Image from Pexels.

Image from Pexels.

Finals are done, prom is over, and the final graduation cap has flown through the air. You’ve made it through high school! First of all, congrats! Chances are there were some really good times and some not so great times but you made it! You’ve completed your applications and hopefully you’ve chosen a college that you’re psyched to go to come fall. Now the only thing between you and college is those couple months of summer which, when I was going through it, seemed like a strange time. You’re not a high schooler any more but you’re still not quite a college student till you’re on campus that first day. So how should you spend this in-between time? Here are a few suggestions on how you can make the most of the summer between senior year of high school and freshman year of college!

1. Spend time with friends.

Spend as much time as you can with friends during the summer because chances are, if you’re all going to different schools after you graduate you won’t see them as often. This isn’t to say that you won’t still be friends after you all leave/ start going to different colleges (I’m two years into college and my high school friends are still some of my closest friends and make going home from breaks a blast!) but your friendships will definitely change. Going from seeing your friends every day for four years to only once every few weeks is a major adjustment so use the time you can during the summer before freshman year to go on as many adventures with them as possible. Take that road trip to the beach or just enjoy your weekly movie night hangouts! And make a plan for how you want to stay in touch once everyone is back in school.

2. Spend time with family.

On a similar note, spend time with family as well. College life is busy and chances are, even if you’re still living at home throughout college, you’re going to be seeing less of your family during the week. So go out to your family’s favorite restaurant or just go through some old photo books or home videos with your family before you start this next exciting chapter of your life!

3. Read (or take up another hobby) for fun.

Maybe this is just me but I never felt like I had time to read for fun while in high school. Reading two or three books for English class on top of weekly textbook reading for other classes just made it impossible save for some relaxed weekends. The summer between senior and freshman year, I took some time to read for fun and make a dent in my “to read” list. Looking back, it was nice to take some “me time” in the midst of everything that was going on so find a favorite activity (like yoga or painting or bird watching (the last one is kind of a joke but if that’s what interests you, go for it!)) and stick to it over the summer, you’ll be glad you did.

4. Make some money.

If you can get a job, take it because chances are you’ll have a lot of expenses that you haven’t even thought of coming up and having some extra savings is never a bad thing. From small purchases like dorm accessories and snacks, to larger ones like textbooks and a new laptop, chances are you’ll be spending more than you normally would in preparation for freshman year.

5. Explore your hometown.

Take some time to explore your hometown, even if you are not moving away for college. Does your hometown have that one weird museum that you’ve never been to? Or maybe there’s a shop you’ve always wanted to visit but never had a chance. Gather up your friends and make a day of it! Some other fun ideas could be having a scavenger hunt around town or just going to all the “must see” sights.

6. Prepare for the upcoming school year.

When I was preparing for freshman year, I had a to-do list a mile long. Everything from doctor’s appointments to class registration (including placement tests) to laptop and clothes shopping was packed into the little less than three months I had between the day I graduated high school and the day I left for college. I tried to keep as on top of this list as I could (while also seeing friends and watching a ridiculous amount of Netflix) so that I wasn’t crunched for time come August or forget to do anything important. Try to get together a list of all that you and your family have to do and work through it steadily over the summer.

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