This blog is the first in a special 2-part college series. Feel free to share with someone who may be entering college or currently a student.
It has been reported that approximately 10 - 40% of students who have been accepted into college fail to enroll in college classes after graduation.
This is referred to as the “Summer Melt”. Many students “melt” away during the summer break because of challenges they now face that they may not have been expecting. Some of these challenges can be financial, motivational, or emotional, for example anxiety, fear, discouragement or uncertainty of what's next.
Counselors and coaches have developed some strategies that students and their parents can use to prevent this from happening.
Celebrate their achievement. During the break between acceptance and attending college, and having to face challenges, some students may begin to believe that college isn't for them. This can lead to negative thinking and discouraged feelings. To avoid or combat this, students should be reminded of their achievement of being accepted to college. Small celebrations can help, whether it’s a get together with friends or family, a gift, recognition at church or something even more creative. (Pinterest can be helpful for ideas)! It does not have to be anything extremely pricey, small gestures can go a long way.
Contact a school counselor or college coach over the summer. It's good to stay connected with a counselor or coach. This helps keep both the student and the parent on top of deadlines and requirements for example placement tests and registration. Many times if deadlines are not met or requirements are not clear, students will be discouraged and may eventually fall away. If the high school counselor is not available, a college admissions advisor or counselor will be just as helpful.
Visit the college website. This will help students become familiar with their new environment. The college campus will be a brand new experience for most students. Getting to know where the school is, the activities offered, key personnel on campus will be very helpful for a smooth transition.
Be financially prepared. The one thing that can discourage a student is not having their tuition paid when they are ready to start classes. Ensure that financial aid, scholarships, grants applications have been taken care of before the first day of classes. This helps lessen the rush and the stress level for the student. Contacting the college can be very helpful here as well.
Be excited! Most of all, be excited about this new adventure! Start preparing for life as a college freshman or a college parent. At this time, It can also be helpful to find a mentor or a coach who can help motivate your student through college.
I hope these tips were helpful. Feel free to add tips of your own or to submit questions about the college journey. I will be more than willing to answer.
Until next blog,
Your Coach, Karlene.