Admissions Expertise We don't have time or money to visit some schools I’m really interested in. What can I do? With the gift of the World Wide Web you can learn so much about an institution before applying that it makes sense to "visit" as many as possible through the internet. Narrow your choices down based upon the research you do and plan to visit those to which you are admitted. Visits then are very important-would you buy a car without driving it? Likes Like This Answer Already Liked This Answer Thank you, this item will be reviewed. If I haven’t found the right extracurriculars, can I still appear to be a dedicated student? Finding your “passion” does not happen overnight. If it has not hit you yet it is a good idea to spend quality time with an activity you enjoy rather than spread yourself all over the place and never really have a sense of why you are doing what you are doing. Think about going along with a friend on one of their activities to see what attracts them to the activity, or, break out of your current group of friends and try something totally new. Stretch yourself and sign up for the next volunteer service program in your school…you’ll find a great new activity and help others at the same time. Passions are not made-they are discovered…and they grow. 340 Likes Like This Answer Already Liked This Answer Thank you, this item will be reviewed. Tuition aside, what benefits and drawbacks exist by going to school in-state vs. out-of-state? College is seen as preparation for a career, but it is also a transition from adolescence to young adulthood. The greatest benefit of going to school far from home is the growth in confidence from being away from home while in the supportive community of a college or university. Being pushed out of one’s comfort zone, learning how to negotiate through a new location and doing so together with new classmates can build confidence and independence. You won’t earn credits in self-sufficiency but you will come home a more mature, self confident young adult. An example A young woman who suffered separation anxiety was concerned about leaving home but saw the benefit of pushing her limits. Choosing a school four hours from home was a challenge and was not without rocky moments the first year. By junior year, she had the confidence to spend a semester in Vienna Austria, traveling around Europe independently nearly every weekend. Upon graduation she moved from her rural home town to a large eastern city with no problems at all. She attributes her success to that first difficult choice to go to selecting an out of state college. 805 Likes Like This Answer Already Liked This Answer Thank you, this item will be reviewed. How can I work with schools to boost my financial aid? Are there other sources of student aid? While you cannot be certain if you will receive additional aid, schools cannot respond to situations they do not know about. Because your family circumstances have changed dramatically your resources will be different. Most aid offices will ask you to put your request in writing and provide as much specific information as possible. Do not wait to contact the aid offices “hoping” things will work out. Hope is not a plan and most institutional aid budgets are limited. The sooner you make schools aware of your situation the more likely it is that you will receive some assistance. 988 Likes Like This Answer Already Liked This Answer Thank you, this item will be reviewed. To find scholarships, where should I look, what's needed of me, and which ones seem craziest? Applying for local or “outside” scholarships (those independent of the college you may attend) can be very time-consuming and often yields little in the way of results. Be very particular about the scholarships you select to submit an application. Determine how many applicants generally apply and how many will be selected. Will the scholarship be for your first year only or is it renewable. Do your circumstances seem to line up with the requirements for the award? Consider all these factors as a substantial outside award may limit your institutional award, which often requires only the submission of the FAFSA. 658 Likes Like This Answer Already Liked This Answer Thank you, this item will be reviewed. How can parents help students with the college search and application process? Parents can be the most helpful by being the unseen force behind the student-perhaps serving as the nudge or the gentle reminder, but never the "doer." Kids are busy, they need a little help in this very complicated, emotional process but it should be their search, their application, their college. Encourage exploration of lots of options, drive through college and university campuses whenever the opportunity presents itself and talk about future plans but only to feed your child's imagination and desire. Likes Like This Answer Already Liked This Answer Thank you, this item will be reviewed. How many schools should I apply to? Applying to colleges is time consuming and can be costly. Do your research beforehand and apply only to those schools that seem reasonable in terms of your chances for admission and are good matches for you in terms of academics, campus life and location. Of course the big question is final cost...which can be difficult to determine in the beginning, but be sure to use the net price calculators to get a sense of what you may qualify for in terms of aid. I have seen students apply to as many as 20 schools and others a few as one. The correct answer is certainly somewhere in between. Eight to ten seem reasonable. Remember-you can only attend one Likes Like This Answer Already Liked This Answer Thank you, this item will be reviewed.