What to do After College Acceptance: 9 Important Steps

You've been accepted into college! Here are some things to do after you've accepted your college admissions offer

Pixabay user mstlion

Congratulations on getting accepted into college! You’ve decided on your higher education path and now you need to know what to do after college acceptance? There are a few things you need to do after you’ve accepted a college’s offer, some more urgent than others. But taking care of everything now can help you avoid last minute chaos as you finish up your final quarter of being a high school student.

Don’t wait too long to do these things after you’ve accepted your college admissions offer

What to do After College Acceptance 

#1. Complete All College Formalities

After you’ve accepted an admissions offer, you will receive a letter from the college informing you about the things you need to complete. Getting started on the various formalities right away can actually impact how happy you are in your freshman year!

This checklist you receive from the school can vary from college to college but they may ask you to

  • Sign up for your orientation date
  • Select a dorm room and roommate
  • Select your courses
  • Meet with your counselor
  • Submit financial documents
  • Send in your deposit
  • Pay tuition, fees, and other expenses
  • Submit health insurance and medical information including proof of vaccinations
  • Select a dining hall meal plan

For your orientation date, dorm rooms, and course selection, you should complete these as soon as possible so you get the pick of the litter!

#2. Contact the Financial Aid Office

You’ll likely have already applied to several financial aid opportunities through the school, government, and various private sources. It can’t hurt to get into contact with your school’s financial aid office just to make sure everything is ready to go and in proper order.

If you have any questions about your finances or paying for college, make sure to talk to them sooner rather than later. They can’t help you if they don’t know there is a problem.

#3. Explore Campus Jobs

If you’ve been selected for work study, you should start looking and applying for positions right away. These jobs fill up fast and spots are not guaranteed. The earlier you apply the more options you will have and the better the chances of finding a job that suits you.

Even if you didn’t receive work study, you can inquire about on-campus jobs. There are also often plenty of choices for students off-campus as well.

#4. Continue to Apply to Scholarships

Scholarships have deadlines year-round. Just because you’ve selected your college doesn’t mean you should stop applying! There are plenty of awards out there that are for graduating high school seniors and current college students. Using a scholarship database can help save you time and stress, too.

#5. Attend Orientation

Almost all colleges have an orientation. You may be asked to visit campus for a day or several days. What you’ll complete on orientation depends on your school. But this event is almost always required by colleges.

What is completed during orientation depends on the school, but it can include

  • Math proficiency exams
  • Language proficiency exams
  • Team building exercises
  • Tours of the most important places on campus
  • Creating your schedule with your adviser
  • Selecting your dorm room and roommate
  • Completing essential paperwork
  • Attending a sexual harassment awareness course
  • Taking your ID photo

If you have any questions about what an orientation at your school includes, you can absolutely ask!

#6. Look Into Campus Activities

The best way to most of your college experience is by participating actively in at least one if not more student organizations or activities. You may only be able to sign up for some clubs after the school year has started, but it’s never too early to start looking into what activities the school offers. Some clubs may actually start promoting their program during your orientation, so keep an eye out.

You can do this by checking out their website and perusing their clubs and extracurriculars page. However, some schools have over 400+ options to choose from. Google can be your friend in these cases. You should also consider following your favorite clubs on social media so you don’t miss an update – especially the first meeting of the year!

#7. Make a Packing List

As your move in date approaches, it’s essential that you complete your packing list! Think about what you want to bring to your dorm room. You’ll also want to consider decoration!

It is notoriously easy to over pack for dorm rooms. They tend to be small, and freshmen, worried they won’t have everything they “need.” It’s a good idea to start with the essentials first and work your way up from there. Starting this list early, too, will ensure you don’t leave any important items at home. You don’t want to under pack, either! This is also a good time to buy those essentials you need, whether for your dorm room or for your classes.

#8. Buy Books and Materials

Almost all courses will require you to buy books and/or materials to complete the class. If you get your book list early, try buying them online to save some money rather than shopping at the campus bookstore.

For books that are shrink wrapped and non-refundable if the wrap is removed, we recommend not opening them until you are absolutely sure you need the book! It’s happened before where professors, on the first class, have stated, “The book is not at all necessary and only a suggestion if you’re interested.” Waiting in these cases can save you hundreds of dollars.

#9. Celebrate Getting accepted into college!

 Of course, don’t forget to celebrate your achievements and your next journey in life. This is a very exciting time and one you’ll remember for the rest of your life. Whether you want to go to a local theme park with friends, go to your favorite restaurant with family, or something else, make sure to take time to celebrate your hard work.

Take the summer to relax a bit, hang out with friends, spend time with family, look into your college’s town’s offerings, and do things you love.

Although the stress of college applications and the wait for acceptance letters may be over, there are still a few things you need to do before you move into your college dorm. We highly recommend completing the above list of “what to do after college acceptance” as soon as possible to save you from additional stress. If you’re concerned about any required documents, timelines, deadlines, or other information, make sure to reach out to your college sooner rather than later so you can get the ball rolling. And, don’t forget to take some time for you this summer!

Are you worrying about how you can afford college now that you’ve accepted their offer? Our Student Loan Finder can help you identify some of the best financial options for your wallet and your education. We also recommend using our Scholarship Search Tool to help you easily and quickly identify awards you personally qualify for.