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College Ready vs. College Eligible

Erika Dietz
By Erika Dietz |Highland Village, TX

“Are you ready to go?” When this question is asked in my house, I have to go through a mental checklist. Keys? Check. Purse? Check. Sunglasses? The list goes on and on depending on where I am heading. I like to be overly prepared, so that means most of the time I show up looking like Mary Poppins, but hey, I’m ready for just about anything.

What about you? Have you gone through a metaphorical college readiness checklist? I’m not talking about your test scores, GPA, and extracurricular activities. Of course those are all critical components, but I’m talking college ready, not just college eligible.

College readiness is so much more than the knowledge accumulated in the classroom. For many students, going to college means living on your own for the first time and facing head on all of the freedom and responsibility that comes with it. Here are a few of those readiness skills that you should make sure you have packed in your bag before heading out the door.

Get Yourself Out of Bed in the Morning
How you start your morning sets the tone for your day. Do you set your own alarm and get yourself up and moving? If not, now is a great time to start.  When you are away at college, not to mention the working world, it is up to you to get yourself out of bed. Resist the temptation of the snooze button for the eighth time and have a productive morning.

Plan for Success
I’m a huge fan of using a planner. Whether you go digital or prefer good old pen and paper, keep track of your academic and social commitments. It’s easy to get distracted or procrastinate without a plan, which can lead to things piling up. Your time is valuable, so plan how you will use it.

Play Nice with Others
From roommates to classmates, collaborative communication is invaluable. How do you interact and engage with others? You may be a natural born leader, which is awesome, but keep in mind that everyone you work with brings their own set of strengths to the table. You can never go wrong by treating people with kindness and respect.

Self-Advocate
When it comes to interacting with teachers and professors, a little communication goes a long way. If you have questions or do not understand the material, ask! Don’t wait until the end of the semester and then ask, “How do I raise my grade?” Instead, keep open communication with your teachers throughout and don’t be afraid to seek help.

Spend Quality Time with People
I had a great conversation recently about this idea of valuing time as a resource in the same way that we view monetary resources. The truth is, our time is such a valuable resource and we tend to spend it on the things that matter most to us. Before you pack your bags and move into the next phase of life, I encourage you to spend some quality time with family and loved ones. Sometimes, we need to disconnect from our devices and reconnect with the people who mean the most to us.

Now, are you ready to go?

Erika Dietz
Erika Dietz |Highland Village, TX
Hi! I'm Erika Dietz, the College Guru behind Guru Academic Advising. There are over 3,000 colleges and universities out there. So how do you choose one? College can cost upwards of $100,000. So how are you going to pay for...Read More
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