If you’re in high school, and you’re looking at colleges right now, you’re probably excited. Maybe you’ve thought about what you want to be once you reach adulthood, and getting a degree is one step closer to that goal. Even if you’re not sure precisely what you want to accomplish with your life, you’re about to do something you’ve never done before.
You shouldn’t act recklessly in college, though. If you do, you might waste all that tuition money, and you and your parents don’t want that. Here are some practical tips to which all college students should pay attention.
Don’t Lose Your Financial Aid
You’ll want to get as much financial aid as you can because you or your parents are covering the remaining tuition costs without it. You can get financial assistance through:
- Work-study programs
Any of these financial aid methods depend on you acting a certain way. For instance, if your state or the federal government gives you a grant, you need to maintain a particular grade point average if you’re going to keep on getting that money each year or semester.
With scholarships, it’s the same. You have to keep getting good grades, which means you need to study hard and avoid too many distractions.
With work-study programs, you have to do an on-campus job, and the school will cut down on your tuition costs. If you want to keep getting that discount, you need to show up for work every day and do the job well. You can’t slack off or sleep in when you need to be scrubbing dishes in the dining hall or working in the library.
Don’t Let Romance Distract You
Maybe you dated in middle school or high school, but now that you’re in college, you feel like the time for a real romance might be right. It’s true that some individuals meet in college and either marry or enter into a long-term partnership. However:
- You want to avoid any heartbreak
- You don’t want a romance that becomes a study distraction
There’s nothing wrong with doing some college dating, and you might very well meet that special someone there. If so, that’s great. At the same time, you need to make sure that you prioritize your schoolwork.
You should be able to date while still studying and attending all your classes. If you find that your romantic life is pulling you off course, you need to do a priority reassessment.
Avoid Too Many Wild Parties
You should also try to avoid any huge parties and the fallout from those. Some individuals go to college wanting nothing more than to party. They might try to pledge a fraternity or sorority for that reason.
Just like college romance, if you let parties pull you off track, you’re wasting your money. Maybe you have time for some socializing, but huge, blowout parties lead to hangovers and possible police involvement, and you want to avoid both those things.
If you are pledging a fraternity or sorority, make sure you learn about the organization and understand its reputation. If they exist only for debauchery, that’s probably not the best place for you. If that’s the only reason you’re in college, you’re wasting your money or your parents’ money.
Make Some New Friends
Making some new friends is a great college experience in which many people engage. You might meet some friends at school with whom you stay in touch for the rest of your life.
In college, you can meet people from many diverse backgrounds. You might meet people with different religious backgrounds, from other locales, that have various sexual orientations, etc.
Colleges often celebrate diversity, and you can learn about all kinds of people. Some of them will probably hold differing viewpoints from yours.
You may not agree with what all of them think and believe, but you’ll probably enjoy learning all about them, and you’ll likely engage in some lively debates. College is a place that collects all types and puts them in close contact with one another.
This is a time in your life that you will probably enjoy and will look back on fondly. You can make a whole new friend group that should color your life experiences quite a bit.
If you do all these things, you ought to have a positive college experience, and you’ll get the most out of your tuition money. You’ll get yourself ready for your next life stages as well.