feature image of Rabbit Food article
feature image of Rabbit Food article

Financial Aid | Budgeting

College and Kids: 4 Tips for Students and Parents

When it comes to prepping for college, it’s important to get both parent and student involved in the planning process. And with the right amount of preparedness and foresight, it can be a smooth and successful transition. 

Try some of these tips on for size when getting ready to head off (or send someone off) to college.

Plan Your Budget

Having a well-planned budget can help. College involves some new entries into your regular budget, whether the student in question is pitching in with a part-time job or otherwise. Make a list ahead of time to know where the money will come from for groceries, books, incidentals and emergency funds, to name a few.

Manage Your Time

Finding an adequate balance between class time, studying, extracurricular activities, Greek life and a job is important. Once midterms or finals week roll around, efficiently organizing your time can boost your energy and even find you some prized moments of free time.

It’s a good idea to scope out any campus resources for staying on top of schedules and studying and the like. SDSU, for example, offers its student body specified tutoring opportunities for a variety of its subject areas. (And after the occasional studying all-nighter, you have your campus health and wellness center to keep you in tip-top shape both physically and mentally.)


College is the best four years of your life, so the often-repeated saying goes, and make sure that level of fun is injected into your day-to-day life on and off campus. Find the joy of academic successes, a completed semester under your belt or a top-notch concert or athletic event in the books to amp up your relaxation and happiness quotient.

Both students and parents can benefit from taking a deep breath and being patient. With the right level of understanding and encouragement from parents the high-school-to-college transition can be a winning one. Take any adjustments one day at a time for the most positive results.

Get Involved

Make the most of your time at college by getting involved on campus. Look into Greek life, athletic clubs or groups focused on professional development. You can find a lot of great student organizations that will pay off when it comes time to apply for internships and jobs. Getting involved also serves as an excellent way to make connections, friends and get the most out of your time at college.

Your very own Brookings-based university right here in-state has just such opportunities for getting involved while attending college. SDSU boasts more than 200 student organizations, including the Pride of the Dakotas marching band, which doesn’t require students to be music majors to join. Student government associations and the University Program Council are also great options to consider for students looking to add some experience, connections and career skills to their repertoires. 

Ready to explore a university with a lot to offer?

Schedule a visit with SDSU to see the campus, learn about the admission process and find out what makes your own state campus the right choice.

More from Rabbit Food

The Future College Student's Guide to Getting Prepped for the Fall (Free E-Book)