Home Collegiate Guides How to survive the beginning of the semester

How to survive the beginning of the semester


By Jacquelyn Zeman – Chief Web Editor

Whether this is your first semester, or you have been attending college for several years, the first day of classes on any college campus can be hectic.

Read on for tips on how to get off to a smooth start of the winter semester at Grand Rapids Community College.


Parking at GRCC on the first day of the fall semester. Photo by Clayton Cummins.

With no on-campus living, most students at GRCC get to school by driving. Since there is so much to get done the first week of school, many students arrive early to campus in order to find their classes and run errands.

Due to the rush to get to campus, many students spend too much time waiting to get in or out of one of GRCC’s parking ramps.

Watch this video to see tips on how to park at GRCC and navigate all the available lots.

If you live in the Grand Rapids area, you might want to check out bus routes for the Rapid or the Silver Line. Both have stops near campus, and are a great alternative to driving to campus. Check out our story here on how the bus routes work around GRCC, and here for the Rapid and Silver Line schedules.

Student ID – 

Photo by Sarah Davis
Photo by Sarah Davis

From parking on campus to student discounts, GRCC’s student ID, the RaiderCard, is a very powerful and critical tool for students to have with them on campus. Read here for some tips on where to use your card on campus, and which local places offer discounts with a RaiderCard.

Another way to use your RaiderCard is to get into the health club and pool at the Ford Fieldhouse. The schedule of events going on at the fieldhouse is listed here.

Textbooks – 

College itself is quite pricy, but on top of class costs most students must pay for multiple textbooks each semester. Check out our story which includes tips on how to save money on textbooks used at GRCC.

Entertainment – 

The Bitter End Coffeehouse. Photo by Erica Horoky

GRCC has many clubs and groups that put on entertainment for students throughout the semester. Welcome Week will be Jan. 19 through 22, and will feature many activities throughout the week for students to get involved in.

Sick of studying at home or on campus?  Check out this list of coffee houses located near GRCC that can serve as a great backdrop for anything from studying to catching up with friends.

Advice – 

Sometimes it can be hard, especially if you are new to college, to keep all your classes organized. Read on for tips on how to stay organized throughout the semester, and how to make the most of your experience at GRCC.


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