Prepare for the Spring Semester before Break

The fall semester is almost behind you, and you and all of your fellow students are looking forward to a much-deserved winter break. However, before you pack your bags and head home for the holidays, there are a few steps that you should take to prepare yourself for next semester.

"You can make your semester a whole lot easier by doing a few things now so that you are not overwhelmed in the spring," said Greg Mascola, a junior

First and foremost, see your advisor before you head home. Talk with them about your progress toward your degree. Make sure that the classes you are registered for in the spring will help you graduate according to plan.

There's nothing worse than being registered for a class and finding out that the class did not meet the requirement that you anticipated. A simple advisement meeting can avoid this predicament.

"Last year, I almost took a class to meet a general education requirement, but my advisor told me that I had already fulfilled that requirement," Mascola said. 

Another thing to help prepare for your classes next semester would be to make sure that you are stocked up on school supplies. You don't want to show up the first day of classes without a pen or notebook.

If you restock on pens, pencils, notebooks and folders now, you can avoid having to buy them at the school book store in the spring. Too many students fall into the trap of overpaying for basic supplies while you also have to pay for those textbooks that empty your wallet as it is.

"Just go to an office supply store or a supermarket and get supplies there; it is way cheaper than the book store," Mascola said. 

Aside from academics, you will want to make sure that your living situation is squared away for the spring. You should have already filled out the housing intent form, but there are several other things to prepare for.

Talk with your roommates and come up with a list of supplies that you will need for next semester. Divide up who will bring what groceries back or if you will all wait to go shopping once you all return. You don't want to come back to find four gallons of milk in your refrigerator and no toilet paper.

The time in between semesters can also be used to try to upgrade your living situation. If you are unhappy with your roommates or simply want to look for an opening in a different apartment or dorm, there may be chance to do so over winter break.

Students often transfer in or out of Ramapo in between semesters, so that open room in the Village or Laurel you've been dreaming about could become a reality.

Taking these steps will make your life a lot easier come the beginning of the semester. After a long relaxing winter break, you can avoid the spring semester hitting you like a ton of bricks.