You now what’s crazy? You graduate from high school, barely 18 and you’re expected to know exactly what you want to do with your life and where you want to go. Yeah, that makes sense. If you graduate from high school and are planning to attend college, there are so many decisions that you have to make. It isn’t easy, but luckily there are some resources out there for you to make you “life defining” decision.
1. Collegeboard.com: I used this site a lot when I was looking for colleges because it gives you a breakdown of each school from the ratio of boys to girls to the price. It’s fairly easy to navigate, and it allows you to see which college is best for you. This is especially useful if price is a big factor for you, because they are fairly accurate and you can compare the prices of each college that you are thinking about attending. Another perk is that this site gives the acceptance rate, which can save you some money from applying to schools that may be out of your league.
2. Guidance counselor: For me, my guidance counselor was very helpful in my search and helped me narrow down my choices. It’s best to find a counselor that is realistic in your search so that they don’t give you any high hopes for schools that aren’t a good fit. If you talk to your guidance counselor about your interests and everything that you’re looking for, they should have enough experience to help you find the right school. They can also connect you with other students that are in the same situation so that you can talk with them and get some extra advice.
3. Studentsreview.com: This site wasn’t so helpful for me, as much as it’s a sort of complaint center for people who weren’t happy in college at all. I made the mistake of visiting this site before I attended my school, and was scared off a little bit. Basically it’s like every other review site – people only leave reviews when they are bitter and rarely leave them when they are content. Most of the reviews on this site are about how certain schools have no parties etc. While some of the things said were a bit true, they hardly reflected the entirety of the school that I chose. I could tell that whoever wrote them must have been more unhappy with themselves and their own lives more than anything.
4. Word of Mouth: This is probably the best way to start your college search, or at least that’s my opinion. I didn’t even know about the college that I chose until I was talking with someone who went there. After hearing them talk about the college, I looked it up and ended up being really interested. If I had never talked to that person, I wouldn’t have even known that the college existed. Just because a college doesn’t have a huge name or isn’t well known, doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s not the right place for you. Try talking to older siblings or your friends older siblings that are currently in college to help narrow down your search.
The most important thing to remember when looking for a college is to stick to your gut and make the best decision for yourself. Don’t go to a school because all of your friends say it’s the best “party school” and don’t go to a school in Boston just because you think the city is cool. Once you visit the right college for you, you’ll just know it. Weigh all of your options, and don’t forget to do what’s best for you! Good Luck!