I have a class that requires me to write the same bunch of text at the start of every paper. I was wondering if there was a way to have a default page that starts with all the junk already typed, and in a certain font and spacing. Is there a way to do this? If so, what is it?
Do you mean "page", or "paper"?
If the former, look on the menu under "Insert" for the "Header" option. It differs greatly depending on what version of Office you have, so I won't describe in detail. The important thing is that this is the place you go to set that up.
If the latter, first make sure your computer is set to "Show file extensions for known file types", so that when looking at a Word document you see the .doc or .docx file extension as part of the file name. Create a new document in Word, set up your template the way you want, and save it as normal. Find the file in Windows Explorer, and change the "c" in .doc or .docx to a "t", so you have .dot or .dotx. Now, when you double click this file, it will open a new document using your template as a starting point.
How high can this boilerplate text be? It sounds kind of like you might want a header instead of a template.
In Word 2007, you can create a header by choosing Header under the Insert tab of the ribbon, and selecting a template or creating your own with Edit Header. Contents of headers automatically appear at the top of every page, and you can use pretty much all the usual formatting options in them.