One of the most important things for a senior is to pick the college that is best for them as an individual. Look at what you want to achieve from your college education, your intended major and the colleges program for that major, the kinds of people you want to be surrounded by, the extra curricular programs and the location. Forget the pressures put on you as a senior in high school about where you should go and looking to your educational and emotional needs in a university. The financial aspect is a large determining factor. If you choose a university that is beyond your finances then your first semester will be spent stressing. Don't be self-conscious and be open to meeting new people. The first few weeks are spent meeting new people and forming new relationships and those relationships will be with you for the rest of your college career. Finding friends and forming relationships will help the transition to college and adult life go much more smoothly and enhance your overall experince in university. If you make your choices according to these things, then your first semester will be a wonderful introduction to university life.
I think the best way to go about finding the perfect college is to apply to several. I went on Princeton Review and researched the type of schools I thought would be best for me. I then applied to about eight schools using the common application. Upon acceptance, I went and visited the colleges. When I went to visit Loyola University, the city of New Orleans and the friendly student body caught my eye. The best advice I can give is that there is more than one perfect fit out there for every student. I know I could be happy at other universities. There were several other schools that also appealed to me, but Loyola University was a great match for my financial situation. Also, it was important to me that I attended a school where my learning differences would be recognized and respected. When a university understands that you learn differently, life's much less stressful. I would also recomend living on campus freshman year. Many events happens on campus that give students the opportunity to get involved more their freshman year. Overall, I am satisfied with the choice I made, and would choose Loyola University all over again.
Find a place that you feel comfortable at. Pay attention to how the people, the buildings, and the atmosphere make you feel. You should have a warm and content (even excited) feeling when you visit. Pick a school that prides itself on the sucess of its students. You can judge this by how much they emphasize extra-curricular activities. It is so important to be involved, find a passion, and having something wonderful to take you away from always working hard in the class room. College is a time to prepare yourself for a career, but it should also be very fun. College is such a special time for people and it is important to find a place where you feel really comfortable and happy. Things such as student organizations, work study programs, clubs, sports, and study abroad should be strongly accentuated for personal development. When pickng a school, it is important to pick one that strives for its students to have diverse opportunities and experiences. What a person learns in a classroom is important, but it is experience that builds character. Find a place where you can be yourself, find your own place in the world, and love it.
So you need to find the right college!? Well, here are a some things to think about. First, you want to research, and most definitely talk to alumni. Students just get too excited The fact of the matter is that only an alum will tell you the truth about the school. They've already paid for their education, and are living proof of how useful the knowledge they have attained is in their field of work. Truthfully, I talked to an alumni of my major once, and she said she felt slightly unprepared on her first day of teaching. Loyola is constantly bringing back alumni for that reason. They are always striving to improve their programs. Also, if you have hobbies outside of school, look into those sorts of things . For example, if you love to exercise, "Are there aerobics classes at the university?" "Is there even a gym?" Say I loved music, ( ;] ) I would do some research on guest performances, conductors, and even the venues in town. Is it far from home? Some students can't take the distance., and it's a very sensitive subject. Finally, you should ask yourself one question. Do you have what it takes? ;)
Finding the right college is tricky business; making the most of one's college experience is even trickier. Prospective students should consider their priorities and rank various factors from lowest to highest. E.G. location, cost, offered majors, etc. Start looking for schools that pride themselves on some of the most important points and ask current students about the rest. Never take an official's word for anything. If they work for the school, their top priority is attracting students. If a current student likes the school, they'll tell you why; if they regret the decision to enroll, they'll let you know. Once you've found the right school, sample everything it has to offer right away. Student groups may appear uninteresting, but they usually exist for a reason. If you don't visit them, you'll never know what you're missing out on. Take an active interest in your education both inside and outside the classroom. Nobody else can do this for you. If you want to learn, you can do it anywhere. No matter which university you attend, your education is free. The only thing you pay for is the diploma that goes with it.
I would tell them to choose the college that offers them what they need. Not only in a educational sense, but also in character. Some schools offer the best academics and resources available, however they lack in character building. The right college is one in which you can feel as though your home and pursuing a dream rather than fulfilling a requirement. I chose my college, because it did offer what i wanted to study, but it also offered opportunities to help me achieve my dreams and become a more well rounded adult. This college has already helped me discover more about myself and the world around me in a single year. College isn't just another stepping stone to get to your future. I strongly believe that these are the times that shape us the most. Therefore, the best advice i could ever give is to choose the college that offers your dreams. Do not hesitate on your decision based on finance, distance or any other obstacles. Choose the best experience. The college that helps you earn the degrees you need to land the career you dreamed of and one that also helps you become confident in you.
The advice I would give parents is support your child's passion. As a music major I am very grateful to have been blessed with a family that supports the direction I have planned to take at Loyola University New Orleans. I feel that if a person is truly passionate about something they will succeed in many ways, and some of these successes may not be the practical means of success. The support that a family is able to give their child is the purest and strongest foundation for allowing someone the opportunity to become an amazing person, as well as successful in whatever he/she chooses. The most important thing a parent can do for their child is believe in their child's abilities with all their heart and support them in their first choice university. My advice for students is to always strive to do your best in college. Don't get caught up in the hype of independece and abuse the amazing opportunies and education you are being allowed. Make time for your friends and family, even when times are hectic, because they will always lift your spirits when you're down because they love you.
My journey to Loyola was a very unexpected and spontaneous one. Loyola was not my first choice, nor was it my second, third, or even fourth. I started applying to schools, "sure" of what I wanted to study. However, as a prospective voice major, my parents forced me to think "rationally", urging me to persue a degree which could serve as a fall back option should it be difficult to find work; "a safety." So, instead of applying to colleges for a musical theatre degree, I applied as a music therapy degree. I stumbled upon Loyola by accident, and it happened to be just the right atmosphere for me. Beautiful campus... beautiful city... beautiful people. It turned out to be the best decision of my life. Granted, I changed my major to vocal performance during the first month of school... but that's a different story. My advice is to listen to your children and believe that they want something when they want it. Look through all options... and don't give up if you get rejected. I applied to 10 schools, and got into 2. However, one of those schools was Loyola... thank goodness for that.
As a result of attending Centralia Community College I have learned a lot about myself and decided upon a degree that suits me. I could have done this anywhere but I could not have the same experience anywhere else. I started college and life on my own at the beginning of 2010, because my parents moved away. This provided me with many challenges such as finding housing, food, job, etc... At Centralia I made many friends and connected with the faculty. The faculty provided me with many leadership opportunities which led me to my job on campus. My new found friends provided me with temporary shelter, advice, and so much more. I am now about to get my AA and go on to a four year college with the help of the Student Support Services who helped me plan my degree, classes, and select a university. All this has been possible thanks to financial aid which allowed me to go to Centralia College. I have developed skills in leadership,public relations,and experienced life on my own,working two jobs and being a full time student. Now I know what I want to be and where I want to go.
My best advice is to pick a college that suits your needs. Thus, this requires campus visits and tours. I cannot stress how important these are; they are your first chance to experience the college. I suggest that you sit down, and write out your ideal college. Include things such as size, location, major of study, etc., but don't forget to include the other important factors that weigh in on a college decision: the life factors. The college that you choose to attend will most likely be your home for the next four years, so if you are someone that hates the cold, don't choose a school that gets horrible cold weather. It is your job to find somewhere that you can be happy for the next four years, as well as succeed academically. If you do choose a large university, it is essential that you ensure that professors get to know you. This is critical when it comes to letters of recommendation. How can someone accurately portray you if they don't know you? My last bit of advice is to go away to college if you can. It opens up a whole new world of experiences.