Skip to main content
17 answers
17
Asked 759 views

After I get into colleges, how do I pick the best one for myself?

I'm a senior who just applied to colleges and I am now waiting for acceptance letters, #college #college-selection #college-admissions

+25 Karma if successful
From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you

17

17 answers


0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Andrew’s Answer

Hi Alondra, this is a great question!

Here's what I would consider when evaluating your colleges:
- overall, how well valued is the school or department you're interested in (e.g. how well known is it, how reputable is it, the impression of where you went to for college can be important in your career)
- if possible, go visit the college and see if the atmosphere/environment is one you can picture yourself in or feel like you fit into (e.g. the size of the student population - do you prefer a small or big school, location, etc)
- cost - rather than going into a lot of debt, you can look at the tuition fees and housing and see if they have any scholarship opportunities to apply for
- if you are unsure of your major, I would see if the university has a wide variety of fields to study and the ability to change your major easily (you can contact the career offices to learn more as an incoming student)
- extracurriculars - a large part of college is making friends and meeting like-minded students and sharing your passions. I would look at the lists of clubs on campus, sports teams, arts programs, whatever interests you.

You could also reach out to alumni from the school to hear their opinions on it (you can search for them on LinkedIn or contact the college itself).

Good luck and hope you hear back with great news!
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Emily’s Answer

Hi,

Make sure you do your research and ask yourself.. what can these universities provide for me? Understand where you strive the best and what makes you achieve the goals that you want to hit. Do you want to go to a big school or a small populated school? Does your school have enough resources to support you in your major? Do they offer work- study, internships, libraries, places to study at, scholarships, or even internships?
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Karuna’s Answer

Great question! In my opinion, your college will benefit you best if it's in a location you want to live in, has opportunities on campus that will help you get engaged as a community, and has career opportunities relevant to the industry you want to work in afterward. I'd make sure to research these things before picking. For instance, if you want to live in a big city with much to do off campus, you may not be as happy living in a rural college town miles away from the closest city, or vice versa. If you have a particular club, sport, musical interest, etc. from high school you'd like to continue, or hobbies you want to pick up, you can see if there are existing organizations that allow you to get involved in the colleges that select you. And if you want to work in a specific industry after graduating, you can see where a lot of employees graduated from, or what city is close by to a hub of industry (like LA if you want to go into filmmaking for instance). I work in business, and so the most important thing for me was to be able to connect with a lot of other students and alumni who could help me advance in my career, so I went to a large state school with alumni all over the country and joined business organizations, and since I grew up in a city I lived a few light rail stops away from one.

Also very important are budget and school size. There's a big difference in the experience of going to a giant university and a small liberal arts college, so make sure to know which environment suits you best. Finally, the most important thing is budget for a lot of majors, unless you're looking for location or specific schools to network or put on your resume. It's often better to graduate from a less 'prestigious' college with no debt, than to pay 80k a year for a specific name. You can success anywhere based on the degree you have, the work you put in, and what you did outside of the classroom to get experience, so I'd suggest not trading a degree from a specific college, for years of student debt.

Hope this all helps!
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Sydney’s Answer

Great question! Congratulations on your college acceptances in advance! When finalizing your school of choice there is a lot to consider, some of which I didn’t think about when deciding the best school for me.
I would recommend going on a in person tour of your favorite schools as soon as possible because it is true when they say you can feel if a school is for you based on the environment, does it feel like home? Now I know that Covid is still here and an in person tour may not be an option, in that case check the colleges/universities websites for virtual tours that they may offer.
Also, check the location (is it in a rural town?), are necessities such as the grocery store nearby, is too far from home, the perfect distance or too close to home?, do they have your intended major and is there a good program for your major?, do they have clubs and organizations that you would be interested in joining?
Answers to the last two questions can typically be found on the college/university website.

Best of luck in your future endeavors!
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Madisyn’s Answer

Hi,

To figure out which college is best for you, you must assess many different factors. Some of these factors include: the amount of financial aid you receive, the majors and coursework at that college, the social aspect of that college (whether they have clubs and/or other activities you may like), distance from your home, and experiences of current students.

You must also decide how heavily these factors affect your decision. For example, the cost of college and social aspect were major factors in why I chose the college that I did. I do not regret my college decision at all.

The most important thing is to make sure that you pick the college that feels right to you. While you can consider the opinions of others, you are ultimately the one who will be enrolling.
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Gloria’s Answer

Hi Alondra,

Your challenge is balancing the variables you should consider when you are choosing a school.

Some of the variables should be:
- Is the degree taken everywhere? Some state schools have acceptance only within the state, instead of the nation.
- Is the cost worth the investment? Going into a large amount of debt is a difficult way to start your life or to put on your parents. Remember, there are thousands of universities and community colleges that are accredited. And in my experience, where you went to university is much less important than the fact that you earned a degree. Wherever you go, make sure that you apply for scholarships every year that you are in school. Reduce the possibility of debt which can be very stressful when you start working.
- What do you want your college experience to be? I was a person that felt very strongly about going to school away from home. I wanted to see the world and get out of my hometown. I will say that experience was a mixed bag. I did go away and I found that I grew up faster than the people around me. The downside was that my family and friends were very far away. I got very homesick. Looking back, I wish that I had gone to community college for my first year to get used to the college experience. College is VERY different from high school and I didn't know what I didn't know. Also going out of your home state can cost more. Lastly with college experience, consider what hobbies or extra curricular activities are important to you. You will need those things when school get stressful. Think about things like - do you want to live in an area where you don't need a car, do you want to live close to a river or ocean to do water activities, do you want to live somewhere where you can hike or join a dance company or support your favorite causes? These are the elements that connect you to your peers at college outside of the classes that you take together.

At the end of the day, the only right answer for you is the university that meets your desired characteristics. No university is going to meet all, but take the one that gets close. Good luck with your college experience.

Gloria
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Nicole’s Answer

Picking the right college can depend on major, financial aid, etc. Think about what the college can offer you in terms of your future. If you already have your major decided, look into each of the colleges and see how each of the programs differs. Here is some advice from LiveCareer:

Step 1: Determine what you might like to study or major in at college.

Step 2: Develop a list of criteria you want to use to evaluate and weed out colleges.

Step 3: Compile a list of possible colleges and universities.

Step 4: Gather all your resources and information about each school you're considering.

You can also visit the website for more information:
https://www.livecareer.com/resources/careers/planning/choosing-a-college
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Priya’s Answer

Hi Alondra,
I would look at how each school fits your needs. Does it have your program of interest? Classes that you want to take? A campus you feel comfortable with? Suit your traveling needs? As close of far away from loved ones? Does it excite you? Extracurriculars you like? Can you afford the expenses for the next 4-5 years?
Good luck :))!
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Priya’s Answer

Hi Alondra,
Check out the websites and campuses of each school. If the major(s) you want to explore are available, clubs/activities you are interested in, and you like and feel comfortable in the campus, I think those are great things to consider =). It really depends on what you feel is important to you! I know I ALMOST went to one school over another but when I went to the campus, I really did not like it! It had comparable programs to the school I ended up going to, and I ended up choosing my school based largely on the campus! It ended up being a great decision for me, and led me to great opportunities =). You can also consider if it is faith-based/more liberal, how big the student population is, the diversity, access to stores/places of worship, etc if you want to consider it more closely =).
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Dinah’s Answer

It has been so long since I applied to colleges that I wanted to attend for undergrad. Here is a couple of tips that worked for me to finally pick the right college for me:

1. Developing a short list of colleges that you see yourself attending.
2. Prioritize your colleges from the ones that check most of your boxes off to the ones that don't.
3. Don't put things aside for later, stay on top of it.
4. Revisit the college once or twice to make sure the college is a right fit for you.
5. Focus on what you want to do at the end of your four years at this college.
6. Get familiar with the departments that you are wanting to major and minor in.
7. See how well the colleges career center is in finding you a job after college.
8. Compare and contrast financial aid packages and making sure you are able to afford the college.
9. Moving on if a college doesn't fit.
10. Listen to your gut because usually your gut is never wrong.
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Robert’s Answer

I echo what others have written. It's important to make sure the school you ultimately select has the the right program of study to help you achieve your goals. You should also make sure that the campus environment and social aspects of the school match what you're looking for as you'll be spending a lot of time there. The campus will be your new home. If possible be sure to visit the campus during the school year to get a feel for whether you would be comfortable there as a student and if it is a good fit for you. Talk to alumni, current students, and staff to get a better feel for what campus life is like to help in your decision. Lists pros and cons for all of your prospective schools, including distance from home, academic programs, social life, and financial aspects to help you compare your choices. Good luck!
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Vanessa’s Answer

Hi Alondra,

To pick which college is best for you, you need to consider the tuition of the school, weather they offer your career or not. Also, if you want the university be close to were you live, also consider if commuting or living on campus is right for you.
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Zahid’s Answer

As I stated in my other response to your similar question, get more information.

Visit the colleges, sit in on the classes that interest you, talk to the students and staff there, check out organizations/clubs you'd want to join, check the mute distance and ease of it, check dorms for staying on campus, check the dining area, sports variable. At the end of the visit ask yourself two important questions: 1–Do I see myself being happy here? 2–Can I spend the next four years of my life here? More Importantly, see if they have the majors you would be interested in, and lastly check the amount financial aid and scholarship packages available to you and the cost of the college.

0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Steve’s Answer

If you haven't already done so when determining which colleges to apply to you will want to find out which school offers the curriculum you are looking for. If they all offer what you are looking for you may want to do some research on the schools online, looking for additional organizations or clubs that may offer additional resources and growth opportunities within your major. You also will want to take into consideration other factors outside of the actual learning environment like where is the college located, will you have to live on campus, how far from home will you be. Also wouldn't be a bad idea to look into credit transfer potential if you try and decide that institution is not the one for you.
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Jordan’s Answer

Committing to college is a big decision, but it's important to take a step back and remember that all colleges have their own positives and negatives and that it's entirely possible you might be happy at more than one school. The number one thing to consider is which schools have programs that will help you achieve your professional and life goals or help you discover what those might be for you. Then you need to consider financial aid and scholarship packages available to help get a better picture of what going to that school would mean. If you're able to take virtual tours or speak to current student ambassadors, that's a great way to get better insight as to the day to day life at that school. Make sure you do your research and go with your gut!
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Lauren’s Answer

Hi Alondra,

Great question! After getting into colleges, I think it's important to do some research into the colleges you've been accepted into so that you can determine which one matches your future career aspirations, etc. While additionally considering which one you can see yourself at for the next four years, a place that has the atmosphere you'd want to surround yourself with. If possible, I would also recommend touring the colleges whether that be in person or virtually, and reaching out to alumni via facebook groups, linkedin, etc. to gain some perspective from them on their experiences there.
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Amanda’s Answer

Hi Alondra -

First off, I want to wish you the best of luck during this process!

Here are some points that can guide you. When answering the below, imagine your college experience over the next 4 years

1. Attend college office hours or sessions. Many colleges host information sessions to newly accepted students. Take advantage of these sessions to hear more about what the college offers, and what students say about their school.
2. Consider location of the college. Are some that you applied to further away from where you are now? Are you interested in exploring a new city or area?
3. Type of college campus. All colleges have a unique campus feel. Some are directly in cities, while others are in more urban locations. How important is the type of campus to you?
4. Size of the college. Do you want to go to a very large college, with thousands to tens of thousands of students, a medium sized college, or a small college?
5. Extracurriculars offered by the college. Research a bit about what types of extracurricular activities that the college offers that you can participate in, such as clubs or sports related to your interests.
0