The Summer Before College

girl-writing-in-notebookThere are things that you need to accomplish before you go to college so that when you arrive you’re organized and ready to take on new challenges.

Below are some tips to help you get started:

  1. Fill out forms before the semester starts, including placement exams, payment plans, roommate assignments, course selections, etc. Make sure you have all of the paperwork completed before June or as soon as possible so your summer can be as stress–free as possible.
  2. Start gathering supplies. If you’re living on campus, the perfect time to start shopping for your dorm is the summer before college. Make a list with your parents or your roommate to figure out who’s bringing what and what’s left to bring.
  3. Ask your parent or guardian about your health insurance and what it covers. Find out what your co-payments are for office and urgent care visits and whether or not you need a referral from your primary care doctor to see another health care provider. Get your own insurance card or make a photo-copy of your parents card that you can take with you to college.
  4. Set up an appointment with your primary care provider (PCP) and any specialists you see. Talk with your PCP about medications you’ll need for the school year and how to get refills, along with any shots or yearly physical you may need before you go to college. If you have a chronic medical condition and you’re going to school out of state, make sure that you get a copy of your medical records and make a follow–up appointment or ask your PCP for a referral to a local specialist.
  5. Learn to do laundry. If you haven’t already figured this out,ask a parent/guardian or an older sibling to show you.
  6. Get to know your school better. Look at the activities, clubs, and volunteer opportunities they offer, and locate the student health services, closest emergency room, local restaurants, stores, etc.
  7. Build your résumé. If you don’t have a résumé, take time to create one, then add to it as you gain new experiences. Another good idea is to set up a LinkedIn account to help manage professional contacts.
  8. Think about expenses. Money management is a huge part of the transition to college. Now is a good time to talk with your parents about expenses and a budget. Try to save what you can during the summer so you will have spending money during the school year.