College is all about a complete learning experience, both inside and outside of the classroom. It's important to choose a college that fits you on both levels, that can match your academic needs as well as your personal ones. You learn your class materials, but at the same time you learn how to learn. You learn to adapt to new situations, to make new friends, to be self-sufficient and to push yourself to be the best student and person you can be. You learn how to have fun, how to balance life with work and how the two gradually become one and the same. That's why it's so important to find a school that sees each person as an individual, that understands that the college experience is about learning on all levels. Once you've found a college that will provide the right academic setting, and give you the social opportunities you need to be happy along with the career advice to be successful in the future, you will have truly found your "dream" school. What matters most in choosing a college is not prestige or ratings, but picking the one that's right for YOU.
The advice I would give to students about finding the right college, is to find a place where you are happy. This is the most important aspect of the college experience because it affects everything else. If you are happy at you college than you will get the most out of the experience academically and socially. Also don't take courses outside your major or just for fun, it will definately broaden your horizons. Lastly have fun, although your main focus should be academics have fun and make good friends. This is the most exciting time of your life!!!
Make sure to look at the classes that are being provided and the size of the school, if you are someone that learn in a smaller environment then a big school will not help. Also look at the cost of tuition and apply for as much scholarship and grants as possible. Furthermore, living on campus can be a great experience, however, you have to know how to set your priorities. Since your parents will not be around every minute, you have to be able to manage your own life. After all you are getting older and the older you get the more responsibilities you will have , and college is the best way to learn how to balance your life.
You should visit as many colleges as possible, and ask students at the school how they feel about it, not just those pushing the school on you. Also consider schools you never had in mind, and give them a chance. The school i choose, i thought was too close to home, and not well known enough, turned out to be the best descision i have ever made.
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