Don’t let procrastination sneak up on you in 2016.
Many of you will be starting school in a few months’ time. While it may seem a long time away, the weeks will fly. Before you know it, you’ll be pulling up to your university’s campus.
Prep now for what’s coming later this year. Use our checklist below to help make sure that you’re ready to start your new academic career.
1. Make sure that your school onboarding process goes smoothly.
Contact your university admissions office to ensure that all of your student documents are in order – including your immunization records, your student visa status, and your financial certification form.
Contact your university admissions office to make sure that your school email account is set up and that you are able to register for classes.
2. Decide where you want to live.
If you don’t already have a place to live, now is a great time to make plans about accommodation.
Connect with your university admissions office to see what resources they can provide. They will be able to give you information on your options for on-campus temporary housing, on-campus permanent housing, and off-campus housing. They also should be able to tell you what neighborhoods to look in and what you should expect to pay in rent.
3. Create a budget.
Outline how much you want to spend every month on housing, social activities, education-related activities, travel, and miscellaneous expenses (and try to stick to it!). If you need assistance making international payments, check out services such as Flywire.
4. Learn about your classmates.
This could be especially helpful if you are looking for a roommate, or if you just want to meet new people.
See if you can access information about your new classmates through social media or your school’s website. You can start connecting with your classmates now and arrange to meet them in person once you’re on campus.
5. Decide what classes you want to take.
Choices can be overwhelming, so consider researching some of the classes you’re interested in before you enroll.
Speak to other students and faculty to hear their thoughts on which classes and professors they have found to be the most helpful.
See if there are evaluations of courses and professors online to help you determine your selection.
6. Think about how you want to spend your time outside the classroom.
There are many opportunities to connect with students outside of a traditional school setting. Plus, you may find that you just need a break.
Are you planning on working while you’re in school? If you have secured a part-time or full-time job, make sure to factor that into your schedule realistically so that your coursework does not suffer.
See what student groups interest you. You have many options, and these groups offer great opportunities to explore or develop interests and meet new people.
7. Keep a record of what interests you.
Start a file of everything that interests you that you learn about in class. Day-to-day classwork may consume your brain, and you may forget about a great potential thesis topic or job lead down the line if you don’t keep a record.
8. Start thinking about next steps.
Time really does go faster than you think. Get a head start now!
Make an appointment with your university’s career services early to discuss options for internships and jobs.
Of course, there are more steps to take to ensure a successful year at school, so communicate with your university actively throughout your time as a student.
You can also check out USA Funds Life Skills coursework on our website to help with things like creating a budget (for your time and money), repaying your student loans, and finding a job.
We’re excited to see what 2016 will bring us all. Have a great year ahead!