If you’re a senior in high school, you probably just had your very last day of class (or are about to). Next up: graduation!

Graduating high school is an enormous accomplishment and you should be very proud of yourself. As you prepare for this next chapter, which may include heading to college, we’d love to share with you some of our favorite pieces of advice for graduates so that you can make the most of this exciting transition period.

Advice for Graduates #1: Get Your Ducks in a Row

Let’s talk logistics. Have you cleaned out your locker? Made sure you have enough tickets for your family for your graduation ceremony? Returned any school property that was issued to you (think: calculators or Chromebooks)? Remember that you can get fined for unreturned items… even after you’re long gone.

Academically speaking, make sure to touch base with each of your teachers if you’re unclear at all where you stand when it comes to your grades. You don’t want any surprises when your final report card comes in the mail. This is especially important if you’re going to college because your new school will expect you to graduate with the same grades (or better) than you submitted when you applied.

This may be the last thing on your mind (summer is here after all!), but if you anticipate asking for a character reference or letter of recommendation from a teacher or mentor at your high school, now is actually a great time to do so. Ask your teacher if they’d be willing to write you a letter of recommendation at some point over the summer and that way you’ll have it on hand if a job, academic program, scholarship, etc. asks for one in the future.

Advice for Graduates #2: Part Ways With Grace

Are there are any teachers or administrators who were particularly special to you during the tenure of your high school career? Consider writing them a nice card or giving them a little gift to express your gratitude for their support over the last few years. Believe it or not, most teachers value their relationships with you greatly, and it means the world to them to hear that you had a positive experience in their classes.

Also, try to say proper goodbyes to your acquaintances. You’ll more than likely stay in touch with your good friends, but don’t underestimate how much you can miss someone that you didn’t realize was actually a huge part of your life—even if you weren’t that close. So make sure to say goodbye and best of luck to your teammates, classmates, or peers in mutual clubs or activities that you’ve shared time with.

To that point, get contact information for anyone you want to keep in touch with! In today’s social media driven world, it’s usually easy to keep in touch. But life moves and changes quickly, and it can be harder to track someone down than you think. Phone numbers and emails are the best way to ensure that you can get a hold of someone down the line, so don’t be afraid to ask—or to give your info to anyone you hope to stay in touch with.

Finally, was there anyone you weren’t on such good terms with? Consider making amends and parting ways on a high note. You certainly don’t have to do this, but if you’re comfortable, bury the hatchet if possible.

Advice for Graduates #3: Budget Your Time (But Also… Relax!)

The summer is relatively short and 10-12 weeks will actually fly by, so make sure to keep your eye on your calendar and budget your time wisely.

If you’re going away to college, there are probably a lot of people you’ll want to see before heading off, so prioritize plans with the friends and family you’ll miss the most.

That said, you’ve just essentially finished a four-year marathon (and may be onto the next one!) so make sure to get enough down time and fun in your summer too. If you’re working and/or taking summer school, remember that it’s as important to schedule relaxation as it is to schedule work!

Advice for Graduates #4: Try Something New This Summer

Whatever your future plans, you’re standing on an amazing threshold between life chapters. Now is a great time to try something out of your comfort zone because, let’s face it, a lot of what’s to come in adulthood will ultimately be out of your comfort zone.

Take a weekend trip somewhere new or pick up an instrument you’ve always wanted to try. Run a 5k or find an interesting recipe to prepare (you’ll be cooking a lot more on your own once you’re in college…) or download an app and start learning a new language for fun.

Trying something new will broaden your horizons and prepare you for the excitement of the unknown!

Advice for Graduates #5: Plan for the Next Chapter

What’s next? Chance are you’re heading to college, in which case, as you know, there’s plenty to be done before you head off! You’ll want to go shopping for dorm essentials, get your schedule locked down, order any necessary textbooks, make travel plans, and so on.

If you’re working this summer, it’s a great idea to save money—for college, travel, your own apartment, etc. If you’re heading out on your own in any capacity, now’s a great time to learn how to budget.

Or, are you entering the workforce? Taking a gap year? Volunteering overseas for a program like Habitat for Humanity? Whatever direction you’re heading in, it’s good to have a plan, which will help you take all of the necessary steps to ensure your greater success. For example, do you need a passport? Do you need a cleaned-up resume? Never underestimate the power of making a list, and get to it!

Oh, And Don’t Forget to Seek Out Scholarship Money!

If you’re heading to college or planning to attend in the near future, now is the perfect time to start searching for scholarship money to help you pay for school!

There are scholarships out there for everyone, and Scholly Search makes it super easy to find scholarships tailored just to you.

What’s better than free money?

Happy scholarship hunting and happy summer!

Checkout the other amazing features Scholly offers, including Scholly Editor, a personal proofreader, and Scholly Math, an AI-powered math solver that instantly interprets and solves any problem. Hello, college success!