Juniors going on this year’s College 4 Me trip, this is for you. When I was a junior, I went on College 4 Me, and it was the best experience so far in my high school career, so hopefully it is for you too. Whether or not you’re all packed and ready, or you may not, but here are a few things that are important to know before you go on your trip.
Things To Bring You Might Not Have Thought Of
A much as I knew that there would be some long stretch of driving throughout the trip, I wasn’t prepared for the boredom and discomfort that would ensue. Sure, you’re going to be on a charter bus, but when you’re sitting in the seats for hours on end, they start to get super uncomfortable. I would suggest bringing a pillow of some sort, like a neck pillow. Also, when you’ve been on the bus for hours, and you’re bored, you might get the munchies, so stow some individual bags of goldfish or fruit snacks in your backpack.
Something I’m glad I brought was a portable power cell for charging my cell phone. This was before low-power mode was introduced to the iPhone, so my portable charger was a lifesaver. A tip for keeping you power cell and cellphone charged with only one outlet to use is to plug your power cell in and then plug your cell phone into it while it charges. That way, they are both charged and ready to go for the next day.
Lastly, bring a refillable water bottle to keep with you. When you’re outside all day walking, you’ll get thirsty and water fountains are few and far between on college campuses.
About Packing and College Gear…
Overpacking is easy, but try to pack as light as possible in order to save room for college gear. There’s not enough room on the bus to accommodate for overflow paraphernalia, so if you plan on buying anything that could take up a lot of room, plan for that when you pack. Something else to think about when you’re touring the colleges is whether or not you could actually see yourself going there, because you don’t want to waste money on college apparel if it’s not actually a school you want to go to. I know I ended up with a $20 UC Merced sweatshirt that I now regret wasting twenty dollars on.
Make a Shower Schedule and Don’t Stay up all Night
With four people to a room, making a shower schedule helped my roommates and I stay sane, so I recommend that you do it too. If you’re a morning shower person, keep in mind that in the mornings there is a very limited amount of time to eat breakfast, get ready, and pack all of your stuff up again unless you get up early. As exciting as the weeklong sleepover may be, don’t stay up all night talking with your roommates because the next day you’re going to be so exhausted, and hotel coffee is not going to help much. You’re going to be active and walking, all day long and you’ll regret not getting enough sleep.
Remember you’ve earned the right to go on this trip, so have fun.
Earning a spot on the College 4 Me trip is a big deal. You went to the workshops, did the extra work, and have done well enough in school to be considered for the trip, so enjoy it. As much as it should be considered a learning experience, and you should try to figure out if the schools you’re going to be touring are a fit for you. Enjoy it, take selfies with the school mascots, collect newspapers from all the schools that you visit, and enjoy your spring break.