The college application process might be really stressful for many high school students. There are over 5000 colleges and universities in United States, each of which has unique features such as location, teaching methods, activities, clubs, and so on. It makes choosing institutions for your college list even more difficult.
How do you find your perfect school? What do seniors need to keep in mind? Today I will give you some tips to help you not to go crazy during your application process.
Think about your interests
Think about things that you are passionate about. The educational institution should specialize in what you want to do in the future. It should motivate you to move in this direction further. An important part of studying are internships and professional programs. They allow students to gain work experience and make useful connections during their studies.
Think about whether you will be provided with development opportunities at this university? For example, if you are interested in studying computer science, then universities such as MIT and Carnegie Mellon are suitable for you. Or if you want to become a psychologist, Yale or Princeton universities would be good options for you.
Location is a really important criterion for the choice of the college. You should feel comfortable in the place where you will be spending most of your time. If you are used to skyscrapers and vibrant nightlife, I do not recommend choosing a college in the countryside. In contrast, if you are used to a quiet, peaceful place, you shouldn`t apply to schools in such big cities as New York. By the way, by applying to a college that is close to your home, you can benefit from saving money on accommodation, food, and travel.
Not everyone can afford to pay for all the years of education. Therefore, many universities provide financial aid for children from low-income families. There are two types of financial aid:
Need-based: Need-based scholarships are defined as financial aid given to students on the basis of financial needs.
Merit-based: This is the help that is given to the student for his special achievements and awards. Unlike need-based, it does not pay attention to the financial situation of the family. Unfortunately, not every college offers it. Here are some educational institutions that provide it:
Ohio State University.
Penn State University.
University of Arizona.
University of California at Berkeley.
University of California at San Diego.
University of Colorado.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
University of Virginia.
There are a lot of websites and IG accounts that have a lot of resources for students to help them to find more about the colleges they are going to apply to. For example:
College Results Online
The College For All program ( IG )
Every college has its own website where you can find all the information about majors, fin.aid. There you can often come across advice from students who have studied there. It would be a good idea to connect with them on social media and ask for their experience.
We asked students about their experience of applying to different colleges and here are their answers.
«I will be attending Amherst College in the fall of 2021 there are a variety of reasons why, but the one that I can say had the biggest impact on my decision was if it was my preference. A lot of people choose schools based off of where they hear of often (i.e Harvard or Princeton) and then there are the students who choose schools based off of where the people around them want them to go. I fell absolutely in love with Amherst College when I visited the summer into my sophomore year and from then my family tried to convince me that it wasn’t the “best” option for me because I’m intelligent and schools like the ivy league existed. However it was my choice, I would be spending four years of my life at whatever college I chose so it had to be preferred by me not anyone else”
Lisa, Brown University,'24
"For me, the most important thing in my choice was the available financial assistance and the professionalism of the professors who work in the college. I was also pleased with the availability of many courses in the specialty that I chose."
In conclusion, don`t stress yourself during the application process. Remember that it is just a period in your life and it won`t affect your future success. Best of luck!