Many graduates refer to their time in college the best time of their lives. There are, however, certain steps future students must take to ensure that they are ready. Here are a few things to keep in mind before classes start:

What major? 

Choosing a major is an important consideration. Finding something you love to do is a good first step, but it is import to consider what you can do with the degree. Philosophy, English and other liberal arts degrees may be fun and rewarding, but the job prospects are not particularly strong unless you want to work in academia. Sometimes, it is worth considering other fields with a more defined post-graduation career path.

Fortunately, colleges typically require four semesters of general education courses, and the first two years of college can be spent taking these courses and considering your major. Further, many colleges have courses and resources dedicated to helping undecided students find the right degree for them.

How to pay for it? 

College is not cheap. Between tuition, housing, books and having some fun between classes, the costs can add up. Carefully ensuring that you are equipped to handle the necessary expenses can be a challenge. Further, if you feel that you will have to work to pay your bills, finding a job as early as possible can help. It is also worth considering taking out student loans. Fortunately, there are tools that can help you calculate your needs.

If you decided to sign up for student loans, there are online resources that can help you calculate how much you need to borrow. These tools can help you plan your expenses and calculate how long it will take to repay these loans.

Where to live? What to eat? 

Dormitories and other on-campus living quarters are great for new students. They help you meet fellow students and form friendships that are likely to last throughout your college career. For some, however, it might be worth looking into off-campus locations if you would rather live with friends you already know. Some of these options might be cheaper than living on campus.

Many new college students neglect to plan for how they are going to eat. Meal tickets can be a cost effective way to eat, but online resources can help you find even cheaper, and sometimes healthier, options.

With careful planning and a bit of research, you can help ensure that you are starting college the right way. Now, prepare to study hard and have a great experience!

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