Good question. Many home schooled students (and their parents) worry about the transition to college. Sometimes it’s a question of academic readiness, but more often the concerns seem to revolve around the idea of a very unfamiliar experience and environment. It’s scary. On top of dorm life, new classes, and a nearly infinite number of possible ways to spend free (or not-so-free) time, it means immersion among peers at a level that most home schoolers have never experienced.
Now before my fellow introverts become so frightened that they opt to skip college altogether, let me point out that college (like most things in life) is often what you make it. If you stress about being able to make friends, chances are it’s going to be a stressful process. If you’re convinced that your professor’s sole life goal is to make you fail the class, you’re probably not open-minded enough to do anything but fail it. If college has done anything for me, it’s taught me to be flexible.
A few other thoughts (these may or may not apply to you, but they definitely would have helped me when I started college):
Recognize what (or who) you take for granted. Like a mom who will kick you out of bed if you sleep through your alarm. Life is different when the people you most trust aren’t sitting in the next room.
Know that people don’t hate you. It’s true. The large majority of people will not be offended if you say hi to them. I know – crazy. Okay, most people probably won’t struggle with this like I did, but if you’re anything like me, the sooner you take this to heart, the better.
Learn how to research NOW. I did plenty of writing throughout high school, but somehow managed to largely avoid research papers. Don’t do this. You will save valuable time (and sanity) by internalizing good research techniques before you have to write that 13-page exegetical paper.
Do you have any tips for the home school-to-college transition?