Trying to find the perfect college is so tricky. But my coarse of action was to pick a school I could picture myself staying at for the total 4 years. When trying to find a college that fits you, you need to look at everything from the finanical aid options to the clubs and organizations the college offers. Also if you want to study abroad you need to find a college that allows you to do so. You also need to decide what size of a college is best for you because the amount of people in each class is important. And even at a small college registration for classes can be brutal. Another imporant part of knowing if the college is right for you is if you are far enough away from family but not too far to where you cant go home on the weekends. The small distance is great because you become more independent, but when you get homesick home is just a train or bus ride away.
As far as picking of the right school, I would look for the type of environment that best suits the student for learning. Visiting the schools before making a final choice is highly suggested, especially if you have the opportunity to spend a day with a current student for a day to see what college life is like at that particular school. The college experience is all about learning and having fun. Getting the work done is the first priority and if you have time then joining a club or group would help broaden a student's perspective and get them in connect with different people. A work study job is always helpful for spending money or getting a job that is off campus. While it is not always possible to go to every campus activity, try to go to as many as you can especially those that hold some kind of interest for you or you think might be fun.
I would tell myself to calm down. I remember being so nervous about making friends and fitting in--the fear of feeling lonely consumed me. I came to Arcadia and made friends so easily. I would tell myself to put the cell phone away on the first day or two. Stop texting and calling my friends from high school, and get out there and make friends! Granted, I did end up making friends quite easily, but I could have done so a lot sooner and quicker if I had opened up a little quicker. I would also tell myself to be open to the idea of making new "best friends". I was so convinced that my high school friends were my best friends for life. I am still close to some, but I am very close to my college friends now. Basically, I would tell myself now that I need to be, overall, open to meeting new people, learning new things, and having new experiences.
If I were to give advise I would say go with the college that you get so excited you got accepted to you flip out in your kitchen or by your mailbox, because that is what I did. When I saw that I was accepted to Arcadia I jumped up and down and screamed and called every family member. I knew that Arcadia was the college I really wanted to go to because of the reaction I had. Just go with your gut feelings because they are usually right. And making the most of your experience to me means getting involved with activities that you would have been involved with at home. Make new friends and just be yourself. Its hard adjusting to college life so just give it a chance before throwing in the towel. People in college in the same year are probably feeling the same way so just make new friends and breathe because college is hard work and good fun.
Don't worry and don't panic. Your life may seem satisfactory, maybe even extraordinary, at times but that is no reason to not accept change into your life. A well lived life is dynamic, its about learning how to deal with the things life throws at you, to make the best of them and find the people and things that help you when things seem tough. Change may seem terrible, simply a wrench thrown into a train of thought and life that was working just fine, but just let it come. You waste time by dwelling too much on what things you think might end up badly in the future. Enjoy this last year at a school that feels like home, with people that you have grown up with and whom you love with everything but at the same time prepare yourself for what will come. Be excited, you think you have lived up to now, but your life has barely even started.
The best advice I can give is to take your time to find the best college for you. Visiting the school helps a lot because you can see if you would see yourself actually living there. I love my school and the experiences I have had here are more than I could have asked for. Living this close to a city is a great opportunity and I enjoy it. The parents need to allow their students to choose where they want to go not where their parents want them to go. The reason I say this is because if they are forced to go somewhere they don't want to, there is a chance the student will be unhappy and could possibly fail. The students should also try to take the selection process as seriously as possible. That is the best advice I would give parents and students about finding the right college and making the most of the college experiences.
College is everything you hoped it would be. Go and take every opportunity you are given. Arcadia will help you change the world. It will shape you into someone you didn't knwo you could be. All the fears you have about becoming a teacher will diminsih the first time you walk into class. The community that Arcadia has built will uplift you every day. You will be surrounded by people that believe in everything that you are and everything that you want. Doubting yourself is not possible at this school. The opportunities you are given to work with children and teachers in actual classrooms is like nothing you've ever done before. Travel the world, because "Life is a book and those who don't travel only read one page." Love your life and appreciate it and know that you will always have the Arcadia community to support you.
The advice I would give to parents and students would be to focus on the college that you want to attend and not on the money you might have to spend. In order to get the experience and the education that you long for you should go for it no matter how high the cost. If you have succeeded in your high school education there will always be academic scholarships. If you took part in sports there are those scholarships too. If you just dont have the money financial aid is available. The college that is right is the college that offers the class size you prefer, a great program in your major, and a campus you feel safe on and take pleasure in walking around it. Making the most out of the college experience is to be involved on campus in at least one group, make friends with classmates, and to focus on your studies!
I would tell myself to study more because you never know where that could have taken you. Also talk to some people who attended the college ask them questions, truly do the research on if you want to attend this school. Keep your head up and no distractions. Take atleast one ap class to really test yourself on your capablities. Do not slack and apply for scholarships every single day until waiting till the last minute to do so. Keep doing research and talk to your teachers and counselors and friends and parents. Give yourself encouraging words and then you woud be settled into making the college transition. Try the hardest you can to visit the campus if you can't do a virtual tour or talk to someone. Learn and keep learning because it will take you far in life. With these tips you will be successful in college.
Picking the right college is one of the most important decisions you will ever make, so choose carefully. Do your research and visit each school before you make your decision. Consider all pros and cons of each option. Once you get to school, take your education seriously. The hardest thing about college courses is that you get a small amount of work at a time, but it's easy to fall behind if you don't pace yourself and keep up with that work. You also need to remember to enjoy the college experience. Four years go by very quickly so don't spend all your time with your nose in your textbooks. Have fun every once in a while. Join clubs, get involved in sports, go to parties. The people you meet in college will be your friends for life so don't miss out on any opportunities to meet new people.