By Kaitlyn Booker
Senior year is a very busy time for most people. You have graduation, parties, work, and for some… choosing a college. Choosing a college can be the most stressful part of some people’s final year of high school. It’s a life decision to make while you’re only a teenager. No pressure, right?
Some things need to be decided before choosing a college. First, you should have narrowed down what you want to major in. The major should go along your chosen career path. For example, you wouldn’t go into law school when you want to be a doctor. Choosing a major is the most important part of picking a college.
After you have decided that, you need to think about if you want to stay close to home or move farther away. The perks about staying here are you’ll be close to your friends and family, and you might even be able to stay at home without the added stress of paying rent. A downside would be you would still live with your parents and wouldn’t have the independence you would have on your own. You could stay close by and live alone or with a roommate; that way you can still be near your parents when you need them but can still have a little bit more freedom. Another possibility would be moving away and living off campus or in college housing. A good thing about that is you will get to see a little bit more of the world and learn what it’s like being completely on your own. The negative side… you’re completely on your own. You can’t go to your parents when you need money or have someone’s shoulder to cry on.
Another thing you should think about is how big you want your school to be. Do you want a small college where you will have more opportunities to participate, ask questions, and have a professor who actually knows who you are? Or do you want to go to a larger college where they’ll have more students with more money to pay for better teachers, more resources, and more activities?
The last step is to make sure the school you’ve chosen has your major. If not, you need to look at a new college. Your major is the main point of college, and if they don’t have your chosen career path, you need to find somewhere that does.
After all of those things, start applying! Don’t pass up a chance to go to a great college just because you think you can’t afford it or they won’t accept you anyway. There are scholarships, loans, and grants that can help you pay your fees, and believe it or not, grades and test scores are not the only things colleges look at. Talk it over with your teachers, counselors, parents, etc., and decide if you think that college is a good fit for you.