Ask The Swag Gal, March 3, 2010
It must be Wednesday because it is time for another edition of ‘Ask The Swag Gal’!
I have noticed a bunch of questions regarding college, so I thought I would help you high school seniors out by giving my advice on how to choose a college, and what happens if the college you choose turns out to be the wrong one.
Dear Swag Gal,
My username is Superandomness. In the next couple of months, I have to choose a college to go to for the next four years. My top two choices are a tie. They’re equal on academics, financials, campus, food, etc. I like them both, and I don’t know how to choose! What do you suggest? What would you do?
Thanks so much!
Wow, it sounds like you have a win-win situation- lucky you! And it seems as if you have put a lot of thought into the fundamentals like academics, how much the colleges cost, and campus life. However, there is more to college then those basic items.
The first thing I would do when trying to choose between two schools is make a list of everything that is important to you. This should include things like: how big of a school you want, how much of a campus life do you imagine having, are there fraternities/sororities, do you want a school in an urban setting or rural, etc. Then see if one of the schools has more of the amenities you want then the other.
Another thing you must do, if at all possible, is take a tour of the campus. I have found this to be the single most defining thing that can help you make a decision on which school to go to. Colleges might look the same on paper, but when you actually visit the school, you tend to find there are huge differences.
Now, if you pick a school and after a bit you realize it isn’t the school for you, there is always the possibility of transferring. I know plenty of people who started at one university and ended up graduating from another. The transfer process is much easier then getting into a college in the first place, just make sure to keep your GPA up so the new school will accept you. So don’t stress yourself out too much because there is always a way to change your mind if you end up picking the wrong campus.
For those of you reading this post who haven’t figured out what college they want to attend, I want to put it out there that many teenagers are just not ready to jump from high school to higher learning. There are plenty of kids who do a gap year. There are still other students who know exactly what they want to be, and a trade school might be better for them than a typical four-year university.
I hope this answers your question, Superandomness. If anyone else has some good advice on how to pick a college, please post it in the comments. I know we all benefit from each other’s wisdom. And remember, if you have a question, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.