Happy student sitting in grass reading a book

First College Semester Game Plan

Your first semester of college is a big deal. Leaving home, bunking in a dorm, and managing your own classes are all milestones that help usher you into adulthood, and set you up for future success. So how can you get your first semester off on the right foot? Here are some strategies that should enable you to start your new life in a positive manner.

  1. Do Your Research. The first step toward making your first year of college a success is doing your homework. Yes, this includes doing your homework when classes start, but also do a little advance research about what to expect at school. Tour the campus. Talk to other students. Find out what daily dorm life is like. The more you know ahead of time, the better you can prepare — both in terms of what to bring from home, and what to expect at school.
  2. Read for Fun. If there’s one habit worth developing before you start taking college courses, it’s reading. Read as much as you can. You’re going to have hefty reading loads throughout the higher education process, so the more you develop analytical reading skills, the better prepared you will be for what’s ahead. Read for pleasure to your heart’s content. As a bonus, you’ll be expanding your horizons and developing new perspectives in the process.
  3. Become Familiar With Your Budget. Going to college gets expensive fast. From tuition to room and board, not to mention things such as textbook fees and the costs of eating out from time to time, you easily can spend more than you intended. Think now about options for being able to pay your bills. Whether you get help from parents, student loans, a part-time job or something else, figure out what kind of budget you have before you get deep into the school year and deep into debt.
  4. Shop Strategically for Textbooks. Speaking of money, look for ways to cut costs as much as you can. One key area for saving is in textbook purchases. Shop online, look for used books, consider renting and consider international editions (often the exact same content with a different cover and a lower price). Shop at TextbookRush.com to learn more about finding great deals.
  5. Get Involved. Love sports? Interested in politics? There are tons of clubs and groups on campus that cater to specific interests. Find some that appeal to you, and get involved. Extracurricular activities not only round out your education, but also present great opportunities to make new friends. When you’re new to school, new friends can provide an important lifeline.

With your first semester of school at hand, think strategically about the days ahead. When you make the most of your college experience, you’ll never regret the benefits. Use the tips above to make your college years great with a great start. And when you need quality textbooks, visit TextbookRush.com. Search our site for all of the books you need this year.

About the author

Alison Blankenship
Senior Marketing Manager
I graduated Cum Laude from The Ohio State University (Go Bucks!) with degrees in Marketing and Communications. I’ve been working in the textbook industry for over 10 years, and my work has been featured by College Confidential, Mercy College of Health Sciences, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Pennsylvania Tribune, Montana Technological University, Oregon Live, and other organizations.

I’m an obsessive lover of dachshunds and a passionate reader of books. I’m an avid Pinner and poster, and I’m all over our Facebook page, Twitter account, Instagram and Pinterest.