Well, May 1 (see below) – the National Reply Date has come and gone.  Did you make the right decision?  You truly will not know until you arrive on campus in the fall and begin your courses.

Even though you may think the decision is over, the work is NOT.  There is plenty to do between now and the fall to ensure success.

Per, start with this to do list.

You’re almost there… Here’s a last To Do list to make sure you tie up all loose ends before the graduation celebrations begin:

  • Go back and thank all the people (including your parents and teachers) who made this possible for you.
  • Inform all other schools where you have been offered admission that you will not be enrolling. Remember you may be holding onto someone else’s spot.
  • Start learning more about the school you will attend for the next four years by forming relationships with classmates via social media.
  • Complete financial aid documentation by the designated deadline.
  • Make arrangements to send your final high school transcript; further, be sure you finish your last semester of high school strong.

Granted, the above list is relatively easy, but there are many other tasks you may wish to consider.


While each university may do orientation differently, you will participate in a program designed to orient you to the institution you chose and select classes for the fall semester.  If you have not already done so, take the time to review the university catalog and the online schedule of classes.  During your orientation, you will probably meet with an advisor – while they will “advise” you will have a better outcome if you come prepared.

What credit do you have from your high school work?  Do you have Advanced Placement (AP) credit or dual-credit from taking courses at a community college?  Do review both the major and general education requirements via the catalog.


While you may think it is NOT your worry about paying for college, think otherwise.  Yes, your parents will help (I hope), but you are NOW and adult.  Ask questions of the university financial aid office during the summer before the tuition bill is due.  As stated above, did you complete the documentation and accept or decline your scholarships, grants, and/or loans?  Aside from the big-ticket items (tuition, room & board), how will you cover the costs of books, supplies, and incidentals – Starbucks, late-night pizza, etc.


What do you plan to do for the summer?  Yes, you should take time to relax and enjoy to a certain extent, but more importantly, do something productive!  I will suggest employment – make some money.  Regardless, do something that will prepare you for the upcoming fall semester.  Consider taking a course in the summer at an area community college to get ahead and keep your brains cells working; as a future architecture student, learn some of the software that you will end up using during college.


The most effective method to ensure academic success during college is become familiar with the many resources available to students.  Spend some time each day reviewing the website of the university to learn more about difference resources / offices.  Who do you contact if you need help with your studies?  What about if you are not feeling well?  Are there activities to keep you active or connected, i.e, intramurals and student organizations.

Again, congratulations on your decision by the May 1 deadline; even though it feels over, it is NOT.  Take full advantage of the summer and do what you must to prepare and succeed for college.


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