Ten tips for a smooth transition to college
Transition to third level can be tricky but with planning it can be exciting
7Ask for help if you find yourself in difficulty.
It is essential to seek help and advice as early as possible if you find yourself out of your depth, whatever the problem. Most higher education institutions operate an open-door policy where students are free to pop in for a chat and advice if they are uncertain or feeling a little lost.
Usually issues are quickly resolved but not seeking advice in time could be detrimental to successfully completing this important first year of study. Numerous students before you will have encountered the same issues and college staff will be able to guide you to help you through them.
8Manage your budget.
Money management is increasingly problematic for students at third level due to the economic situation. Part-time work is more difficult to find so advance planning is crucial.
Have a realistic expectation of what costs may be involved such as registration, travel expenses, rent, books, food, clothes, socialising, etc and try not to run up unnecessary debt.
9 Start your accommodation search early.
In recent times the cost of accommodation has reflected the economic downturn in some areas – usually the further out from the college you are, the more cost-effective things become. The best bargains are always snapped up by those who begin their search early.
10 Enjoy and have fun.
University life is to be enjoyed not endured. It is a fantastic opportunity to broaden horizons, make new friends and explore some of the many opportunities that come your way. You may consider taking a year abroad with support from the college or it may simply be that you get immense enjoyment from taking up a sport or joining a society that you never had the opportunity to experience before. The possibilities are endless. Now that you have completed your Leaving Certificate you can look forward to taking the next steps on your educational journey. Best of luck.
Dr John McGinnity is admissions officer/assistant registrar at NUI Maynooth