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5 ways you can enjoy your summer
while preparing yourself for life in third level education.

You’ve survived the Leaving Cert and are just a few short weeks away from starting the next chapter in your life. College!
Time to take a well-earned break, right?

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"5 ways you can enjoy your summer while preparing yourself for life in third level education."

You’ve survived the Leaving Cert and are just a few short weeks away from starting the next chapter in your life. College!

Time to take a well-earned break, right?

At Yooni, we believe every day is a learning day – it’s easy to enjoy your summer holidays whilst still preparing yourself to succeed at college life. So while you’re recharging those batteries, here are 5 simple ways to get the most out of the next few weeks.

1. Peace of Mind – Get Yourself Organised

It’s important that when you enjoy your summer, you do so guilt free. There’s no question you’ll feel a little anxious waiting for your results. Remember this is only human.

First, get organised on everything CAO. Know the key dates for what to do and when to be ready. This means:

• Preparing for the Change of Mind and knowing when it closes.

• Knowing when your results are out

• When CAO First, Second and Third Rounds are out.

Yooni has lots of key information on the CAO deadline here Having peace of mind that you know the when, where and why of CAO will definitely help with the nerves and let you enjoy yourself in the meantime.

Also remember to organise, keep safe and back up everything from the Leaving Cert – your notes, your copies, your textbooks. You will never know when you might need to check back over something in the future!

2. Research The College Experience

Speaking of CAO and college choices, you’ve put in the work – it’s a good time to get excited about the next chapter in your life - college life!

There’s nothing stopping you from spending quality time researching what college will be like, from college events, clubs and societies to your CAO course choices.

With no exam pressure, spend some quality time exploring all the exciting new subjects you will be studying, what modules you can pick from, sample projects and timetables.

Are you still unsure which college course will fit you best? Don’t know if you have your choices right? Do not panic! Remember, Yooni is the only service that can statistically determine what courses best suit you academically, based on your chosen predicted grades.

The CAO Change of Mind facility closes the 1st July at 17:15.

3. Budgeting

No one likes talking about money – costs, fees, bills…it can really take the joy out of what will surely be some of the best years of your life at college.

But sadly, money does play a part in college life. Now, we don’t want you to spend your summer in front of a calculator totting up expenses.

But it is a good idea to start planning - the earlier you can get a grip on things, the better for you and your wallet! So what simple things can you do before college starts?

  1. The first port of call is to always see if you qualify for a grant. There is no cost in applying, so you have nothing to lose in seeing if this is an option. Visit Susi for more information.

  2. Travelling long distances or commuting? Research what is the best, cheapest service available. Ask if there are student discounts for tickets. If so, apply as soon as you can for a student leap card.

  3. Back to School discounts apply for college students too. Everything from laptops, USB devices, to stationary and clothing – wait until shops bring out these sales before spending big on equipment. You might need a valid student ID from your college to avail of a discount – these are usually given out in the first week or so of college term so hold out until you get one.

  4. week or so of college term so hold out until you get one. 4. The weekly shop: if you plan to move out to live on campus or near college, try and work out an accurate budget for a weekly shop. Without this, you might find yourself spending all your €s with nothing much to show for it. If in doubt, ask your parents for advice.

  5. While you shouldn’t buy your books before accepting your college place and before your course booklist, it’s worth remembering you do not need to buy everything new for college. The college library should have all course books. For books and equipment, you might need to own, remember many 2nd and 3rdyear students sell their textbooks to first years in the first few weeks of term. Wait some time before checking out that basket online.
Parents: Yooni has special advice to help you too – Read 6 tips on how to finance your child’s college degree.

4. Extra-Curricular Activities

With your course picked, it’s equally important to think and plan what you want from your overall college experience. So much learning takes place outside the classroom, when students are enjoying themselves in clubs and societies and extra-curricular activities.

Don’t feel guilty spending the next few weeks enjoying yourself – think of it as time spent practising for all the new experiences you’ll get to enjoy.

Whether you love sport, learning a language, drama or watching films – there is a society in college for everyone to enjoy. But you’re at home. What can you do to prepare for this? Here are some ideas:

  • Podcasts: In today’s world, there is a podcast for literally anything. Pick a topic and you’re guaranteed there’s a podcast on there. The perfect taster for the new sport or hobby you want to take up.

  • Reading: Reading has huge benefits. Not only is it fun, but it helps build vital study skills too like concentration and memory. Like podcasts, there is an endless list of what you can read about to introduce you to new things.

  • Exercise: Whether you dream of glory on the college pitch, or want to improve your fitness, being active and doing gentle exercise in these few weeks will help massively with whatever club or society you're interested in. It boosts concentration, stamina and improves your mood

Remember, it’s important you enjoy your time at college. The above ideas are simple building blocks for much bigger experiences you’ll get in college. Research hobbies you think you’ll enjoy and take part in as much of the college experience as you can

5. Survival Skills at College 101

Along with budgeting, there are a few life-skills that will make the college experience that bit more manageable. Simple to learn and make a great difference. So with the next few weeks, it’s a good time to tick the boxes on some of these below:

  1. Cooking: If you haven’t already – learn to cook. We’re not expecting Gordon Ramsay here, but being able to cook nutritious filling meals will keep you and your mood in good spirits. Not only that but cooking can help save money from dining out or buying expensive ready-cooked meals every day.

  2. Time management: You’ve survived the Leaving Cert, and most likely are treating yourself to a couple of lie-ins and Netflix marathons. It’s a good idea to develop time management and a healthy routine – because once college starts it can be hard to get back into the swing of things. Simple things like going to bed and waking up at the same time every day will help build a healthy, sustainable routine.

  3. Driving: Although driving tests are on hold right now – you can still prepare for the lifetime skill of driving by practicing with your provisional license. If you’re not at that stage yet, set yourself a goal of studying for and getting your provisional licence!

Keep up-to-date with more tips on college life from Yooni. Follow us on Facebook, on Instagram, and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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