One of the greatest senses of relief I have ever felt was the feeling I received when I found out that I had been accepted to Rutgers. It was the end of my high school struggles and everything was good. I could relax, sleep for once, and just not have a worry in the world. Well, I took that and ran with it. To an extreme. I really should have kept up with the admissions process…. There is a lot that needs to be done before move-in. I decided why not make my first blog post outlining a few things that I may or may not have done yet… You can expect to at least be better off than I am a month before move-in if you focus on these items. Also, this gives me a perfect excuse to procrastinate actually doing the things left on this list! It’s a win-win!
- First things first: High School Transcript. In my opinion it’s one of the easier things to do, but you really do need to keep an eye on it. In most cases this will be handled by your guidance counselor but you will probably need to submit a formal request for your transcript to be sent over, and as it was in my case, your counselor may need a gentle reminder to make sure it gets to Rutgers in a timely manner.
- Most of the students who attend Rutgers receive some form of aid. Whether it’s through scholarships, financial aid, or loans, you’re probably getting another one of those senses of relief knowing that there’s even a little less that you have to worry about repaying. The only downside? There’s plenty of paperwork to be done to get it all in order, and take it from me, it’s much more manageable if it’s done a bit at a time, not most of it in the month before move-in.
- Another thing that really shouldn’t be procrastinated (trust me) would be getting in immunization records. I was lucky enough to catch my doctor on a slow day, but I’m sure not everyone will be as lucky. You have to upload them electronically, so make sure you set aside time to get that done. It’s another step for us, but it’s necessary for the records to be recorded properly.
- Another thing that is fairly hands-off on your part that still needs to be supervised is AP scores. If you didn’t tell College Board where to send the scores when you took the test, make sure you do it as soon as the option is available. The sooner that Rutgers can get your scores, the easier it will be to adapt your schedule and make sure you’re in the classes that best suit your skill level.
- I’ll cap off this list with probably the second most important thing (only to be beaten by finalizing the financials). A fan favorite, Housing and Dining. If you plan to live on campus, this should be a priority. Although there is little fear of there not being enough room to house everyone, better off safe than sorry. Now to the dining part. Every first year undergrad that is living on campus is required to have a dining plan. This may be something you worry about because not only is eating vital to life, it’s also a favorite pastime by many, myself included. From firsthand experience, fear not, the meal plan is perfect. By being able to pick your own portions on every meal day to day, you can fulfill the freshman fifteen or (if you have more self control than me) perfectly pick your portions and pass on the weight gain. With healthy options including fruit and vegetables (fresh daily) and for those of us with more of a sweet tooth; donuts, ice cream, and more, you’ll never have to stress about meals.
I know I threw a lot of information out in this list, but don’t worry! Even with me being as behind as I am, I’m still on pace to get things done before move-in. All of these tasks individually are very manageable, but if you start trying to do all of them within a few days, well, you’re a much braver person than I am. Summer is meant to be a break from the daily workload we experience during the year. It’s a time to start gaining excitement for the journey ahead and get ready and rested for all the new experiences. If you stay on task, and manage the paperwork well, you’ll make it just fine and have a great summer while you’re at it. So, a month out, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and my excitement is building at a steady rate. If you can manage to be better at managing your time than I am, (and don’t use blogging as a procrastination method), you WILL be ready for the first step in your Rutgers journey. I can’t wait to move in this September, and I hope from reading this, you’re excited to begin your college journey as well!