Considerations for College/Career
The most important factor when considering a college is how the school made you feel. Regardless of all the programs, opportunities, and scholarships, the school you choose should feel like home, a place where you will be able to grow and develop not just academically but in all aspects of life. It starts with self-discovery, where students explore their interests, strengths, and weaknesses. Academic requirements and prerequisites for different careers should be explained, alongside financial considerations and potential sources of financial aid. Providing insight into current job market trends and opportunities is essential. Real-world experiences like internships and guidance from counselors play a crucial role in guiding students through this complex decision-making process. Ultimately, informed choices at this stage set the foundation for a successful and fulfilling future. This page should help you when considering a college/career.
Colleges range from extremely selective (the hardest to be admitted to) to open enrollment (everyone who applies is admitted). As you begin the college search it is helpful to look at your GPA and any test scores you have, and compare them to the students who are admitted to colleges. There are college search websites to help with this. Most colleges give a mid-range of test scores, this is the middle 50% of students who have been accepted. If your test scores are in this range, any our chances of admission are good.
There are colleges with as few as 300 students, and colleges with over 50,000 students, and there are pros and cons to both. Do you like smaller classes with discussions? This will happen more at a smaller college, and there will be more large lecture classes at a very large institution. There can be a variety of opportunities, both in and out of the classroom, at both. To get an idea which you prefer visit different size campuses – this can begin with ones which are local.
If you have an idea what you’d like to study in college, you will want to research colleges with this major. If not, you will want to look at colleges which offer a wide range of majors. Many colleges have a lot of choices, especially the larger colleges. However, some majors, such as Engineering, Nursing, Sports Medicine, and even Business, are not offered at every college, so research colleges carefully.
College Search Websites
Florida Colleges and Universities
Florida Public Universities
Florida Private Universities
Think about where you would like to go to college – any geographic areas you love, or aren’t interested in? This can begin with a family discussion – how far away are parents comfortable with? Many students attend colleges in their home state, for reasons of cost, proximity to home, or just preference for one of our great state universities.
College costs can greatly vary, from attending a public university locally and living at home to attending the most expensive private university in the country. It is important to have a family discussion to be realistic about paying for college. There is a lot of financial aid available consisting of need-based aid and merit-based scholarships – however, it is good to have some less expensive options when applying to college in case you do not receive all the financial aid you need to cover the costs.
Are you studious, artsy, or want big rah rah sports, interested in study abroad, internships, fraternities/sororities, drama or debate? Would you be more comfortable on a friendly, accepting campus, or are excited by a very competitive academic environment? These are all things to consider when looking at colleges. If interested, research Visual & Performing Arts Colleges or Military Academies.
Visiting Colleges and Tours
This is the best way to learn about a college. It is never too early to visit. If travel is difficult, begin with local campuses – we have a lot in Central Florida. Visits can help you determine if you are more interested in a large or smaller campus, urban or suburban, observe what the student body is like, visit sports facilities, visit specific buildings on campus, dorms, and more. Be sure to register online for an orientation session and campus tour for any campus visit, if possible. ALWAYS let the college admissions office know you are visiting campus. You can also experience virtual college tours online at Youvisit.