Editor’s Note: Arielle Stratton, founder of Air Media and author of Your College Survival Guide, contributed to this article.
Cary, NC – People say college is the best four years of your life, but for some, it can be a challenging time filled with uncertainty. That’s why Arielle Stratton, founder of Air Media, has put together the ultimate survival guide for any high school graduate about to go off to college.
Buy a Planner and Use It: Between classes, extracurricular activities, homework, social events, and work it can be difficult to keep track of it on your own. You may even go as far as color-coding it or making mini-checklists of what you need to accomplish that week. It’s important to organize it the way that makes sense to you!
Get involved: Your first few weeks at school can be overwhelming, but getting involved in activities you enjoy (or just want to try out!) can help you meet new people and get acclimated to your new lifestyle.
Be yourself: College can be a fresh start. Take advantage of meeting new people and spending time with people you may not normally talk to. This is an opportunity to network with young adults and you be able to leverage those connections in the future.
Start preparing early: Begin talking with your kids in high school about what they enjoy doing, what their strengths are, and what they may want to go to college for. It’s much better for them to narrow down a field or idea of what they would like to do professionally, and pick a major/classes based off that. Transitioning to college can be stressful, but knowing what they want to do after graduation can ease some of that pressure.
Keep in contact, but let them stand on their own: It’s important to make sure your college freshman feels supported, but this is an opportunity for them to find out who they are. If they start to struggle, help guide them to resources instead of fixing the problem yourself. You may also want to talk to your child about setting one day once a week for a phone call or Skype session to check in with each other.