On average, college graduates qualify for more opportunities and earn higher wages than individuals without a college degree. With over 4,000 colleges and universities in the United States, choosing a college can be overwhelming. Check out our 8 Steps To Choosing A College: Part 1 to understand how to create your college list!
1. Learn about All Types of Colleges and Universities
Colleges and universities vary widely and offer different types of degrees. Before making your college list, be sure to research the different types of colleges to learn to find your best fit.
2. Compare Campus Sizes
Some colleges have larger student populations than others. The campus size and student population impacts classroom size, number of majors and classes offered, number of organizations, and student to professor ratio. Researching each college will help you understand which college is the best fit for you.
3. Consider the Location and Distance of the College From Your Hometown
Location also impacts your college experience. Remember, you will be commuting for 4 years. Would you like to live at home? Go away for college? Can you afford 4 years of travel expenses? Pick a college based on what works best for you.
4. Research the Majors and Programs Offered
Every college has specific majors, minors, and programs you may choose from. A college major is the subject area that you will specialize in and build job skills. Your major and degree can have a lasting impact on your post-college work experiences and salary earnings. Be sure to do your research before selecting a major!
5. Check Out Your Room and Board Options
Whether you are looking to live off-campus or on, the cost of living is a significant expense. If you will be living on campus, find out about affordable housing and dining options. Be sure to check out the dorms, dining halls, meal plan options, and off-campus housing during the process.
6. Explore Extracurricular Activities
Extracurricular activities are a crucial complement to your academic experience. Look for a college that offers programs and activities that interest you and will inspire you to learn and grow.
7. Visit the Campus Facilities
Going to college is more than just sitting in classes, so be sure to explore the campus environment. Make sure the facilities meet your standards. Be sure to visit places such as the library, recreational center, and student center.
8. Know the Cost of Attendance (COA)
The cost of attendance is the total expense to attend college each year. The cost of attendance is different for each college. Before you finalize your school of choice, make sure you consider all potential costs. Be sure to look into all types of financial aid and the eligibility requirements.