I NEED TO SIGN UP FOR A COLLEGE SOONN HELP?
Question by debbie: I NEED TO SIGN UP FOR A COLLEGE SOONN HELP?
ok so going to graduate next year (2010)
and i really reallllyy want to go to college.
do i start doin all that stuff now, during summer, or during my senior year??
andd what do you do?
how do u sign up?
im so confused and scared for next year!
thanks so much!
Answer by Stephanie C
This is a big decision and a lengthy process, so it’s understandable that you’re confused and a little scared. But try to remain calm – college is as much a financial decision as it is an emotional one, so you’ll need a clear head.
First of all, talk to your parents. Find out what they think about college, and what money (if any) has been set aside for your college education. If you’re the oldest (or an only child), they may not be familiar with the financial aid process themselves, and the time for them to learn has come (in fact, one year ago would have actually been a better time to start learning, but better to start now than put it off any longer!). There’s a link to a book review for Paying For College Without Going Broke in the Sources – that’s a great book for your parents to lread regarding the financial aid process.
For colleges, the idea is to pick at least three schools, if not more, that you want to apply to. You should have at least one “safety” school (one where you’re a super-great applicant, and it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll get in), one “good fit” school (for which you are an average applicant, and are pretty sure you’ll get in) and one “reach” school (you’re on the lower end of applicants, but you might still get in). Like I said, three minimum, but try to find as many as you can that sound good. (The Princeton Review website is a great free resource for looking for colleges, also listed in the Sources below.)
VISIT COLLEGES. I can’t stress this enough! For years I thought I wanted to go to New York University (NYU) in New York City. It was my dream! But then I visited NYU and Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), and I got a really bad vibe when I visited NYU, but I loved RIT the minute I stepped on the campus. You have to visit campuses, meet professors, and find out if you feel comfortable there. This is also important, because many schools will ask if you’ve visited the school on your application, and will be more likely to accept you if you’ve shown enough interest in the school to visit it.
Once you’ve picked your schools, most applications can be done online nowadays. Read the whole application before you fill it out. Some of them requires essays – actually, most of them. Run your essays by friends and English teachers before you submit your application – make sure they are the best essays you can write!
There’s a little more to it, but I don’t want to overwhelm you. Ask your school’s guidance counselor if you have any more questions! Good luck!
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