You’re already setting yourself up for success by going back to school. Congrats and way to go on making that big decision of an investment of time, energy, and money.

What is the next step to help you work toward a successful higher education experience? Make a contact on campus. Don’t be a stranger. Stand out. Be unique.

There are hundreds (and sometimes thousands, depending on the institution) of new students on campus each academic semester and year. Don’t get lost in the masses. Don’t be another number on the attendance list, another name on the roster, and just another student paying tuition.

Making a contact on campus can help you to be more successful in college because you will feel more comfortable and at ease on campus. Your anxiety will be lessened and therefore you’ll be more likely to reach out and make more connections, or it might inspire you to go out of your comfort zone and attend club meetings that seem interesting to you.

You will have a supporter on campus. Most likely, you are not walking onto campus with a handful of buddies or your significant other. This is new territory for you and wouldn’t you rather have a supporter on campus prior to the day you step foot on campus?! We know we would!

You will be able to find the best fit institution for you. By creating a relationship with a counselor or admissions personnel you can ask the important questions and tell this contact who you are, what your story is, and what exactly you need in a higher educational institution. As a student veteran your past experiences and future needs aren’t the same as your average college student. You should inform your contact on campus of what you are looking for on campus and find out before you make any decisions what your top institution picks have to offer you.

You will set yourself up for future opportunities. We know from experience that having a close contact with a counselor, admissions personnel, or advisor can offer some very fortuitous pay-back in the long run. When someone of the administration or faculty has YOU on their mind, knows your name, or knows what you stand for they are more likely to offer your name when scholarships are offered, awards are given out, or one-in-a-lifetime opportunities arise.

Alright, so how do you go about doing this? You can start searching for the right college and reach out to admissions counselors to start the conversation. No need to go searching for email addresses or looking up names in a directory. Easy as pie. You’re tackling two big steps: Finding the institution that fits your personal needs and desires, as well as beginning the conversation and making that contact.