3 Steps to Getting Ready for College

By: Sophia Powell 

College is not for everyone, but for those that are planning to go it can be challenging to find the right one for them and to be prepared. Most teens have an idea of which one they would like to attend, others dont figure one out till they are about to graduate so finding a college in a short amount of time is hard, but trying to get ready for it and getting ready for classes can be harder, these are some tips to make it easier!

Start Planning Before Senior Year – In order to be ready for college you have to start the planning very early on. This is because going to college is way more than just getting into the college (although that is a very important factor) it’s about finding out where you are going to live, adjusting to the idea of finally being in college, and going to visit the college and town to adapt to the environment and life of being away from your friends and family. Since going to college isn’t necessarily just “going to college”, most teens have to find a job, buy tons of new supplies/necessities for their apartments, and get prepared for classes to start. All in such a small time period. 

Finding the Right College For You – Finding the right college is possibly one of the hardest decisions in some teens’ lives. Choosing the wrong college can lead to undermatching which means that the student feels “lesser” or minor academic esteem which is bad because in most cases the student ends up dropping out which is never a good idea. So the best way to find the right college is to first find an area that you’d like to live in this can be very crucial because if you’re moving to a different area with different weather that you are not used to it can be very hard to adjust, so find somewhere where you can enjoy your college experience and the environment surrounding it. Before fully committing to a college you should most definitely visit it multiple times. Visit once to see if you can even consider this college, twice to make sure you really did like it the first time, and a third time if you think it’s the college for you. For the college you choose you should not only enjoy the physical college but also the academic portion of it since that’s why you’re attending of course, the “right” college should display what you’d like to learn, the people you’d like to surround yourself with, and the right teachers. 

Affording An Education – The reason most people don’t attend college is because they don’t want to but the reason for the kids that want to is that they can’t afford it. Yes, college can be very expensive but there are many different options that can help you reduce the initial cost of attending. One of the biggest and most popular options is doing financial aid. Financial aid is the government’s way of helping kids attend college. How it works is you apply to different financial aid programs, get accepted by one of them. If you get accepted and attend college then you have to keep up good grades in order to keep the financial aid. Another way is by starting dual enrollment in high school. Dual enrollment most of the time are college classes that teens can take in highschool to get ahead and not have to worry about taking those certain classes in college. Dual enrollment is very beneficial because it is free since you’re taking the classes in high school but in order to get these classes you have to maintain a 3.0 or higher gpa, but there are many other options. 

College is great because it can provide you with many more opportunities than just going to work straight out of high school. Going to work after high school isn’t bad because college isn’t for every student. But, college can provide things like job stability, long-term financial stability, and nowadays most places only hire people that have a college degree!

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