By: Travis Ellenberger, a junior at Wilmington College, studying Graphic Design and Media Production.
I bet you have heard that getting ready for college can be really scary. Well it can be because a large part of the college experience is learning to live on your own and being accountable for your actions. For many, the transition from high school to college is too hard to handle. These students drop out after their first college semester or year. There is a way to avoid the culture shock. I avoided this culture shock using these five easy steps.
• The first one is learning to turn in all your assignments on time. Typically in high school teachers will hunt you down until you turn in all of your homework. College is different. If you don’t turn in an assignment, nothing is said, your grade just suffers. In college you are no longer treated like a child, you are treated like an adult. So begin by being accountable for your work early so you will be prepared for college life.
• The next step was to take a writing class. High school is the place to prepare for college. Most high schools or local community colleges offer course that help you learn how to write great papers. Many papers are required in college, so this is an important skill.
• The third step was showing up to class every day. Many classes in college are large lectures classes that don’t take attendance. At first this seems pretty cool, “I don’t have to go to class!” It is, however, more like a test. If you show up every day, you will be ahead of most of the class.
• The fourth step I learned from my grandparents and that was to fill an old jewelry box or shoe box with some money. College isn’t all about grades and accountability. You also have to have money. Situations will arise when you need another textbook, or a CD for a new music appreciation class. You have to be prepared if you are short on cash. So I suggest keeping a secret hiding place for cash in case of emergencies.
• The last step is an optional step but proved to be a huge help, and that was to join a new organization. In the process of preparing for the college life, try joining a new club during high school. College is all about new experiences. If you can adapt to new experiences in high school, it won’t be such a culture shock.
These are a few things I did in getting prepared for my college adventure. I say adventure because it makes it seem more of a choice I am making than a job process. After all, this is the first step to the rest of my life. So make it a fun adventure!