Category: College Students
If college is the gateway to the real world, then high school is the long highway that precedes it. After four years of high school, you might feel as though you are totally unprepared for the challenges of higher education. Although pumped-up academic standards are a big part of the college transition, being a college student also calls for independence, maturity, and responsibility.
Everyone has the expectation that going to college freshman year will be fun times in a comfortable room, where your best friend is your roommate, and everyone on your floor will be the greatest people you’ve ever met, right? At least, that’s how the movies tell us it will be.
As the caps come off and the graduation celebrations begin, many high school graduates lookforward to the unbridled freedom of the summer before college. After twelve plus years of non-stop academic and extracurricular responsibilities, this summer provides a much-needed chance for students to unwind after a hectic year of college applications and before an exciting freshman year. Rather than sleep through the hot summer days, use your time to prepare for the year ahead.
College movies throughout the years have offered insights and advice about college admissions and the college experience. Classic films portray students navigating applications, freshmen year, and the college social scene. While many movies include a sound moral, some plot sequences may be questionable to audience members.
Did you know that at some schools you can take a classes on Harry Potter, how to watch the TV show The Wire, and even one on Lady GaGa’s (actual) fame? Many colleges these days are offering interesting course selections that take pop culture and familiar icons and use them as tie-ins to deeper, more intellectual ideas and lessons.
Making new friends and getting involved on campus starts with exploring your interests. Student clubs and organizations are a great way to meet new people and build on the skills and interests that you already have.
For high school sophomores and juniors, fall marks the first steps in the college search process. Many schools have a mid-October fall break, and students and families often use this time to go on college visits. At IvyWise, our team of expert counselors always stress the importance of the college visit. Not only does it give you the opportunity to show demonstrated interest, a factor that admissions officers take into consideration when reading applications, but it also gives you the chance to get a feel for campus life first-hand.
The fall semester is here, and with it comes the day new students look forward to the most, and the day some parents dread the most: college move-in day! For many incoming freshmen, this is the first time they will be living away from home, and the task of getting everything they need to survive in only a few boxes can be a tricky one.
I led a relatively sheltered life before leaving for college. As an only child whose parents wanted to ensure that I remained focused, I had been enrolled at an all-girls school for seven years. To their horror, I ultimately chose to attend the farthest school I applied to—Washington University in St. Louis, a shocking 16-hour drive from my home in New Jersey.
One way to feel mentally prepared for your new adventure is to get physically prepared. First, get organized: make piles of things to bring, things to store, things to toss, and things to give away. Most schools have suggestions on their websites of things to bring, as well as those that you should leave behind. This is a great exercise to do with a parent who may be more objective about what you will and won’t need at school.
Shopping for dorm décor will help you picture where you will be living and get you excited about furnishing your own space. Decorating your dorm room according to your own taste and style will help make it feel like home, which may also ward off any home-sickness. Don’t forget the necessities, including extension cords, cleaning supplies and laundry detergent. These basic items, which were always just there before, signal the realities of independence. If you haven’t already, now is a great time to ask your parents questions, learn basic housekeeping, bookkeeping and checkbook-balancing skills, and start practicing good living habits (like keeping your room tidy!).