Now that #CollegeSigningDay is a thing of the past, it’s time to think about what to do during your last few pre-college months.
Finally. After years and years of more grueling work and required readings (a lot of which you despised for the sole reason that they were required), now’s your chance. You’ve got three entire months, hours and hours of free time to bury your nose in books that you picked yourself. This is even a chance to re-read the books that were required; if your teacher hadn’t actually assigned it, maybe you would’ve loved it in the first place!
Learn Foreign Languages
Many students who finished up their high school foreign language requirements by their junior year may think their language days are behind them. But depending on your college and your degree/major, it’s important to keep in mind that you might have a foreign language requirement. Instead of completely forgetting your knowledge, take some spare time to rekindle your memory using either your high school notes (seeing as you haven’t chucked those away like a distant memory) or one of several online resources available. For those who are interested enough, who want to even learn a new language, or who can afford it, Rosetta Stone is an obvious choice. However, there are several other resources to use, like FrenchPod and SpanishPod. Another undervalued resource is listening to music or watching movies in your respective language just to reacquaint yourself with conversations and listening practice!
Talk to Your parents
Yeah, yeah, yeah, you’ve heard this countless times. But if you’re moving far away from your parents, you might not see them for a few months. Especially in the first few weeks of college, you’re going to be so busy getting yourself acquainted to your roommates (if you’re living at school), new classes, and finding your way across a huge campus that a phone call with your parents is just going to keep getting pushed back. Knowing this, spend some real time with your parents; not just watching movies and TV shows with them, but spending personal time with them, because in the coming months, this time will be hard to find.
Registering for classes is probably one of the most exciting things you can do before you start college! Although some colleges might make your first schedule for you to take some of the burden off your shoulders, most allow you to choose your classes. This means that you should plot out the classes for your major (or if you’re undecided, several classes you may be interested in), classes that are General Education requirements, and maybe one easy class so you don’t overwhelm yourself! Remember, freshmen don’t often get their first pick of classes, so don’t rule out 8:00 AM classes; starting your day out early might even mean you end before lunchtime!
And as follows with registration: if your teachers have already posted their syllabi, buying your textbooks online or finding pdfs of them can prove much cheaper than purchasing them in your college bookstore!
Build Your Resume
Or better yet, a Linkedin page. You may have made a resume for your first job or even the Common Application, but college is expensive…that means, if you don’t have one already, you might want to get a job. A lot of students work at local stores and restaurants as waiters and retail reps, but when you’re in college, you’ll want to get more and more involved in the field of your interest. Generally, when you apply to jobs, they’ll ask you for a cover letter and resume just to get an idea of what you’re looking for and whether you’re a good candidate for them. Although you might feel like you don’t have much to put on your resume, you’re a high school graduate! You’ve got skills and knowledge from 12 years of hard work, extracurriculars, and sports. And while you’re at it, build a Linkedin page as well! It’s a good thing to put on your resume (and in your email signature!) to show that you’re up to date, and it’s a very quick reference for people who want to know what you’re up to professionally.
Find a Roommate
If you have the chance to choose a college roommate, this is your time to do so! In the era of social media, there’s bound to be a website or Facebook page where you can connect with people in your year. Maybe it’s on your college’s portal (don’t know what this is? Find out with your college!) or a Facebook group. And even if you’re going to college with people you know, you’re probably still going to be friends with your high school best buddy whether you room with them or not. This could be your time to burst out of your bubble and meet someone new!
If you’ve got the financial means, you should travel somewhere new. Whether that’s somewhere 30 minutes away from where you live that you’ve never gotten to explore or whether it’s someplace like New Zealand or the Middle East, go for it! If you’re into community service, there are a lot of volunteer organizations and groups who will help you raise funds for trips like these if you work with them; volunteering can also result in valuable friendship and experience and it can prime you for the next chapter in your life: college.