Don't base your choices off what your peers are doing. Pick somewhere that you think you personally will actually enjoy, and if you know what you want to study then pick a place that has a good program in it. Social life and extracurriculars are important, but the purpose of college is to learn and earn a degree, so that should take priority.
As a homeschooled student, I was actually involved in a full time job when most of my peers were seniors. At the time, I thought I was doing the right thing by getting ahead of the game in the work-world. I realize now that academic pursuits would have likely been the better choice. In short, I'd say to myself "just start school."
The best advice which I can give for the parents and students is pick an university which fits your interests. Also, pick an univeristy which have the following points: the geographic location, the mission of the university which is offers to the students and their parents and the interest of your program have to offer as well.
The advice I would give myself is to make better efforts in highschool to achieve better grade. After having been in college for three years, all the work I did in high school is easy compared to what I have studied in college. And for that reason I should have no excuse not to excel in highschool and have a better GPA.
I would say that visiting is a great thing to help you determine which school is right for the student and to make the most of it, get involved! Its the best way to make your college experience the best it can be. With classes giving you work and being stressed out, a group of friends is the best way to make it through.
I have gotten that you should always go above and beyond. I have also learned that you should never let go of your dreams. Stick to them and strive to achieve them even if others are against you. It has been valuable to me because I aspire to own my own business and I will need that drive to be successful.
Learn to studyl As a senior in high school I was a great student but my work ethic was questionable, so If I could go back I would instill a work ethic in myself. Because if I want to be able to pay off my student loans then I am going to need a great job and that can only happen if I excel here.
I have realized that Seton Hall is not for me and that it is too expensive to not be in love with the school. I have met some interesting people and was exposed to different types of people. I also realized that the "big named" schools are not necessarily better than the other institutions.
Why pick second best when you know you can succeed and not be bored at an institute that might not agree with your family's plan? Follow your first instincts, they are usually correct. Don't make the mistake of getting overwhelmed and letting people tell you that you can't do it.
Read the syllabus, read the book, listen to the professor, take notes and do the work...parties are for AFTER the work is done. Spend more time with friends, going home is great but friends can help you more with your studies. Smile more and leave the boyfriend at home.