Things to Consider When Applying to College

This is a post for my young readers…

It’s finally time to take the next big step into your academic career – COLLEGE! Getting to this point is a huge accomplishment, and you should celebrate it. Applying to college can be very overwhelming. Where to go and what to study? How to complete an application? How to write an essay? How to pay for it? The list goes on and on.

Here are some of the first few things you should put on your application checklist when you start your college journey.

Look into Scholarships and Grants

While you will most likely have to take out some degree of school loans, that’s not the only way to pay for your education. Hundreds of websites offer scholarships, and all you have to do is do a quick google search. Think about traits that make you unique; if you’re a minority, you can look up scholarships for minorities online. Don’t forget to complete your FAFSA and see if you’re eligible for any grants based on your family’s income.

You may also be eligible for merit-based scholarships at the school of your choice, depending on your GPA. The point is: don’t just succumb to loans because everyone else is. Try to find ways to reduce that debt!

Have an Idea of What You Want to Focus On 

It’s ok not to know what you want to do for your whole life at the ripe young age of 18 – honestly. But keep in mind that the longer you wait to decide on a major, the more you’ll be paying for classes that may or may not count towards your degree, which is money lost. Having a general idea of what you want to study at school will save you an extra semester (or years) of tuition.

Spend the time to look into areas you’re interested in before school starts. You’ll also want to make sure that the colleges you’re looking into have the degree programs you’re interested in: not all schools offer the same programs.

Think About the Cost of Living 

The cost of tuition is one thing, but have you considered the cost of living in a specific city? If you’re dreaming of going somewhere lux for school (think LA or New York), realize that everything there will be more expensive, right down to gas and food.

The cost of tuition and room/board for dorms will be higher in cities with a higher cost of living. You can do a google search to see which cities have the highest (and lowest) cost of living.

Extracurriculars and School Amenities 

Not all schools offer the same student life atmosphere. Commuter schools (schools where most of the students have lived around the city and drive to the university every day) will not have the same atmosphere as a classic university where most students come from afar and stay in the dorms.

Make sure to see what kind of amenities the school has to offer. Do they have a workout center (and how nice is it), a dining hall, restaurants? How nice are the dorms? Is there a grocery store or medical center on campus? Basically, will you have everything you need on campus?


Going to college is an exciting and exhilarating experience: don’t let the stress of applications take away from this moment! Just remember that as fun as it is, it is also a considerable investment. Don’t forget that every class you take costs money, so think about your schedule very decisively. Consider your current life versus the life you want to lead: see if the college you’re looking at can offer you the experience you want! It’s your future: you get to be picky!



Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.