Transitioning from High School Senior to a First Year College Student

Congratulations High School seniors! You have officially hit your last semester of high school. This semester will past by quickly, which means enjoy it while you can. But also remember you need to figure out your game plan for what you need to do after graduation. Now let’s be real, not all of your classmates will be attending a four-year university after high school because in life you have options. You can go into the military, enroll in a community college, or trade school; the choice is yours. You should be in the process of weighing your options at this moment in time and if you’re still deciding on what college to attend for your freshmen year. No worries! I have some tips to guide you to the best school to suit your interest and needs, do’s and don’t.

Don’t Pick A School Just For The Parties. 

In most college movies, you see the students at parties more times than in an actual class room. Yes, there will be a numerous amount of parties on campus (depending on the college/university you go to) so you will have time to have fun. There will always be a party, but don’t go to college for that particular reason. You came to college to get a higher education. Those parties will not pay off your student loans.

Don't Let Cost Scare You

For any student that was accepted into a school with a full-ride scholarship, this part isn't for you. Learning about the cost of tuition for each of your top school choices is very crucial. Be sure to ask the school about their financial aid packages. Have them go over it, twice! Especially if you’re not receiving enough money from FAFSA.

Apply For Scholarships

There are scholarship opportunities throughout this year and next year that you will be able apply for. No MATTER the amount, scholarships will benefit you in the future. Look for a scholarship that fits you and what you want. If you received a scholarship from your top school choices, compare to see which school is offering the most money.

Should You Stay, Should You Go

The cost of tuition varies if you’re leaving or staying in State for college. In most cases, students choose to go away for college to experience new things and meet new people. Others students, believe that staying in state will save them more money. Whatever your choice may be you will be able to have the college experience, find what works for you.

Don’t Bite Off More Than You Can Chew

Just because your body is used to waking up early in the morning in high school (ex. 7:30a.m) doesn’t mean that you will be able to have that same energy in college. Choosing 8:00 a.m. classes sounds like a good plan until you have wake up for that same class every week. Here’s a little hint most colleges want freshmen students to experience what’s it’s like to have an early class, so they let the upperclassmen pick their classes first. Most of the time they choose classes in the afternoon, which indicates that you might have more than one early class. For all you overachievers out there, it’s okay to take more than 15 credit hour courses as long as you’re able to manage your time and mental health. The best thing you could is take 15 credit hours your first semester, and then exceed that amount next semester if you want to.

Prep for the ACT/ SAT

Standardized test are can be stressful for someone that wants a good enough score to be accepted into your dream school. There are a handful of colleges/Universities that will accept you if you didn’t have a high score, but your grade point average has to be excellent during your senior year of high school. In some colleges and universities, such as and Historically Black Institutions, if you did not get a high score on the ACT/SAT but was still accepted into the school you have the chance to take a placement test for your core classes (Math, Reading, Writing). Take these standardized test seriously.

MANAGE YOUR TIME

In my senior year of High school I was a cheerleader, a part of two organizations, and volunteered in the main office every other day of the week. Time management is something you should already know how to do, but if you don't that's okay. You can learn now. In college there will be an event almost everyday on campus, so you need to decide on what’s important your grades or the event. You’ll always have time to socialize and fun.

Now I hope you have done you’re FAFSA for the 2018 Fall semester if you’re planning on attending college after high school. That FAFSA paper work is a very important aspect in college. You have until February 1st, 2018 to complete it. Well wishes to you all and congratulations.

By: Dalia H., Homework Helper

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