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California State University-Dominguez Hills

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What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I will admit that in high school, I didn't take college as serious as I should have. I did not apply for scholarships or do any real research about how to adapt and be successful. While I have been fortunate enough to find success in my educational and career paths, taking advantage of the wonderful opportunity to experience college and furthering my education is something that I have regretted and done my best to make up for. Dear High School Senior Nychol...take full advantage of this opportunity. Something that so many are unfortunately unable to experience. Prepare for you exams (i.e. SAT/ACT) and have someone you trust review your college applications. Apply for scholarships. Join campus clubs and organizations. Live completely, but remember to always be safe and responsible. Establish long-lasting relationships with your colleagues and mentors (i.e. professors). And lastly, always remain humble and grateful that you have been blessed to be accepted into an educational organization that will assist you in obtaining long-term success pertaining to your career of choice. You already have the drive instilled in you. Now it is time to get serious and organized. Si se puede!

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When looking for the "right college" remember you are looking for a school, not the school looking for you. This means you have to know what you like about school, what helps you, and does the college you are intereted in accomadate those preferences and interests. For instance, if you prefer learning in a smaller classroom, Standford University may not be the best school for you. While this may be a prestigious University, the classroom sizes are typically lecture halls. For someone who cannot focus in large classroom settings, this may not be the "right college" for you. In regards to making the most of your college experience, there is a basic rule that every college stresses: from college you only get as much as you put in. To have the best college experience, you must give your best. That means get involved with campus activities, clubs, and even working on campus. All of these areas will help you get to know other students and even staff on campus, thus, beginning a great networking base. while these areas will help you socially, the best academic advice from one student to another is no matter the situation stay focused and determined.

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The advice that I would give myself as a high school senior is to prepare mentally to attend college with the understanding that it will involve use of time management and adjusting to the demands. College requirements and demands will need to fit in with my personal, family, and social life, but be prepared to make college studies priority in order to become the best learner that I can and to graduate in good standing. I would also advise myself to come to college with an open mind , open to meeting new people of diverse and cultural backgrounds,learn from others as I learn from the courses; be teachable. Be able to build from the entire learning experience. I should go to college to allow the learning experience to shape me into a productive, knowledgeable, well-balanced individual, and be able to apply what I learn to my life : personal, social, and professional. The last advice to myself would be to make college life enjoyable and know how to balance course loads in order to still enjoy the experience. Take the total college experience, whether good or bad, and use to reflect and motivate others to attend college.

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My advice to parents and/ students about finding the right college and making the most of the college experience are several things; 1. Start doing your research a soon as possible. 2. Narrow down your school choices to your top three Universities. 3. Apply for FAFSA as early as your senior year in high school, and continue to apply every year. 4. Visit your top three schools of your choice and make sure they offer your major. A big mistake many students make is attend a University that is close to home but does not offer thier major. They not only waist time but also money. 5. Meet with an advisor every year to set a guideline of your courses. 6. Visit the dorms before you move in. 7. Meet with your professors, allow them to get to know you. 8. Get involve in the clubs and organizations. 9. Take a leadership role in your campus, such as the president if an organization. 10. Network with as many peers as possible. 11. Form study groups. 12. Buy a catalog of your campus. 13. Attend summer school, that is key for someone like myself that wants to graduate in four years.

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I would tell myself is to apply for every scholarship that I qualified for because college is expensive. I ended up having to transfer from my first choice school to the college I attend now because my parents couldn?t afford the 37,000 yearly tuition cost. Secondly I would tell myself how important it is to know who you are as a person and know where you stand ethically and morally. People will try to change you as a person and it?s important to not be swayed negatively throughout your college matriculation. I would also remind myself to not settle for less in life and that applies to everything and even relationships. I decided to go to college all the way on the other side of the US and continue my relationship with someone who hadn?t been giving me what I needed even before I left for school. I ended up wasting my time on something I knew that wasn?t fulfilling while I could have been enjoying the whole college experience and meeting new people. Freshmen year of college is one of the most important times of your life, so lately take a lot of pictures.

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If I could go back I would tell my younger self to never give up no matter how hard the challenge is. The road ahead doesn't get easier and wider, it gets more difficult and narrow. Perserverance is the greatest tool you have while your in high school and dont let anyone take that away from you. Always remember that you can entertain a thought without accepting it. When you leave high school there is no one holding your hand, you must be independent if you wish to succeed in both college and life. You must stay focused and centered, college is a time for having fun but you must never forget why you are there. You aren't there for failure, you are there to become a man of value, a man of intellect, a man of humility. But you will only achieve what you want by staying as determined as you are now. By giving your all to every assignment, giving your all to any extracurricular activities you venture to. Your determination will set you apart from the rest of your generation. The potential that is contained inside of your mind is amazing, use it wisely please.

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I think that the best way to discover what you really want is by attending a community college first. Going to a community college first eased me into college life after high school. During my time in community college I discovered what I wanted to be while completing my general education that didn't cost me a fortune. I was also very active on campus which led me to enjoy campus life much more, I think joining a club or participating in activities on campus makes college a better experiece. When active on campus you get to meet new people and make memories. Going to a community college first also takes a lot of pressure off of students financially and in high school, you have time to really think about your choices and decisions you are about to make. Transfering out of a community college into a University is also less stressfull, from what I was told transfer students usually have a better chance at getting accepted to their school of choice. Overall the best advice I'd give is to take school seriously but take the time to enjoy it as well.

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The advice I would give parents and students when it comes to finding the right college is find a school especially those students who will be living at home find a school thats not too far home but where students can still come over for dinner, wash clothes, and come over for the holidays. Also, finding a school close to home can help on gas since the gas prices continues to rise. Students who decide to live on campus want to find a school that has affordable housing and nice rooms with enough space for roomates and their guest. Parents and students should also take a tour of the college to make sure that it is safe and has enough emergency phones around and that that there are facilities to help students who may need tutoring in certain subjects, need to acess the internet and print for free, and a study hall for students to study comfortably. Students should also want to find a college with school spirit with plenty of clubs, organizations, and fairs so they can enjoy their college experience and meet new people and make new friends.

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College is one of the most important steps in your life. It will be the best time to do the most networking and that networking can even help you land your dream job. Always remember that during your path in College, you will find people who will take you as their competition. But It is important for you to know that competition is not even worth your time. You must go out there with your head up and work hard to get the grades that you want. Do this not just for yourself, but to also make your family proud of you. It is also important for you to be a part of different clubs, organizations and events. In these social groups, you will find not just other students, but a big family who will guide and help you become comfortable in College. You will learn the importance of helping others, you will network with speakers from the workforce and you will also meet students from different campuses. Set goals for yourself, go out there with your head up high and give it your all. You will be thankful you did when you land your dream job.

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College is an investment into a student's future. Parents and students must take the time to research colleges based on what the college can do for the student. Tuition and proximity are factors that should have little weight on your education. A good college will suit your needs and make sure your personal education goal is achieved. Advisors and professors will have a quality education to pass on with advice from experiences at a worthy college. The right college is a college that benefits the student by honing skills the student already obtains and giving proper tools to gain necessary skills to excel . Making the most of the college experience can be done simply by getting involved with people on campus. Whether it is another student, a new professor or an advisor, they all have something to offer. A piece of knowledge or the next job opportunity could be sitting one seat away. Researching and networking is the key to success. My advice to to parents and students it to research colleges that offer more than a degree.

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