Don't sweat! The best advice is simply not to worry about where to go. Every school in the world has so much to offer, something that should give peace to parents. I was accepted to three schools. Two large universities (Indiana University and Ball State University) and Franklin College. Choosing the small school has been extremely beneficial to me because I placed a high value on lower numbers in classrooms, as well as, high chances to participate in activities I enjoy. Sitting down with their child and putting together a list of values, priorities and interests, is something every parent should do. Figure out what their prospective college student enjoys is possibly the most important way of determining which school is right. Another important factor is distance from hometown. For me, it was important to be just far enough away that I could enjoy my life away from my hometown, but still close enough that I could drive home for valuable visits. Is this important to your child? Some students look to be further or closer. Talk about this topic. And lastly, never worry about money. Financial aid is available at every school. Get ready to enjoy college life!
While looking for the right college, parents and students should plan ahead. It's important to visit as many colleges as you can and be sure to talk to current students, professors and financial aid directors. Many colleges offer overnight visit programs which are ideal for students who really want to know what student life is like. What may be ideal for some students isn't always ideal for others. I would suggest that the students and their families visit a variety of schools, at least one large university, a middle-sized state school and a smaller college. If the student knows what they're interested in studying, they should try to find out as much information about what's offered at each school. To make the most out of a college experience, one must be willing to get involved. Since I have been at college, the most memorable experiences I've had have been with people I met through extra-curricular activities. Many colleges have numerous student organizations that anyone can get involved with. These organizations not only provide one with new friends and the chance to socialize, but it can also help prepare you for the real world.
As far as choosing the right college, parents need to support whatever decision their children make. The worse thing a parent can do is push their kid to go somewhere close to home simply because thats what they want or to go where they would prefer in general. Let the student decide, it works out better that way. As for the student chosing, be sure to go on actual visits to the colleges and I promise your decision will be easier. There is a feeling you get when you step on the right college campus. When you think about living there for the next 4 years you have no fear. You'll know the minute you walk onto the right campus for you, it simply feels like home. Lastly, don't hold back. Get involved in anything and everything. Don't be afriad to try new things and meet and hang out with all different types of people. These are the "best four years of your life"! Step outside of your comfort zone and take risks, they will pay off and it will make your experience so much more enjoyable. Above all remember to have fun :)
If I had the chance to go back in time and talk to myself when I was a high school senior, I would tell myself to not worry and to think positive about this experience. College is going to be the best experience that I have had because I am my own and I am able to learn more about myself and who I really am, not who everyone wants me to be. Before I left for college, I was scared about the experience and that I would not get along with my roommate. Well I was almost wrong about that. However, my college experience has been wonderful, even though I have had a few rough patches through out the years. I have changed roommates three times and dealt with problems that have made me question myself. If I had the chance to meet myself when I was in high school, I would not recognize myself. I have grown tremendously in the past two yars. I have turned into someone that I did not think that I would be. I have broken out of my shell and have learned to find the good in every situation, no matter the situation.
Mary, Senior year is hard because you are so ready to leave and you can start to see yourself pulling away from everything around you. Hang in there! College will be one of the best things that have ever happened to you. Before you go off, try to end every relationship on a good note. Your relationships with family and friends will change but you need to let them know they are still important. Get in the study mindset; college is hard work and in order to succeed make sure your priorities are straight. Know your beliefs and values so when you get to college you can figure out who you are and how you fit in. If your convictions are not strong, it will be easy for you to be swayed. Go in with a friendly and open attitude. Be ready to meet all sorts of people, you will find a group you click with but be open to everyone; the more friends the better. Let people know from the start who you are. Be real with people, you are starting fresh so you have nothing to lose. Get ready for the best time of your life.
The main advice I would give anyone when trying to find the right college for them is to never eleminate a choice no matter what the reason. I would always give every college that peeks some interest at least a phone call, letter, or visit to find out as much as possible about that school. Finding the perfect college for you, is not an easy task, and at times I tend to think it's actually impossible. However, I do feel that in some way or another a person grows into and becomes a part of the college they choose with time. That is what I love about Franklin College, I don't know if it was the right choice for me, one of my other college choices might have better, but I don't question that anymore I love where I'm at and I don't have any regrets. So Just look at them all and make a decision but more important never, nerv, let price of the education be an issue if you can help it. I say this becasue education doesn't have a price tag, its more that that its your life!
My advice would be to really decide if the student is going to college for the sake of learning or more for the social experience and degree. If it is for the first, I'd recommend a smaller school with more one on one time with the professors. If it's the second, a larger school is a good idea. Then choose a school based on the combination of if it is known for particular majors and getting its graduates good jobs, the location of the college, and the price range if it is one of the major concerns. Check out how good the school is about actually giving financial aid and if possible, take a personal tour from one of the students at the college. You can find out a lot by talking to someone who's actually gone through the experience. When you actually get to your college, participate in as many activities as you can while still doing well in academics. College can be an amazing experience if you take advantage of the opportunities that are given to you.
If I was to go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself to be more involved. I am only a sophomore now, but I still don't have as many friends yet, but maybe that's part of it, but I would tell myself to go out of my boundaries and talk to people. Not necessarily join a sorority or a club, but go up to people and start chatting. They may not be the type of people that I would get along with, but at least I tried. So far, I'm doing pretty well with transitioning from high school to college. I was a little scared at first, last year, but it wasn't what I expected. It was even better. I wasn't overwhelmed with homework and tests and a lot of stuff being thrown at me I couldn't handle. That is what I expected, but that was not the case. This year, being a sophomore, I am doing a lot more work and I am starting to understand what the real world is going to be like. It's preparing me for the future.
Parents and students need to work together to find a school that offers a quality education along with a strong support system, as going away to college takes a lot of adjusting. If a student-athlete is going to attend college, he/she should not choose the school soley on the athletic experience, as they may not end up participating in the sport for their entire 4 years. The student-athlete needs to choose an institution they will be happy at if athletics do not work out for them. The student should find a school that offers a variety of extra-curricular activities and clubs to help take their mind off the monatany of academics. With that said the student should also choose a school that offers assistance in the forms of tudors, mentors, study groups, and simply quiet places to study. The price of tuition should not be the main decision-maker for students and parents, as you cannot put a pricetag on your education and future.
I would tell myself to stay true, to follow my heart, and to know that at the end of the day it is my life and it is what I do and what I want that I must live with. I would tell myself to pursue all my dreams and goals and that it is important to make the most out of every day, so that I do not look back and wish I would have done more. I would tell myself to not be shocked and be active and take initiative. I would remind myself that it is only a small transition in the long journey of my life and that at any point I can control my outcome by my actions day in and day out. I would tell myself to never settle and to realize that there are millions of students across the globe making the same transition and that I am not alone. I would let myself know that I want to become a doctor, and that it is important to get some experience early and to make sure I do all that I can in my classes, to leave no doubt each day. Thank you!