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  • Beverly Brutzkus

You're in!!! Now what?

Congratulations to all of my students in the high school class of 2021!!

You took pictures wearing your new college swag, posted the big news on social media and submitted an enrollment deposit ….

Now what??

Here are some important items to do before you head off to college in the fall:

Check your college's student portal at least once a week so you do not miss important announcements!

Send your final official high school, dual enrollment and/or college transcripts to your college and make sure they are received.

Submit your housing application and deposit ASAP to ensure you get a spot as some colleges do not have guaranteed student housing. Before you rush off and buy stuff to decorate your dorm room, check to see what you can or cannot have in the residence halls. If you will have a roommate, see what items they will be bringing that you can share (ex: printer, tv…). Don’t go overboard shopping for a dorm room that you will only be in for about eight months. Remember, dorm rooms are small with very limited storage space! (But do purchase the large, blue tote bags from Ikea and stock up on Bed Bath and Beyond coupons!)

Accept your financial aid offers and review the rules for any scholarships or honors that you were awarded. This might include classes to take, a certain GPA to maintain and/or details about reapplying each year.

Send your AP scores to your college - If you’ve taken AP tests this spring you can wait until your AP test scores become available in July and send them all together to the college you choose to attend. Register for Orientation – NOTE: For some colleges, this will be done remotely in 2021. For colleges that have sessions throughout the summer, sometimes going to an earlier session will allow for better class and time options. Before and during the orientation, do the following:

o Schedule an appointment with your advisor - Bring any questions you have about classes, prerequisites, requirements needed for your major, etc.

o Review your college’s schedule of classes or on-line catalogue - Learn the college’s academic policies, classes you’ll need to take, and general education (GE) requirements.

o Register for classes - Bring with you a copy of your high school transcript, AP scores, college transcripts, or placement test scores to make sure you end up in the right classes. Your major advisor can better advise you on classes if you have all this information handy.

o Sign up for any placement tests - Take any practice tests and review any practice materials before you take each placement exam to maximize your scores.

Schedule an appointment with the disability services center to ask about the process and documentation required if you need accommodations. Remember that you will need to advocate for yourself in college!

Submit a copy of your immunization records - Colleges require updated vaccination records and may require certain vaccinations including Covid-19 before you leave for college. Take care of this before you attend orientation and register for classes, so your class registration is not delayed.

Collect and make available medical information you might need. If you’re opting out of the college’s insurance, make sure that your insurance will cover you while you are away at college. Verify that there are doctors and hospitals that are part of your plan in the area. Keep a current copy of your insurance card in your wallet or on your phone.

Identify banks near your college’s campus that can provide free/low-cost banking options for college students. See if those banks are available near your home to ensure you have access to money (without service fees) when you are at college or at home.

Write thank-you notes to the teachers and your high school counselor who wrote your letters of recommendation and supported you during high school and the college. A handwritten note will be very appreciated!

Keep track of important dates such as move-in day, Rush Week, Family Weekend, Thanksgiving break, end of semester and finals week and share those dates with your family.

Make travel arrangements if you will be attending college further away from your home town. Make reservations early on to avoid paying higher rates for airlines, trains, rental cars, and hotels but check refund policies incase classes will be remote or events are cancelled.

Look for a job to earn money for college.

And finally….

- Enjoy the summer between high school and college!

- Spend quality time with friends and family.

Email me at to get my full “Pre-College Checklist and Document List”!

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