Posts Tagged ‘choosing a college’

Look for the College Fit, Not the Ranking

April 4, 2018

For many high school juniors, college planning has begun. This, of course, includes the college search. College Direction suggests that students put rankings at the bottom of their considerations and concentrate on researching schools that are a good fit for them. This fit should includes academic, financial and social as well. Rankings just add to the hype surrounding college admissions and rarely have little to do with the educational experience a student will receive. When College Direction is researching schools for a student, we are much more concerned with the undergraduate experience and the four-year graduation rates at different schools. To find colleges with the best fit, students should do some self-reflection and write down a list of qualities they consider important when choosing a school. The colleges they choose to explore more completely should have as many of these qualities as possible.

 

 

 

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If I have never heard of the college, how can it be any good?

February 13, 2013

I know that college affordability is a big concern for families today. Parents want to make sure they are getting the most value for their investment. However, I do get concerned when I hear a parent say, “I don’t know how eager I am to pay for a college with a name that I have not heard of.” Surely, they must know that there are many wonderful schools besides those those that everyone has heard of.  But do they?

One thing parents need to understand is that many colleges that are not well known are very fine, highly respected schools.  They provide excellent educations and also frequently award merit scholarships for high achieving students.  They can make college affordable, whereas prestigious, well known institutions may not be able to do so.

As a private college counselor, I truly believe that it is not the name of the school, but what a student gains from the college experience that will make a difference in the future.  Many wonderful lesser-known schools provide close relationships with professors who go on to become mentors.  Students often can participate in research opportunities at an undergraduate level and are in classes that focus more on discussion than just lecture.

Families need to broaden their college horizons and look at a wide variety of schools that will fit their child academically, financially, and personally.  Also, check the graduation rates and look for schools committed to seeing their students graduate in four years.

 

College Admissions: Don’t Limit Yourself in Your College Search

May 29, 2012

Too many high school juniors only consider colleges and universities they have heard of when they begin their college search.  Surprisingly, many students choose schools because their friends are going there.  Other students choose colleges impulsively and for the wrong reasons.  It is important to consider what criteria you are looking for in a college experience.  Then look for schools that seem like a good fit.  If you live on the West coast, you should not limit yourself to colleges in California, Oregon, or Colorado.  Likewise, if you live on the East coast, look at some schools in Illinois, Washington, and Arizona.  Colleges look for applicants who will provide geographic diversity. In fact, geographic diversity is a factor that might give you an edge in the college admissions process.  Check out this article for some schools that might be good choices for you.

http://www.golocalprov.com/lifestyle/college-admissions-10-western-colleges-worth-summer-road-trip/