When Looking for a College, Start with the Important Characteristics:

Determine location, size, cost, surroundings, appearance, and of course academic level. Finding a college that you love is similar to finding a house, it is not an exact science. Most of the time when you do fall in love you keep that feeling, although anywhere you live will have surprises that you did not expect, both good and bad. Many students do not take the time and energy to effectively research colleges to make good decisions.  33% of students leave the college they started at before their sophomore year, and 50% of students never graduate from the institution they enter. Every person is different, and what resonates with them at a college is generally a good indication of fit, if they look at the appropriate factors.

 Is College only about a Major?

Most students change their minds twice about their major while they are in college, so that should not be the only criteria for picking a college. What I expect students to get out of an education is the ability to write effectively, speak persuasively, and analyze data. Our world is changing and there are jobs that we have not even dreamed of that this new generation will be doing. College teaches you to think and solve problems at a higher level. It gives you the tools to think at a high level, take on new jobs, and handle problems independently.

What Makes a Student Successful at College?

Ultimately the energy and time that a student puts into the positive aspects of college, determine what they get out of it. Studies show that having a good connection with a professor not only leads students to do well at a college, but to be more successful throughout their lives. Taking challenging courses that build on their strengths, being involved in and outside of the classroom with activities, and exposing their minds to new concepts and ways of life. College teaches you to solve problems, live independently, and expand your horizons.

Graduates don’t seem to be getting jobs…

In today’s job market many students do not get the type of job they want right away. The best way to be successful is to have internships in your areas of interest every summer, build a strong resume, and interview effectively. Having good employer recommendations and past work experience can set you apart from other graduates.

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