a clear idea of what you need to pay for the college itself and the exact allowances you have to spend on living.
You can even take out private college loans that can be a better option than through your college directly.
Check out some of the best private college loans to find out more.
There are also some options for student loan refinance which can aid many when in need.
3. Learn Time Management
A super important skill for life, and not just in education.
Learning how to manage your time effectively is going to make sure you get work done and meet deadlines as well as enjoy your time on campus.
Read up on productivity, buy a work planner and get on top of your time.
You’ll be amazed at what a little thought in this area will do for your education and career.
4. Social Skills
Your college period can be the most amazing time in your life, you’ll meet some amazing people, some of which you’ll remain friends for life.
For this to happen, however, you’re going to need to get social.
After all, you don’t want to be a recluse in your dorm right?
Even if you’re an introvert, the opportunities to socialize are abundant and so you can pick and choose when to hang out and get to know people.
This can be the people you share living space with, students on your course and people you meet at freshers’ events.
5. To Work or Not Work?
This is largely going to depend on your social situation.
If you’re someone having to work to pay for college, then it can be very difficult to manage your time and find a balance of earning money, studying and socializing.
However, you can use it to your advantage. You’re going to have money as well as the extra opportunity to meet new people and do something other than study.
6. Get Involved
The first few weeks in the fresher’s period are only going to happen once.
Take it as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Attend events, party, meet people and get into the college spirit.
After this period, things do get more serious as your studies progress so enjoy it!
7. Pre-Reading and Class Preparation
You can never do enough pre-reading.
Any pre-reading material you are given before your first lectures, read it.
You don’t necessarily have to read it word for word, cover to cover, but at least get a general idea of a subject/topic before diving into a lecture.
This will mean you’re not left treading water when your lecturer brings up a topic and expects you to write an essay about something you’ve never heard of.
The same goes for any class preparation. Do anything to make the learning process easier for you.
8. Know Where To Get Help
Be sure to know where you can get help for anything.
Whether it be financial or educational, locate where the offices are and gather contact details of where to get help should you need it.
9. Get Orientated
Before your first lecture, make sure you get orientated with both your campus and the local area.
The last thing you want is to be stressing on day 1, wondering where the heck your first classroom is.
As for the local area, take a walk and get to know where everything you need is.
Tips Before Starting A College Degree – Summarized
So, there we have it.
Nine tips you can use before starting a college degree.
Although it can give your butterflies you’ll often find once you’ve got the big ones out the way—your accommodation and finances, most other things will just fall into place…
But, follow these tips and you’ll be even more likely to have the most awesome, smooth and memorable introduction to college life.