First things first I would stay away from those "college ranking publications" for guidance. Most schools pay for their names to be in these publications and the rankings do not reflect an accurate rating. I would also do your best to stay in state. Most universities will allow you to transfer credits rather easily if you stay in state. Also, I would start looking for colleges in your junior year. I would highly encourage you if possible to meet with current students at colleges you are considering. This will give you true insight into the experience.
I have a friend who works on/off Broadway in New York. She has told me the best schools are usually around the New York/LA region. This is due to the close proximity to the theater district and usually provides mentorship, connections, and internships. Not saying you can't go to a good college away from these areas but it may give you an advantage to stay close to where all the theatrical productions are located.
If I could encourage you to read one business book it would be the book below. Good luck on the journey!
Daniel recommends the following next steps:
I work in financial aid, so take this with a grain of salt. I'm not sure of the specific art-form you are interested in. I would suggest that you think really hard about what your end-goal is.
I can only speak to the theatre-aspect. I was the lead-actor, as a junior, in my state's "All-State Play". I apparently won the role over 134 other people auditioning. Yippee. Partially because I unknowingly wore all black to the audition. I have a daughter that participates in after-school band, choir, and piano. I had a lot of pressure growing up…and I have tried my best to just let her explore…put feelers out, etc. She can quit, whenever.
In case it helps at all…and again…grain of salt…your choice will depend on whether it’s theatre, dance, music, instrument…
As someone who works at a school with a performing arts department (anonymous) I know that auditions are the norm…across all the boards.
The thing I wanted to pass on…and please know this is reflexive of me…it has NOTHING to do with you…I was raised with pats on the backs from performances, etc. And I pray your family doesn’t hate me for saying this…but what held me back was the fact that I wasn’t confident enough to have the desire to go and look for another job every three months. Having said that, I have two wonderful friends that I went to high school with. One was my college roommate, freshman year. He graduated and went to LA. He currently lives out there and lives a comfortable life. The other, ended up in Victoria, BC. She has a couple bands, sells CD’s, etc…teaches kids. Please take a moment to think about your end-goal. I chickened out and I didn’t throw caution to the wind. But again…if you play Bassoon (big demand btw) changes things.
Just promise that if you start college/a program you will finish...hope to learn what creative field is your forte…you got his…
1) What academic environments do you prefer? (urban, suburb, etc...)
2) interdisciplinary or intra-disciplinary (the school designed for specific fields or school that allows students to explore other areas within the school)
3) Geographic location/region (do you prefer a school that is far or close to you)
4) Are there enough opportunities around schools you desire to attend? (some jobs are limited in specific regions)
5) Can you picture yourself at the school you researched? (imagine yourself being there as you are likely to spend roughly four years)
This list can go endlessly, but I recommend contemplating and answering these questions before looking at the ranking because it is not about where but why.
I hope my answer helped you.
check this out? you want to look at the different colleges that offer what you want then you do research on their programs look at their tuition decide whether you want to go out of state a lot of the time going to the top #1 school isn't always the answer but feeling comfortable in your environment and working hard always goes a long way. And in a field like performing art you have a lot pf control over how and or where your journey takes you
The performing arts is a specialized area. The 'bad news' is that this limits your options, but the 'GOOD news' is that the internet can be especially helpful for the very reason that it is a specialty area. Do some internet searches for colleges for performing arts and you will find that much of the research has already been done for you. What remains is narrowing the list down to various specialties within each school, and whether you can envision yourself living there during your college years. Look for the opportunity to visit several so that you can speak directly with the instructors in your area of interest. All the best in your pursuits.