The Decision to Attend a State School

June 4, 2014 in Academics, Admissions, Alive Campus, Colleges

When you embark on the journey that is planning for college, everyone is chalk-full of advice for you. They tell you the best school for your particular interests, they tell you which school has the best parties, which school has the hottest girls, and where you can find the least obnoxious fraternities. My problem was always figuring out what advice just conversational, and what was actually practical. We all desire two specific outcomes from our college experience: to have a great time, and leave with a experience that can get us a job. When I began applying to schools, I looked for all the regular things an almost-high school graduate would look for in a school: offered majors, location, size, guy/girl ratio, campus food, etc. The one key piece I did not search for was price. I knew school was expensive regardless of which one you chose, so I figured it didn’t matter. Take out a loan, get a few grants, pay it back after you graduate. So simple. So wrong.

Average College Debt per Student

One night when I had pretty much made up my mind about attending a $40,000/year school, my father sat me down and wrote out exactly how much debt I would be in after just 4 years at this particular college. He included the tuition, the housing, and the estimated spending money even if I was employed while at school. The number was staggering, even with the estimated amount of financial aid I was to receive. Not to mention, in today’s growing population of college graduates, if one wishes to stand out among other applicants for well-paying jobs, further schooling beyond your typical 4 years is almost required in a vast number of job fields. Why spend your life in debt for a degree that will ultimately be overshadowed by your graduate school degree?

Boyden Hall at Bridgewater State University

Now that I knew exactly what I would be facing after my 4 years of undergraduate studies, it was a clear and simple choice; follow the money. The school that gave you the most money and would leave you with the least amount of money stress after you graduate should be at least in your top 3 final choices. I chose to attend Bridgewater State University because of the financial aid packages they granted me, and attend for 1/4 of the price I would pay at my original school choice. The two schools have the same majors, and student body size.  To get accepted to a state school like BSU, you must be in the B-range GPA and have a few credible extracurricular activities on your application. With a 60% acceptance rate, as long as you have a healthy application, your chances for attending a great school like this one, (for a fraction of a private college with the same education) is very high. When I return home for breaks, stories I hear from my friends about their private schools are very similar to mine. There are still parties, funny and/or horrifying roommate sagas, awkward run-ins with last weekend’s hookup, and the unavoidable sleeping through an exam on accident. College is college, you’ll get the experience wherever you attend. The only advice I can give is to get that experience at a place you love, and place your bank account won’t hate you for attending later in life.

To Prospects of Life and an Alive Campus Farewell

February 5, 2014 in Academics, Admissions, Alive Campus, Campus Life, Career, Colleges, Events, Health, Infographics, Love, Reviews, Sports, Style, Tech, Travel

Hello Camper,

Aim and shoot for beyond the stars…

Alive Campus provides an awesome experience for individuals receiving and sharing information about their colleges. It provides an avenue for incoming freshmen, transfers and overall prospects to view an institution in light of the person-student. It is better than a commercial about an institution that attempts to sell the environment to the student. Still- the able, productive and willing student will learn to use an institution as a useful platform: Students excelling in academics and sports will be able to promote their selves through the institution or their merits for their personal reasons. College may be an expensive or inexpensive experience but SallieMae is always willing to assist the educational process toward their profitable return.

Every collegiate institution will vary by academia, cultures, privatization, religions, regulations and traditions. My attendance from Lock Haven University to Centenary College has been a fulfilling and tremendous rollercoaster of experience. El Torro and Kingda Ka in a blizzard cannot compare with my college tumbling experience. After completing then paying for one class and test I will have the opportunity to graduate from Centenary College in May, elated.

It has been a great experience writing for Alive Campus. It will no longer be my place to discuss Centenary College’s environment as I improve away from it. I do have bits of advice for individuals seeking to attend an institution or transfer from an institution. The future is changing dramatically with the variety of institutions available; chiropractic, culinary, dog training, masseuse, music and etc. type of schools exist for individuals seeking a particular career path of growth.

Do not rush any decision about the future. If you feel an inclination toward a different direction for your life then find the avenues prospering in the direction of your inclination. If you are unsure about attending a large university then attend a community college to save money and receive half (or more) of the credits at a four year college. You will have enough time to think and prepare financially for the future ahead of you without risking valuable time especially since community colleges are very affordable avenues. The one class I am taking at Centenary is more than my co-worker’s semester tuition at a community college.

Don’t let others make decisions about your life either: If they’re not offering financial backing and a place in their home with their advice about your future then take their advice like an open wound with a grain of salt; take careful thought thinking about the next steps in your future. Don’t rush your life. Advice is another option to think about especially when various walks of life will have advice readily available for a variety of purposes. Be patient thinking about decisions, and even more patient making those decisions, to enhance your life in the long run.

I hope the future progresses well for every individual!

It will progress well if you take your time for its true value.

Time is not money: It is your life.

Onward and Upward,

Kevin Dufresne

Thank you Radek Janowski and Alive Campers for being amazing and useful!