How to Pick the Right College

Kristina Kraus
Greater Nevada Credit Union
The long nights and numerous hours spent on applying to colleges and trade schools is over. Now acceptance letters are starting to roll in. Whether you’ve been accepted to one or 100 schools make sure you’re picking the right one by considering the following when making your decision.

Don’t be a Follower

It might be tempting to go to school with your best friend or boyfriend/girlfriend, though it might not be the smartest decision. You should choose the college based on what best fits your educational and career goals. If your relationships are good you shouldn’t need to worry about them lasting if you go to a different school.  

Plan a Visit

You may have heard wonderful things about a particular school, but until you see it for yourself you won’t really know if you feel the same way. Sometimes school environments change, so what was great 20 years ago for your mom or dad might not be the same today. Plus, what’s right for one person may not be the best for another. When you visit the school, make sure you also dedicate some time to exploring its surrounding communities, as well.  

Check out this article from TIME on the best time to visit a college campus.

Take Some Time

It’s exciting to receive an acceptance letter. However, there’s usually no need to take immediate action.  Colleges typically give you several weeks, and sometimes several months, to make a decision so use the time to do any final research on the school or even a second visit.

Look Beyond Location

It’s common for students to either want a school far away from home or to choose the closest one possible. Either way, location is just one factor and no matter where you end up you’ll quickly settle in with new friends, activities and classes. When picking a school, you should also consider the type, size, majors offered, costs, housing, accreditation, available scholarships, food plans, clubs and organizations, and more. Click here for more tips on how to apply and select the right school.
Wherever you end up going to school, you’ll want to make sure you can afford it. Look at scholarship opportunities and financial aid options, and consider part-time work to help cover expenses.
If you’re a Greater Nevada member, or the child, spouse, or parent of a Greater Nevada member you there’s still time to apply for one of the twenty $2,000 scholarships we’re awarding this year.  Applications are due March 31, 2016, so visit our Scholarship page now to learn more.