Talk to current students, find out the truth of what is going on at the school. Counselors and tour guides like to sugar coat things.
I would tell them that they need to look for a college that is a good fit for them and that they are a good fit for. In other words look for the college that will get you what you want for your future career and that you feel good enough about to give your all to so that you will be successful in your education.
Take the time to visit a school and ask questions about the classes and department that the student wishes to attend. If he or she is undecided, then make sure the college allows students to be undecided in their first year in order for he or she to experience different classes to help them decide. In order to make the most out of your college experience, you should become active at the college and participate in everything that you want to do. Participation in key to meeting new people and having fun. Live on campus and experience the college life while meeting new friends and living amongst them.
My advice to parents and students looking for the right college is go with your gut. Some schools have all the ratings and reputation but you truly get out of your education what you put into it and you make your experience what you want it to be. So with reputation and ratings aside go with the one where you feel comfortable, where you feel the most welcome. Going to a place that has the best ratings out of all of the schools but a campus where the people are cold and isolated won't work for someone who thrives on people and frienliness. If solitude is your preference and you don't need that friendly interaction all of the time and you like cut throat competition because you need that then those schools are right for you. Every person is different and different aspects of a school are going to appeal to those people. Go where you are comfortable.
It is important for both the student and family to visit the college and see the surrounding area. If you like they city, go to the city. If you are laid-back and like the suburbs, go to a low key school, and know that there will most-likely only be house parties on the weekends for a social life. The student has to find his/her right fit with a college and the parent must understand why they like the college, and has to be willing to deal with the finances, especially the high cost of transportation today. Once a student is enrolled, my best advice is to get involved, meet people, and find your niche within the school. It is important to be involved and to feel important too; they you are making a difference. Then, before graduation, definitely get an internship. No matter how much theory one may learn in the classroom, it doesn't even compare to what you learn in the real-world setting, at a real job. Internships are very important, plus, recruiters love that you have gained some kind of experience when applying for your first job!
It's about finding what school can accommodate your needs. Going into my freshman year I was overweight packing on an extra 50lbs. I struggled but found a healthy balance between my school work, eating healthy, exercising and extra curricular. College is all about making the most of the opportunities you're given in my case a fresh start to a new me. When I look through pictures from high school I can barely recognize myself. Not only physically but in the way I carry myself. I've become a more self assured, organized person who welcomes the challenges that life throws at me. As a college student I know sacrificing an hour out of your day for exercise may seem impossible but alt tab out of Facebook and get your body moving. Get yourself on a schedule and stay away from that pizza tray in the cafeteria. You'll soon realize that these little decisions will make a big difference in the classroom and ultimately life after college. My college's resources provided me with the tools I needed to be successful. If you find that balance between school work and social life you can succeed at any college.
The best thing to do when looking for a college is to scout out all your options. Understand what the college atmosphere will be like. You must make sure that you are aware before you even start looking for colleges what you want your expierence to be. Weather in reguards to sports, size of classes, size of school, if greek life will be important. All these options must be weighed in order for a great college expierence. Less importantly, knowing what you would like to study does help. When in college the biggest thing anyone will ever tell you about having a good college expierence is time management. If you are able to manage your time well and are able to study dilegently when you need to. College is not a hard place. It is a great place to expand your horizons socially and academically. College is great!
I think the best advise I can offer is for parents and students to visit each and every school on their list. I know from my experience that once I arrived at Scranton I knew right away that this was the place for me. So much of the decision comes from the feelling you get from being on the campus. So when you visit make sure that you see everything you can and talk with anyone you see, and not just the campus staff but especially the students. Ask all sorts of questions because really no question is dumb when it comes to your future. And once you get to college, don't be shy. Get involved with an activity that interests you. I had the chance to do a retreat with some other incoming freshmen and it was amazing. I got to know other students quickly and it made the first day of classes easy. Lastly, I have to admit that I chose a college that was within a two hour drive home. College is an adjustment on many different levels but is nice to be close to the comforts you can only get at home.
Narrow down over 1,000,000 scholarships with personalized results.
Get matched to scholarships that are perfect for you!
Disclosure: EducationDynamics receive compensation for the featured schools on our websites (see “Sponsored Schools” or “Sponsored Listings” or “Sponsored Results”). So what does this mean for you? Compensation may impact where the Sponsored Schools appear on our websites, including whether they appear as a match through our education matching services tool, the order in which they appear in a listing, and/or their ranking. Our websites do not provide, nor are they intended to provide, a comprehensive list of all schools (a) in the United States (b) located in a specific geographic area or (c) that offer a particular program of study. By providing information or agreeing to be contacted by a Sponsored School, you are in no way obligated to apply to or enroll with the school.
The sources for school statistics and data is the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics and the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System.
This is an offer for educational opportunities that may lead to employment and not an offer for nor a guarantee of employment. Students should consult with a representative from the school they select to learn more about career opportunities in that field. Program outcomes vary according to each institution’s specific program curriculum. Financial aid may be available to those who qualify. The information on this site is for informational and research purposes only and is not an assurance of financial aid.