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Giving it the old college try

September 11, 1997
Web posted at: 9:29 p.m. EDT (0129 GMT)

From CNN Interactive Writer Dave Mandeville

Now that you've been through orientation, stood in line for books, and attended your freshman English class with 450 of your closest friends, it's time to take a break. It's time to ask yourself, "What do I do next?"

Don't panic, the Web can help.

How do I get where I want to go?


Try CollegeEdge.

This is a site dedicated to tell you, it claims, "everything you need to prepare for college and your future" including search tools, links, advice and guidance from an expert college panel. You'll also find FAQs explaining some of those new terms, and profiles of colleges.

Take a look at some of the advice articles. You'll find topics like women and body image, alcohol on campus, how to shop for a computer, and how to deal with your new roommate. While you're at it, check the message forums.

Unfortunately, most of the site's interactive features are stale. Very few of the pages have been updated over the summer. Take a look at the site anyway -- the advice is solid and the guidelines are good.

CollegeEdge is also a software package available from Snap Technologies. It's a college admission counseling guide that may be of interest to those starting the higher education adventure.

Do I have to read all these handouts?

No. Those trees are already dead.

Just make some nice paper airplanes out of the flyers. Then fire up you new university computer account and check your school's online resources for new students.

Most universities now maintain large databases of information. You can find numerous items for new students, covering subjects from financial aid to how to meet new people.

Am I going to get into them all? Do you know how many universities and colleges there are? Just trust me. Your school has this information online. If they don't, find a new school.

Who's going to wash my clothes?

You are. College 101 will tell you how.

The site tells you "What they won't tell you in the official college handbook." Find things like how to clean your room or how to study or whether your credit card may be your undoing. It's a tongue-in-cheek look at college life that will help you put some perspective on your freshman year and give you some good advice at the same time.

You may see the odd off-color word here, but don't fret. The site's Web host has already pushed the site maintainer into removing what they considered offensive. If you still find anything here offensive, then let me warn you -- college will be a real eye-opener for you.

What do the authorities say?

"Work hard."

How to Be a Student is a site maintained by Jerome R. Breitenbach, who ought to know. He's a tenured professor at California Polytechnic State University with three degrees of his own.

It's just one page -- text only. And it could be the answer to your college study woes. It's a simple outline for how to succeed in the grade machine. Give it a read and avoid the indignities of 2.0 GPR.

Red Mole

We are not alone

There are countries beyond the borders of the United States, despite what recent reports about the sad state of education may have led you to believe.

If you're looking for a little guidance in the U.K., try Red Mole, a site for students and recent grads. Get some advice on where to spend your money and how to find a job to get a little more.

If you're still in school, or you haven't gotten there yet, check the StudentMole section for links to information on universities or buying books. You can also look for a little help with those homework dilemmas.

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