Having trouble deciding which college to attend? We get it, it’s difficult, and there are SO many options! However, when it comes to college searching, it is important to remember that you will be attending there for the next two-four years, so make sure you like it! Below are some tips to help you when looking for colleges:
- Don’t eliminate any college from your top 5 list because of its price tag. Published prices can be misleading. By the time you factor in the “automatic” scholarships + academic scholarships, etc. no one ever pays the published price tag price.
- Write a list of questions that are important in determining the college you’ll choose. Bring that list with you to each college you visit. Ask all of the same questions and make note of the differences. At the end, you can create a list of pros and cons to each college you visited. In the end, it is all really confusing, so make sure to write it down as you get your answers.
- Find out who your admissions counselor is. Colleges have admission counselors for different territories. Your area/high school will have a designated person from each college. Contact the college and find out who the admission counselor is for the area. Get familiar with them. They will be your greatest resource through the scholarship searching process.
- Start early, but not too early. Your sophomore year is a good year to start scouting out the colleges and browsing around. Just see what interests you. Then, junior year is when you can start getting more serious about the search so you aren’t rushed into making a decision your last year of high school.
- Apply, apply, apply. For scholarships that is. Many students have the wrong impression and believe they can only apply for scholarships directly from the college they choose, and during their senior year of high school. Both are wrong! You can apply to local scholarships, national scholarships, etc. and, if you win, a college will honor that money and put it towards your tuition. You can start applying for scholarships anytime. However, some scholarships will have an age limit, but not all will.
It’s a good idea to have your college search near its end and narrowed down to 2-3 colleges by the time you’re a senior. This will give you time to really dive into those specific colleges and different scholarship opportunities within those colleges. Good luck!