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Going to College

Applying for college is both an exciting and exhausting journey.  You had to plan, research, test, visit, apply and finally wait nervously for the right acceptance letter to arrive; but now you are in.   


The reality of actually going to college can frequently add a whole new layer of worry—What should I bring? Will I make friends? Can I do the work? How will I handle being on my own? etc. College Grazing’s transition section can help.  Here you will find vital information, tips, and sound ideas for a smooth transition from high school to college.  Using the menu bar above you can get ideas for transitioning to college, surviving your first year, and tips for parents. To begin, take the Know How for College self assessment below.  It will identify core skills that you will need for college life.


Know How for College

Your transition to college life will go better if you know how to do each of the core skills listed below.  Read each skill and then determine how well you handle each.  Use the following continuum: 1=I don’t do this well;  2=I am so-so at this;  3= I do this very well. 

For those skills that you feel you don’t do well, seek advice from your family, friends, counselors, or teachers.  You will also find many tips for college success throughout College Grazing.

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I can make and stick to a budget—This means that you can allot your money to cover your living expenses and then stick with your financial plan. This also means demonstrating financial restraint, thinking ahead financially, and paying your bills on time. 

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I can study effectively—This means setting up a schedule for study, finding a proper place to study, focusing your attention, and approaching your study with a positive frame of mind.  (For valuable study ideas and strategies go to

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I can manage my time—This means you can put together a manageable schedule so that you know when things have to be done.  Assignments and tests are noted so that you can prepare for them in a timely way.  Your schedule should allow you to avoid last minute cramming, all-nighters, or missed responsibilities.

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I can manage stress—This means that you have a strategy or things that you do when you are feeling stressed.  Since almost all college students feel stressed at various points, you must have a regimen for stress-reduction.

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I can make sound decisions—This means seeking advice, gathering information, weighing options, and then, after making your decisions in a timely manner, taking responsibility for them.

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I can set manageable goals—This means knowing what you want and setting achievement goals, both short-term and long-term.  Learn to establish goals that are achievable, but also understand that you must be willing to adjust them when necessary. 

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I can make new friends—This means taking advantage of the social opportunities on campus: clubs, study groups, dating, social functions, etc.  You must be willing to extend yourself to others and engage socially so that your campus life has a balance between work and play.  Remember that making new friends takes time.