Where do YOU want to spend YOUR Next Four Years?
The college coaching industry has grown from some historic campuses and boring professors to a multi-billion dollar industry.
Many high-schoolers have mom, dad, Uncle Joe and their neighbor Tina advising them on where they should go to school. Then theres trying to actually get into said school, and figuring out how to pay for it.
Plus, high schoolers still have school, homework, athletics, hobbies, and so forth.
And then of course, these young folks are having to go through all this while going through the awkwardness of puberty.
It’s no wonder a college coach can charge $250 an hour and no one blinks an eye. It’s easy money!
How to Actually Pick a College
Ok, you don’t want to eeny, meeny, miny, moe your college decision. That would be a mistake. After all, the average college student spends over $30,000 a year on their degree. And some student’s graduate with over $400,000 in college debt. Sheesh!
What you want to do is use common sense.
Common sense means focusing on YOUR big picture. So, ask yourself some simple questions:
- What do I want to do in life?
- What makes me happy?
- How can I achieve my goal(s)?
- Will I be happy while achieving them?
Here’s something else to consider: Will you be able to handle, both mentally and financially, the demands of college? (Check out our making money in college article) Of course, since you are under 18, concepts like debt and self-responsibility are probably going to be new challenges for you. If you are not ready, never feel pressured to rush into college.
A Word of Caution
If debt does’t scare you, regret probably should.
On a sleepy night during my final year of college, I was in the school’s computer lab. I noticed an older man printing out some documents from a computer.
Eventually, we started talking and he told me his life story. The executive summary is this: He was in his 50s and was going back to school to become a nurse. He had worked in the corporate world for the last 30 years. Although he knew he wanted out only a few years after he graduated from college, he had kids and other obligations; and with a not-so-useful degree, he had to put off his passion.
Of course, a male nurse is relatively rare today. It was super rare 30 years ago, so he never considered it a true possibility.
Fortunately for the man above, he was just a few months from graduating from an accelerated nursing program. He seemed really happy for himself and I almost felt happy for him. Now even a few years later, I still remember our conversation.
Conclusion – Choosing a College
If I had read the above advice before I went to college, I would be a different person today. Just kidding.
Really though, choosing a school is both a big decision and a not-so-big one at the same time. You can always transfer later on. And if you dislike going to that school, you can transfer again, or take some time off, or go back to school when you are 50 to become a nurse. Your college will never define you.
The important thing is that you start thinking about your future in a productive and realistic way. Good luck!