One of our Teen Identity alumni, Sarah Graham, just completed her first year of college. Yay! Sarah wanted to share her tips for teens on how to prepare for the first semester of college. If you’re a teen, are the parent of a teen or know one heading off to college, give them the scoop because chances are they are stressing out!
Okay, so as a senior in high school, you’ve probably taken the SAT at least once, and now you’re applying to colleges. You desperately hope to make it into your top choice, but
you’ll tolerate your number two choice if you don’t. No biggie, you can always transfer later.
“Wait a second. I’m not ready for this,” you might be thinking. Don’t worry; I’ve got some tips for you to prepare for college.
First of all…if you’re a junior, take the SAT. This will give you plenty of time to take it again if you (or maybe your parents) are not quite satisfied with your score. Personally, I took the SAT twice: once in January of my junior year, and once in April. Then, after a couple college visits over the summer before my senior year, I decided I wanted to attend Georgia Tech, with UGA as my next choice.
If you have a good GPA and have already taken the SAT (or the ACT, if you prefer that), you should consider applying early to college, fall of senior year. You have fewer essays to write that way, which is always nice. Apply to several colleges. I applied to two, but I wish I had applied to more, just for fun. If you need to rely more on your extracurricular activities and work experience and leadership positions, apply during the regular time in the spring of your senior year.
All right, so you’ve done all that, and you got accepted to your top choice! Congratulations! That’s awesome! Now what…?
Well, after confirming your acceptance, you’ll eventually have to send in your grades from your second semester of senior year…so DO NOT slack off. This is the WORST thing you could do at this point. So that’s finished. Yay. I started college in the summer after my senior year. This was the best decision of my life. I got a leg up on the competition. I met new people, I became familiar with the campus, and I was able to get used to living the dorm life. Also, because summer is much more relaxed and nowhere near as stressful as the regular school year, I was able to start my fall semester with a 4.0, which REALLY helps.
Here’s what you should bring during your first semester of college:
Shower caddy & flip-flops
ONLY IF YOU HAVE ROOM:
A few movies
Too many extra pillows
Bulky clothes (at least until after
fall break, typically)
High school paraphernalia
(including that letter jacket)
(you won’t have room…or time)
Nick-nacks (they just take up
space & get dusty)
Check back for part two of Preparing for College!