Your senior year is coming to a close, and many of your friends have locked in their final college selection. But if you’re still narrowing your choices, or feeling unprepared for the transition, these five tips can help streamline the rest of the process.
Apply for a few more scholarships. Even if you feel that your financial aid package is well rounded, search for private scholarships anyway. Many of these go unclaimed each year, so you might as well give it a shot. It never hurts to have extra money for books, supplies, unexpected expenses, or just a new pair of walking shoes to get around campus.
Learn budgeting skills now. Speaking of money, you’ll be on your own soon. One of the roughest parts of the transition from high school to college, for most students, is learning to budget and manage money. If you don’t already have one, ask your parents to help you open a checking account and get accustomed to managing it. If you have a job, save a bit of each paycheck in a savings account, for unexpected expenses during your first semester at college (trust us, they will happen).
Unsubscribe from email lists. If you’ve crossed a school off of your final list of possibilities, go ahead and unsubscribe from their email list. Your inbox will be a bit less cluttered, and you’ll be less likely to have last-minute second thoughts about a school you rejected for good reason.
Put together a resume, and ask for recommendation letters. You might need a resume to apply for jobs on your new campus, or for other future opportunities. Craft a solid resume now, and ask one or two high school teachers for recommendations as well (these might also help with those scholarship applications).
Don’t stress over your major. If you haven’t chosen one yet, don’t let the pressure get to you. There are plenty of core classes you can take during your first year, that will apply to just about any degree program. Make a list of the basic courses you need to cover, and include a few subjects that have always interested you. Work those into your schedule during the first two semesters. At worst, you’ll just have some fun and learn something new. But you might discover a field of study that leads to your eventual major.