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Pre-college Checklist Every College Freshman Needs


Congrats, you’ve made it through high school! Now, it’s time to start preparing for the whirlwind that is college freshman year. 

Undeniably, college is a big transition, and it can be overwhelming to wrap your mind around the things you need to take care of before heading off. To make what comes next a little bit easier, we’ve compiled a checklist of things you should take care of before school begins.

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Check out your dorm situation

Not every college dorm has the same set-up, and it can be nice to know what you’re getting yourself into beforehand. Check to see if your college has a housing guide online — or do one better and go visit in person over the summer, if you live nearby or are already planning to be on campus for orientation.

Register for classes 

Many colleges invite students to some sort of orientation during the summer where they can register for classes. Others have students schedule a phone interview with their advisers before enrolling online. Regardless of your school’s system, you’ll need to sign up for classes before arriving on campus in the fall. Pay attention to email communications from your school so that you can enroll before seats fill up.

Connect with your roommate 

If you’re living with a randomly assigned roommate, exchange contact information and get in touch! It’s nice to have a bit more of an idea about who you’ll be sharing a space with in the coming months. At the very least, add each other on social media and coordinate who’s bringing various items like a TV, a mini fridge or an area rug. 

Go to the doctor

Many colleges require students to get vaccines before they set foot on campus in the fall. Schedule a doctor’s appointment before you head off to avoid having to get last-minute vaccinations on campus. Also, make sure your health insurance plan covers you at school, and sign up for your school’s student plan if it doesn’t. 

Get a calendar

Organization is key to success in college, so why not get a head start? Order a calendar and write down important dates, like when your final exams are, when you have school vacation, and more. Once you get your syllabi, pencil in exams, papers and other assignments to keep yourself on top of things. You can also look into booking plane or train tickets for your breaks if the dates are set in stone. 

Buy/rent your textbooks

If you have classes you’re 100 percent sure you’ll be taking, you may want to order textbooks for them over the summer. Oftentimes, you can save money by buying online from a website like Chegg.com rather than through the campus bookstore — and make sure to order early if there’s summer reading assigned! 

Organize your finances

College students often operate on a strict budget, and it’s important for you to know exactly how much money you have in the bank. Set up any credit cards or bank accounts (there might be a bank branch with ATMs on campus that students often open accounts with), and have a conversation with your parents about what they’re covering vs. what you’re on your own for.

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Under Student Life