Choosing a college is one of the most important decisions you can make. While some people do transfer, the vast majority of students stay in one place for at least four years. If you are looking to make an error free college choice, you’ll want to consider the factors below.
The Size and Distance
Your college will be more than just the place where you study. For at least four years, it will be the center of your life. As such, you will want to make very solid decisions about how far you want to travel and how large of a campus with which you are comfortable. If you want more social opportunities and a larger community, you’ll want to look at larger colleges. Want a more intimate setting where you’ll get to know your faculty better? A local college might work. Those with family commitments might need to narrow their search down to local colleges, while those who like to travel might care more about the city in which the college is located than the course of study offered there.
One of the most important choices you make will be your major, so choosing a school with a strong major department is crucial. If you are looking for a specific major, you might want to make sure that your school offers that program and that the major itself is well regarded. Not sure what you’re looking for yet? Try looking into different schools like UC Clermont College to get a better sampling of what’s out there. You should be judging a school not just by its overall reputation, but also by the reputation of the department in which you want to study.
Think About Yourself
More than anything, though, you should be on the lookout for a college that is a fit for you. Factors like distance and even cost are one thing, but you want to apply to a college that feels right for your needs. The New York Times called college “more than a prize to be won”, and there’s a great deal of truth to that. You should pick the school that’s going to make you a better person and provide you with the kind of future that you want to live in.
When considering your college choice, look at the factors that matter most to you. Consider academics, but also consider how well the college will fulfill your other needs. With a little planning, you can find the perfect place at which to start your academic future.