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Life Skills You Should Know Before Moving Away to College

Moving away to college is a major milestone in many peoples’ lives. It often marks the beginning of one’s independence and presents endless opportunities to experience the world in a new light. However, this milestone also comes with a significant amount of responsibility. Without the shelter and guidance of your parents immediately on hand, you will need to hone your skills so you can conquer adult life with confidence. In some instances, this may be harder than you think. As you stand on the precipice of college life, with so much to do, see, learn, and experience, it can be hard to know exactly which skills you should start with. To make the transition a bit easier, this guide explores three crucial life skills you should know before moving away to college.

Time management

One of the most important life skills you should know before moving away to college is time management. The structure of classes and schedules are often much different in college than they are in high school. Many colleges adopt a block structure for scheduling classes, meaning that you will only attend a class on certain days of the week. This structure allows for a bit more downtime between classes, and it can be tempting to use this time for a midday nap instead of an opportunity to study. Falling into this habit can cause you to fall behind on your coursework quite quickly. Classes move at a much faster pace in college, so you should manage your time accordingly to ensure you stay on top of the material as much as possible.

Cooking

College students have an uncanny ability to survive on a diet of Ramen noodles, Pop-Tarts, and soda. While this diet may be delicious to some, it’s certainly not nutritious. To avoid such unhealthy meals day after day, learn some basic cooking skills. Learning the basics, such as how to fry an egg, sauté veggies, or cook ground beef, will give you a solid foundation to build upon as you start experimenting with more involved recipes. Many dorms have small kitchenettes in common areas that are free for use by the residents. Some dorms even allow residents to rent pots, pans, and other cooking utensils for a short period. If you’d rather start very small, consider experimenting with different dishes that you can cook in your microwave.

Basic car maintenance

Students who travel a long distance to college or bring their cars to campus must know the basics of car maintenance. Your parents and your trusted family mechanic will not be immediately at hand to help you fix every little car problem that comes your way. Spend some time reading your owner’s manual to learn the ins and outs of your specific car. Practice removing your tires, and brush up on the proper procedures for changing a flat. Hopefully, you will never be in a scenario that you will need to put this knowledge to use, but in the event that you are, you’ll be ready.

Written by Logan Voss

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