Archive for the ‘College Decisions’ Category
Is the experience worth an unpaid internship?
Have a thought or an answer? Leave a reply below.
We’ve also asked our @Cappex Twitter followers to chime in! Here’s what people are saying on Twitter:
School’s out for the summer! If you just finished up your junior year, you’ve only got one more to go before you head to college. Right now, there are two paths you can take:
Stressful Senior Year = “I didn’t plan ahead and now I have too much college stuff to worry about!”
Fun Senior Year = “I planned ahead and my college application process was so simple!”
You have the power to make either of these happen. I recommend Fun Senior Year, but that’s just me.
Planning ahead and getting started on your college application process before school starts again in the fall is easier than you think. A little time this summer can go a long way. Spending time preparing yourself for the actual applications will make your life less painful come senior year.
Information is POWER.
Checking out different schools’ applications will give you a good idea of what to expect when you start filling out your own. You’ll find there are a lot of similar questions and essay topics across the board. You may even realize that you have answers to some of these essay questions already! If not, take a few minutes each week to brainstorm what you could write about. Hint: the best essays do not happen overnight; they develop over time.
Think about how much time you spend online or scrolling through Facebook. Now, think about exchanging 15 of those aimless browsing minutes for a virtual tour of a college campus. You’ll notice features that you like and dislike, perks to certain schools, and more that will help you narrow down your college search.
Remember your teachers.
Who did you love? Who did you get along with well? Who believes in you? Making a list of any teacher you’d like to write a letter of recommendation for you will motivate you to ask them earlier, rather than last minute when they have stacks of student requests waiting.
Meet up with college friends.
Think of anyone you know who will be coming back home for the summer from their first year of college. They are seriously awesome sources of information about college life. They’ll be able to relate to you better than a book or website, and they’ll probably be more candid about the perks and downfalls of campuses and schools.
Bottom line? No amount of preparation is too much. Even the tiniest amount will be beneficial.
The other bottom line? Making a profile on Cappex today is a great way to prepare yourself for the college application process and find the perfect school for you!
Choosing a college major can be a very stressful time. While some people apply to specific programs in college and go to college knowing what they want to do, others really need to learn more about themselves before picking a major. Remember, college majors are important but they won’t necessarily push you into a box for the rest of your life. Don’t freak out! Many music majors can go to med school and pre-med students can wind up at law school.
Here are some helpful suggestions:
What do you love to do?
Think really hard about what you love to do. Picture the classes you get excited about going to. Classes you get excited about doing the reading. Is there a major that involves many of these things?
What are you skilled in?
Be honest with yourself. What are you good at? What classes have you always excelled in? More often than not, these will overlap with what you love to do. Remember, majors can lead to a field. You wouldn’t want to base your career on something that you aren’t good at.
Do you already know what job you want to do?
If you know what job you want to do after you graduate, look into what majors best prepare you for that job. Talk to people in that field. For example, if you want to be a political journalist, maybe journalists you meet will tell you not to go to journalism school but to be a history/polysci double major and write for your school paper.
Planning on Grad School?
If you’re planning on going to grad school, look into what types of majors they want. For example, if you want to go to medical school, you probably want to be a pre-med-related major. If you want to go to a certain class of law schools, find out what types of majors they like. Put yourself in the best position possible to get accepted to the grad school of your dream.
Ok remember, DON’T FREAK OUT! College majors can be important (especially if you are planning on going to a specific graduate program that requires a specific major). However, if you are getting a general liberal arts degree, your specific major might not affect at all your success in life in whatever field you want to go in to. Pick something you love, are passionate about, and will put you on the path to success in a career you want to start.
Want to search for scholarships or find your perfect college fit? Make your profile today on Cappex!
It is finally spring! This means two things: warmer weather and hearing back from colleges. Waiting to hear if you got into your top choices is scary for sure. Your fate is in the hands of admission offices all over the country! You wait for weeks on end! Finally a sleek, white envelope arrives for you. It’s got your name on it and your destiny taunts you from inside! You open it! You’re…….rejected.
Is your life over? No. Here’s why:
It ain’t personal.
The college admissions people learn about who you are along with thousands of other applicants at the same time. A ton of students get rejected from every school. Your rejection might be due to one or two specific items on your application, but it’s likely a numbers issue. In the past few years, more students have applied to more schools than ever before. This makes elite schools more elite and fills up state universities quickly. Many large state schools are taking more out-of-state students who will pay higher out-of-state tuition to make up for cut funding. That certainly has nothing to do with you.
It helps you make a choice.
Remember when you first started your college search and choosing where to apply was daunting because there were so many colleges to look through? Too many choices can make the decision harder and draw it out too long. If you’ve been rejected, you can now focus on where you did get in and find the perks of those schools. Why did you apply there in the first place? Revisit your favorite things about those schools.
You’re not alone, Smartypants.
You are probably in the same boat as thousands of other smart, talented and driven students who did not get into their top choices. The cool, good news is that this means schools that used to be considered “middle of the road” or “second tier” are now filling up with very qualified students who didn’t make the excruciatingly selective cut of the best colleges in the country. Smart, talented and driven students don’t all attend the same school. They are all over! Not just attending the Ivy League.
Honestly, if you ask around, you’ll find that getting rejected can be the best thing that happens to you. It is not the end of the world – it is the beginning of your next adventure!
Learn more about hearing back from schools on Cappex.com!
We have a new web series that we’re excited to share with the world of college-bound students. It’s titled “The College Diaries: I Wish I Would’ve Known…” and each episode is a new topic that students themselves submitted based on their college experience.
Our first topic was inspired by Cappex user, Rachael K. who wanted to know how to really research a college without getting distracted by the bells and whistles of it all.
Here’s the answer:
[youtube width="560" height="315"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMJQxwCO3qc[/youtube]
What do you wish you would’ve known while you were applying to college? You can see your name and topic in an upcoming episode–just leave a comment below!
Dear High School Juniors,
Your college search process can be a great experience! In fact, it should be. It’s like a shopping spree for your future. My advice? Build a college list with a strong foundation, some exciting choices, and a few options that’ll have you on the edge of your seat.
If you are serious about attending college and earning a degree, it’s imperative to have at least one “safety school”. Two is better, but having at least one school where you are basically guaranteed admission will make your entire process less stressful. Be honest with yourself. Take a look at your grades, test scores and activities and find schools for which you are over-qualified. Find out if these schools are rolling admission, and if that’s the case, apply ASAP. Think of rolling admission as first-come-first-serve; the earlier you get your application in, the more open spots there are!
The best part of your college search is finding your ideal schools. The schools that you think you can get into with your credentials, a killer essay and great teacher recommendations. Some might be a little stretch, others might be right on par with your GPA and test scores. These are the schools that offer the majors and programs in which you are interested! They’re located in the parts of the country where you want to live–whether it’s 5 minutes from home or a plane ride across the continent! Take a few leaps with the schools in this juicy section of your college list.
If you need help finding ideal schools, ask yourself what you might like to study. Love English classes? Look for schools with terrific creative writing programs. Science nut? Search for schools with excellent research facilities. You can also think about where you’d like to study. If you’re a skiing fanatic, seek out schools in Colorado or Montana where skiing can still be a part of your life. When in doubt, create a profile at Cappex! With hundreds of colleges and scholarships, Cappex can help you find your perfect school and a way to pay for them.
The final tier of your college list can be a couple schools that are big challenges. These schools are more selective or schools you’ve dreamt about but can’t guarantee you’d get into. Pick one or two colleges that will certainly test you – first on the application and later if you wind up attending. You never know what they are looking for and you just might surprise yourself!
One thing to keep in mind: don’t completely overwork yourself. Take time on each application so you can be proud of the finished products you send out.
This process can be stressful, but find ways to make it fun and you’ll be surprised how excited you’ll be for your future as you build your college list!
Today’s question comes in honor of spring break:
According to STA Travel’s website, 49% of student travelers this year plan to spend more than $699 on spring break trips.
Is spending bank on big spring break travels the way to go or do you think there are more frugal ways to have a great spring break?
Have a thought or an answer? Leave a reply below.
We’ve also asked our @Cappex Twitter followers to chime in! Here’s what people are saying on Twitter:
A lot of students deciding on college worry about choosing the “right” or “wrong” school. In reality, there is no “right” or “wrong” school for you. You can only decide where to attend for the “right” or “wrong” reasons!
It’s definitely important to have a strong idea of the type of school you’d like to attend, but keep in mind that there are many schools that will fit the criteria you’ve chosen. Don’t set your heart on your “perfect” school — it doesn’t exist! One school might fit more of your criteria than another, but ultimately you are in charge of your happiness and success at any university you attend. Seriously – you have that power!
The buzz in the halls during your junior and senior years of high school will most certainly be about where everyone is going to college. Where are your friends going? Where is your boyfriend or girlfriend going? Where are your – gasp! – enemies going? Often, groups of friends will try to apply to all of the same schools. A girlfriend will follow her boyfriend to his dream university instead of her own. The problem with basing your decision on someone else’s vision of the future is that your vision for yourself gets clouded. It’s super important to remember the criteria you’ve chosen for yourself and be honest about what will make YOU happy. College is one of the best opportunities to expand your awareness of the world, so don’t be afraid to stretch yourself and meet new people.
Take it from Amy Yao, a freshman at St. Lawrence University in New York. She followed her boyfriend to college and couldn’t figure out why she spent her entire freshman year as a miserable student, when she had been so excited about college before. Amy was so gloomy that she considered transferring. When the transfer date came and went she finally leveled with herself and realized she considered St. Lawrence beneath her because it wasn’t her dream school. Amherst and Tufts had been her frontrunners. She chose St. Lawrence for the wrong reasons and because of that found it difficult to accept any of the good criteria the school could offer her. Fortunately, now that her tune has changed, Amy is taking charge and turning the “wrong” school into a great collegiate experience. A good attitude makes a big difference, but starting college your way will certainly make the transition easier.
It’s tough when you are facing pressure from loved ones, friends and significant others when it comes to choosing a school. Its even tougher when you put pressure on yourself to find the perfect education. The best you can do is go with your gut and follow your own interests!
Here are some other tips for avoiding mistakes when it comes to choosing a college.
What mistakes in choosing a college have you or people you know come across? Leave a comment in the section below!
Touring school after school after school can definitely get redundant and make your college search more painful than it needs to be. It can also get very expensive if most of your choices are out-of-state. Here are some sweet options that will definitely mix it up and might save you a few pennies!
Alfred University in New York offers a bike tour to prospective students. Not just any bike tour mind you. You’ll be riding a 7-person bike around the campus, pedaling as a tour guide helps to steer! This is certainly a one of a kind tour and your guide will take you on a special route around the campus. You need to sign up in advance, and these bizarre bike tours are offered on Mondays and Fridays only. Find out more – and watch a video of the bike! – on Alfred University’s website.
Eckerd College in Florida does campus tours via boat! A member of Eckerd’s Waterfront Program, one of the largest collegiate water sports programs in the country, leads a 45 minute tour around Boca Ciega Bay. Prospective students are encouraged to sign up beforehand, as capacity is limited. Boating tours are offered on sporadic Fridays throughout the school year. Eckerd also offers a unique community event called Evenings at Eckerd where you can view theatrical performances or lectures by current staff and students. Check out their website for more cool details on campus activities!
Stanford University in California provides student led golf cart tours of the central campus, including some additional views that are not offered on the walking tour. You need to sign up in advance and it costs $5, but is totally worth it to get a more relaxed perspective of the area. Make your reservation for any day of the week online!
Virtual campus tours are becoming increasingly helpful to students who are unable to visit their top choice schools in person. Apps have been developed for the iPad and iPhone that offer photos, virtual tours and maps of campus buildings. Check out the apps developed for the College of Charleston, the College of New Jersey, and Washington State University to name a few.
Now, if you’re like me, you don’t have an iPhone yet. Don’t fret! A lot of schools put interactive tours and informative videos on their websites under the Admissions page. Cappex also offers video tours – and super helpful statistics and deadlines – for many schools around the country. Just search a school name in the search bar on the right side of the homepage. These are excellent and easy ways of visiting a campus without the hassle of travel.
It’s April, and you have gotten into multiple colleges. All of a sudden what you dreamed of all along has become this overwhelming reality! First off, take a deep breath and pat yourself on the back. Congratulations! You are in a great position!
While it may seem like a huge life decision you are not ready to make, there are easy ways to narrow down what schools you should be considering. It is always important, while you are deciding which school to go to, to remember that you are in a great position. While finding the right fit is important, a lot of the college experience is what you make of it and you will probably have a great and fulfilling time no matter where you go. Today I will be focusing on maximizing your experience during your campus visit.
Most schools will have a campus day for prospective students who have been accepted. If you have not been to visit the school yet, it is especially important to try to attend this. You will get a tour and the tables will have turned. As opposed to you trying to impress the schools, they will be doing everything they can to get you to attend. Even if you have already been to the school, this is still good to attend because sometimes your impressions will have changed and you will learn much more about the school.
When you are on campus, make an attempt to try to connect with someone you might know at the school. Whether it is a former high school friend who is older than you or a family friend or an alumni connection through your guidance counselor; it is crucial to get honest assessments from as many current students at the school as possible. Everyone is different, so it is important to take into account that while a school might seem great for someone, their experience might not necessarily be yours. Ask them what they love or dislike about their school. Most students around campus will tend to be positive about their school no matter what, so it is a good idea to try to get a really honest take on the school.
Better yet, even if your parents are staying in a hotel, try to stay with a student at the school in the dorms. This is the best way to see the school experience, meet a lot of current students, and see what life is really like at the school. Shadow this student to a day of classes (this might be difficult for some smaller classes but for general lectures you should be fine). At some schools, certain dorms have a specific kind of student that it caters to so remember to ask inquisitive questions to find out what the different types of dorms are to see what would be the right fit for you should you attend.
If you are applying to a specific school within a university or a smaller niche program, try to meet with professors within that program. Contact the department head in advance of your campus visit and ask to shadow a student for a day or sit in on classes. Many programs will be glad to facilitate you. A lot of professors are way more accessible than you think and you can find their emails through easy website searches.
Remember, prepare for your campus visit as much as possible to maximize how much you learn about the school!!
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