Tuesday, January 18, 2011

How to Choose the Right College?

Selecting the right college is a very important and tough decision.  The wrong decision could mean an early transfer, drop-out, or 4+ years of misery.  However, you can easily make the right decision by taking into consideration the following three factors that are typically forgotten:

1.)  Location.  Many parents and future college students equate this to just being in or out-of-state, or being close or far away from home.  Thinking only in these terms is a big mistake.  You have to also consider if your institution has easy access to transportation services (bus, train, taxi…etc.) with routes close to your hometown.  Now if you have your own car or have superparents who don’t mind transferring you back and forth, this may not be an issue.  If not, you could be only two hours away and still no way to get home for Thanksgiving break.

2.)  Emotional Environment.  Simply stated, this is how you felt when you were on the campus for the first time.  Some individuals from large cities want a change and like a small rural campus and vice-versa.  Others feel comfortable with environments that are similar to their home.  But, call it intuition, gut feeling, or even say you felt the stars aligned when you were there, no one can argue you following your instincts.  Therefore, try to visit all the institutions on your list, especially the ones at the top.

3.)  College Options.  Some forget that colleges must also pick them as well.  Therefore, apply to many institutions.  Three to five applications would be adequate.  This would include applying to your dream school, even if you don’t think you will get accepted; your best choice; and your alternative, which is just in case the others do not accept you.  In life, options are always the best choice.

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