When chosing a college or university for one's education a few ideas to think about include size, learning style, career, degree programs, and cost. First, importance must be placed on size and learning style because the two go hand-in-hand. I prefer smaller class sizes because I learn better from discussions, personal contact with the professors and students, and visual aids. Most colleges have visual aids, but when the school has a larger enrollement, generally class sizes are larger and participating in discussion and personal contact are more difficult. However, if an individual learns better from lectures in visual and audible learning styles then a larger university will suit her. Second, career and degree programs also factor into a decision. Smaller colleges usually offer less programs, while larger colleges offer more. For instance, my school specializes in Ministry careers, and may not be for someone who had not decided what to do with her life. Larger Universities contain more programs and areas of study, and allow more room for those who are undecided. Lastly, cost has much importance, but should not interfere with the previous options. The right education for an individual is priceless.
For parents: If you are worried about your child going to college, give them space, but be encouraging. Let them make their decisions and begin to grow up. If you are excited to get your child out of the house as soon as possible, still show your child you care. Be supportive and show you're truly excited about this transition in life. For all other parents, help your child get started, but give that needed space as well. For Students looking for the "right" college: If you know what you want to do, stick with it! Don't let girlfriends or boyfriends influence your choice... you'll probably break up eventually anyway (so why be at the same school with them?!). If you don't know what you want, either look into things that sound interesting or fun for you or just wait and go into college later. To all students: you may go to college thinking you know what you want to do and then change majors. It's alright! If you do, be confident in that choice. And the main thing is to HAVE FUN! You won't be in college forever!... so take advantage of it!
I am 42 years old. I got married right out of high school and had three children. My youngest child is autistic and so I have dealt a lot with schools. My children grew up and when the two oldest graduated from high school I tried to decide what I wanted to do. When I was 39 years old I decided to come to college and persue a degree in education. After all the involvement I had while my children were growing up I knew the school system needed good, Christian teachers to help guide the young students. Out of this college experience I have learned the skills needed to teach in a public and Christian school. Since I am older I have also been around normal college aged students which I feel has helped me to learn to better relate to students today. The temperament and values of children today are very different then I went to school so I feel that I am more in touch with children today and the needs that they now have. I have learned better approaches to reach these needs than what I had experienced when I was going through school.
I would say that the best advice initially would be to figure out exactly what it is that would make you happy to do for the rest of your life. After you have done this, start researching how you can go about accomplishing that goal. Look for a college with the best program for the money. Don't ever rule out the thought of going beyond four years. While in undergrad, have a good social life, but do your best to limit any alcohol use, avoid drunkeness and recreational drug use. Do things that are going to benefit your future. Don't be afraid to try something new. Seek out things that interest you to see value they can add to your life. While completing your program, look for internships that are directly related to what you want to do and take them. Find out if it is what you really want to do. Don't be afraid to change your mind, just don't make a habit of it. Take your undergrad to enjoy your life in it's prime. Set yourself up for a successful future and pursue the most education you can for your field of study.
To find the right college I would advise parents and students to visit a few colleges and take the tours around campus. Knowing the background of the college and what it offers your son or daughter is vital to there growth in character and stature. Pick out a school that you know they will work hard but yet still enjoy the college life and atmosphere. If you have a chance to go to a couple classes of your degree area that you want to pursue this would be the most beneficial to finding out if the teachers are enthusiatic and passionate. Also, after visiting the campus and the housing that your student might be staying in go check out the town and see what it has to offer. Does it have places to work, or eat at, or recreation to enjoy, and lastly are there places to serve at and get connected? There's that old saying you pay for what you get, and no matter what college you go to it will be expensive, but no amount of money is worth to much for your child's education.
Firstly, make sure to keep good grades. Good grades and test scores translate directly into money in college. The better you do now, the more money you have to pay for college. Also, take your classes seriously. People flunk out all the time for silly things like simply not going to class so that they can play games or sleep in. You are paying for every hour of class you register for, whether you are there or not. If you flunk out because of slacking off, you have wasted your time and money, and lots of it. The other big piece of advice I could offer is to be prepared to meet the best friends you will ever have. Many students, especially at Johnson Bible College (Recently renamed: Johnson University) meet their spouces there. I did and I don't regret it in the least bit. And my closest of friends also came from college, and I try my best to stay in touch with them. These are going to be some of the best years of your life, make sure that you don't waste them!
I think that finding the right college is up to the student attending. When the prospective student is looking I think that they should look into things at the school that would accomidate their interests and social life as well as their academic needs. I think that a student should really think about how a schools atmosphere makes them feel. If they want to feel apart of a community or blend in and not be noticed then that needs to be considered. It is all a matter of preference and that is what needs to be evaluated but the prospective student. I think that the parents should give opinions but ultimately let the student chose the right place other wise the student will end up unhappy in the long run. The parents need to consider that there are difference between when the parent attend and when the new student will arrive. Things change and so do their kids. Parents can't expect for their children to be the way they once where.
It meant so much to me during my childhood that my parents saw my interests and my strengths. They nurtured me and encouraged me in these areas because they thought it was more important for me to live my strengths than to just conquer my weaknesses. The point for most of us going to college is to study and learn in an area that will eventually be what we spend most of our life doing. I feel like college is just another step in my journey. It is important to find a school where the student can learn more about what they are already good at, so that someday they can do what he/she loves to do. So much of the time people go to college just to get a degree and end up just making a living. Your education should be a continuation and extention of who you are and what you can become. What a novel idea, getting paid to do what you LOVE to do. Thank you, Aaron Early
I exelled in high school. Everything I set my mind to I acheived and have brought myself great satisfaction and great personal reward for all my hard work. The one peice of advice I would have given myself that would have made things easier on me now would have been to tell myself to seriously apply to scholarships. I did not take applying to several scholarships seriously; in the sense that I did not apply to any at first. My Bright Future's Scholarship is now over with and it would have been nice had I applied to scholarships the last two years to have saved up that money to help pay for school now. It will be more of a struggle to pay for school now than it would have been if I could have given myself that advice, but even so I will continue to strive for my goals and continue to acheive my goals in life just as I have always done.
I have learned so much in my time here already. Through my college experience so far I have grown in my relationship with Christ and have really understood where God is calling me. I think that attending a Christian college has been a very smart move for me because I am not only getting a quality education but I am also getting the oppurtunity to learn more about my beliefs and the beliefs of others while I am getting the support of friends who share the same morals and ideals as I do. Attending this school has been really valuable to my faith as well as getting the schooling I need. It has really helped me to stay on track because I do not have as many temptations as I might at a public university. Johnson Bible College gives me the tools I need to reach my goals and to be able to reach out to help others.