Winter break is slowly coming to an end — say it isn’t so! For college students, it is time to prepare for your best semester yet. I understand you’ve fallen into a routine of sleeping until noon, binge watching Netflix series, and eating loads of holiday treats (or maybe just me). It’s been a nice and needed vacation, but the importance of planning will help you ease into a new semester. I feel confident that it will help you end the school year with a bang! I’ve compiled a list of new-semester basics:

Map out your schedule:

The first day on campus may be hectic and overwhelming with students hurrying to their classes. Create a schedule so you can map out your classes, events, and activities to keep everything in perspective. Also, talk to your academic advisor if you’re having schedule conflicts, remember you have two weeks to drop or add a class. My planner is my best friend, and I use an app called Calendars by Readdle, which syncs with all of my Apple devices.

Purchase textbooks:

Yasss, I’m so happy to purchase all of these expensive textbooks! Said no one ever. However, textbooks are needed so get a head start and get them now. Once the semester starts, it may be difficult to obtain your books or could take longer for companies to ship them to you. Also, if you’re wondering if a textbook is required or if you’re allowed to use an older edition, email your professor beforehand. It could help you save some cash. I like how UNO sends me a message via Mavlink once my textbooks are available for my classes. Plus, I can price match to see if a company offers the book at a better rate than the bookstore.

Organize your dorm room:

For the student living on campus, I suggest doing a little housekeeping and organizing. It is a perfect time to hang up new decorations, lay down fresh bedding, and add new plants to liven up your space. Or, rearrange your room to create a new space. Lastly, tackle your last minute laundry and replenish your toiletries.

Set new goals:

New Year, new me, right? Whether you’re trying to make the Dean’s List, pass college algebra, or join a new club or intermural sports, goal setting will help you stay accountable. I set goals every month that are challenging yet attainable for my personal development. My past goals consisted of running my first half marathon, being accepted into UNO’s graduate program for public administration, and skydiving (because I am a low-key daredevil). I didn’t achieve my goals overnight, but I did succeed in them with maximum effort and encouragement from my friends and family.

Lastly, remember to reward yourself after an accomplishment, regardless if it is something small as reading your chapters on time or finishing an assignment before the deadline. Everyone deserves a treat as a form of motivation!