You are finishing up your senior year; a great college has accepted you and even offered you financial aid to attend, your grades are good, you are in a good dorm and the next four years are set – at least it looks that way. Does your financial aid cover all your college expenses? Probably not. Why settle for having only part of your expenses paid? Look around for local scholarship money, ask your college financial aid counselor if there is anything else you qualify for, develop a profile on a scholarship site and work on decreasing your expenses as much as possible.
Be sure that you check your email daily and respond promptly to all the messages that come from your college. Your orientation date and time as well as dorm check-in time and suggested room furnishings are all details that will become very important. Also, will you have a private room or will you have a roommate? This is one of the biggest challenges that some students will face in college. Brush up on your diplomacy skills. If you have a roommate, you will need them.
Let’s say you are ambitious and responsible and the transition to college is as smooth as silk. You lucked out and landed a roommate who is on track to be made a saint and all your classes seem like a review of your senior classes from high school. Life is good until you get word from home that there has been a tragedy of some kind. It could be a very ill parent, the death of a close friend, a bad accident involving a relative or any other event that could sidetrack you. What will you do? Did you take the time establish a support system at your school? The Academic Affairs office is a one-stop shop to make sure you have a safety net to catch you if there is ever a need. They can direct you to counseling, tutors, writing labs and can alert all your professors with a message from you should you need to leave campus quickly for any reason. I sincerely hope that you never need the kind of help just mentioned, but you don’t want to have to go searching for it if you do.
I know that you have worked hard in highs school to get that elusive acceptance from your favorite college, but this is not the finish line. It is yet another new start, so get out there and continue to compete.