Ways to Make Starting College a Little Easier

If your child is starting their first year in college, chances are, you’re thinking about a lot of things. Where to buy dorm items, getting in touch with their roommate, preparing for a completely different kind of class schedule, learning the campus, and so on. It can be pretty overwhelming, and definitely stressful.

If you’re about to start preparing for embarking on the college application process, you’re also likely stressed about tons of things too, like where to consider applying to, getting not just their common app but other applications together, and figuring out how far you want them to be from home, just to name a few.

This period of time is a significant one, a major life transition that can be a shock to the system because of all the major decisions you’re expected to make and the way you’re essentially on your own, likely for the first time. Transition stress is difficult – you’re conflicted with the excitement of doing something so new with the anxiety of everything being so different, and during adolescence, when things are always changing, moving and starting a completely different life can crank up the stress levels to 1000.

The Jed Foundation, a nonprofit to help protect the emotional health in young people, particularly with suicide prevention, created a website called Set to Go to help make this transition more tolerable. The transition stress and changes adolescents experience when starting college can take a huge toll on their mental health.  

The site features a ton of articles and advice about all the mental health and wellness situations you may find yourself needing. There’s developing social and emotional skills (like how to navigate group projects) and understanding substance abuse, as well as understanding not just your own mental health, but how to help new friends if you see them going through a hard time. It even has a section about the college selection process and a section for families too.

Set to Go covers a ton of topics – if you are struggling or stressed about anything as you prepare for the upcoming big change, this site may be the place to help you learn how to manage that.


Is your child starting college soon? Are they applying soon? What things are you stressed or worried about as they prepare?

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