For me the hardest part was deciding how far away from home did I want to go. I wanted to be away but not too far. This meant that If I needed to get home quickly I could but it also meant that my Mom could not get to me right away.
I also wanted to learn what it was like to be on my own. Could I survive? It turns out I could and I met other people just like me so it became easier.
For me, accepting which college to go to was easy... I wanted to be a majorette for the Spartan Legion Band of Norfolk State University in Norfolk, VA and it was a bus ride to the college and since it was easy to get to, I attended! I am glad I did because when you stay in the dorm such as going to an out of state college or university, it closes during winter, spring and summer break and you have to have a way to get home! Sor for instance if your parents do not have the financial means to come get you or send you money to come home, a nearby program is your best bet! The colleges you apply to will depend on what majors they have that you are interested in. Every school does not carry every major. Maybe that is a good place to start. Maybe Google and see which schools have the major you are interested in and that will help you narrow it down. Godspeed.
For me, I found it tricky to pick which colleges to apply for, because I wasn't sure if a school would "feel right".
I mean, I looked at Niche for months between my junior and senior year. Checking rankings, student reviews, programs. I went to college websites to look at their catalogues to see if I might like the classes.
Yet, I 𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘭𝘭 felt lost. I had no idea what college environments were like at all.
If I could redo the college application process, I would do more campus tours. Reach out to current students on campus more...
Either by doing more virtual Student Q&A's or request a meeting with the school to meet a current student [I did this once! However, I would've did more meetings with other people for other majors I was interested in].
What helped me select a school in the end is comparing financial aid packages. I choose the school that my family could afford the most.
The rest of the college - majors, programs, campus life, etc - I believed I could figure out as I went along, and made them secondary priorities.
You don't need to follow this process, of course! :) If you put in effort into understanding the schools' vibes and student life on campus, you'll figure out which school you'll want to go with.
Sending you good luck as you apply for schools :)