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June Checklist for Soon-to-Be College Freshmen: COVID-Adapted

Unstoppable high school grads, here's your COVID-adapted list of June goals.

Shawna Newman

May 27, 2020

#ClassOf2020Strong: COVID didn't stop you from finishing high school strong. Now it's time to knock out these June tasks too.
June Checklist for Soon-to-Be College Freshmen: COVID-Adapted
It’s June, which means that virtual school is over for the summer! If it’s not yet, it will be very soon. It's an understatement to say these last few months have been odd. You navigated some serious pandemic roadblocks and trekked the road less traveled with poise. Your final high school journey was one for the history books. Now that you’re no longer "in" your high school virtual classroom but not yet in college, we know that the excitement of your freshman year is greater than ever before. Honestly, you may be wondering what your college semester will look like this fall too. This is totally normal, as many students are in the same boat. Looking for more COVID-19 student-impact information? Find it here.

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As a soon-to-be college freshman, the rest of the summer is going to be an exciting time! It’s your last summer at home with all of your high school friends--even while observing the Centers for Disease Control's social distancing protocol. You’ve got a lot of arrangements and decisions to make...and now an additional obstacle: adapting these tasks for the COVID-19 pandemic. And while it hasn’t been easy, the Class of 2020 has done a great job continuing to overcome COVID and all of the wacky obstacles thrown your way. We have no doubt you’ll continue to show the Coronavirus who's boss, by adapting to ensure you reach your goals. We’re here to help you out too! While you’re enjoying the sunshine, make sure to keep this Coronavirus-adapted, June checklist for soon-to-be college freshmen in mind:
1. Finalizing Records
Double (or triple) check with your high school guidance counselor’s office to ensure that they have your correct college selection on record so that your final transcripts will be sent to the correct school, along with any scholarships received. Currently email is the best method, as many Americans are working from home. Along with your ask, check in on him/her. Odds are, the friendly email will bring some sunshine their way. We could all use a friendly hello and check in during times like these.
2. Give Thanks
Now that your college path is underway, it’s important to take time to acknowledge those who helped you accomplish your goals. Considering most of us have gotten back to a “simpler way of life,” try spreading joy and sharing your thanks via U.S. mail. Send well thought out thank you notes to anyone who helped with your college applications and admissions process – including teachers who wrote recommendations, family friends who may have made phone calls, those who proofread your essays, etc.
3. Financial Aid
Follow up with your college’s financial aid office to ensure all paperwork is complete – you don’t want to learn that any paperwork was ignored too late and miss out on any financial aid opportunities. Remember that June 30th is the deadline for filing your Federal FAFSA form! This year there has been a significant drop in FAFSA applications. This means there may be more funds financial aid funds available now. Helpful Tip: Many college financial aid officers are busy right now (thanks COVID). We recommend you communicate via email and avoid the phone calls. This may bump you up in their response queue too!
4. Arranging Future Finances
It’s smart to open a student checking and/or savings account that’s local to your college campus. You’ll have easy access to banking services (think: no ATM fees) and they often offer promotions for students.
5. Friends Forever
Spend time with your high school buddies, even if that’s with Facebook’s new Messenger Rooms. Though they will always be your friends, you will all be in different areas, often around the country. Take this time to enjoy each other’s company while you can!
6. Research Greek Life
Speaking of friends, you may start researching Greek life at your college campus. There are a lot of benefits to going Greek such as making new friends, but it’s not for everyone—and that’s okay. It’s nice to do a bit of research on your own. Many students have a lot of questions, and concerns, about Greek life. This article will shed some light on Greek life and answer some of those questions you may be too embarrassed (but really shouldn’t) to ask. Dig in and see what it may be like on your soon-to-be college campus!
7. Dorm Shopping
The campus living situation may still be up in the air, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start planning. Get on your “COVID thinking hat” and make a list of things you’ll need that are unique to this year. We’re thinking re-usable face masks, cleaning supplies, Lysol wipes, hand sanitizer, backdrop supplies for all of the virtual classrooms you may have and etc. You ARE the Class of 2020—possibly the most adaptable set of high school seniors the United States has had. Once you talk to your future roommate about what he or she may be bringing, the two of you can divide the list of items that need to be purchased. When you know what you’re responsible for, you can start shopping for your portion, plus anything else you’ll need like XL twin sheets or may want, like decor items.
8. Explore Potential Career Paths
If you’re unsure of what you’d like to study in college (as most students are), summertime is perfect for exploration! Do your research and be sure the major you pick pays well (you may have student loans to pay pack). Contact some business professionals in fields you’re interested in to talk to them about their careers and volunteer with organizations or at events which share common interests as your potential career paths. This summer is all about discovering who you are and where your passions and career path may potentially meet.
9. Summer Savings
Set up a summer savings plan, which allows you to start saving for college as you work this summer. You can find a job from employers in your zip code with our Monster supported, Part-Time Job search tool. This extra money will surely come in handy your first year in school! Save a portion of your earnings now can help you reduce the cost you may need to borrow for college expenses later and not borrowing is always a better option if you have it!
10. Apply for Scholarships
As a general rule, applying for scholarships should always be on your to-do list! As a starting point, check out this list of 10+ College Scholarships You Can Apply for Today.

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