Deciding where to attend college or university is an exciting but major decision for anyone to make, especially for someone who has only recently graduated from high school. With the cost of tuition continuing to rise, students and parents want to make sure they are getting a good value for their money. Here are four factors that prospective students might want to consider when choosing a college.
Cost is one of the key factors that people consider when choosing where to pursue their post-secondary education. Spending loads of money or taking on large amounts of debt is not a good choice for everyone, particularly those who are unsure what field of study they wish to follow going into college.
However, college administrators such as President of Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania Bashar Hanna know that price should not be the only factor that people consider in their search. For example, the more expensive private colleges are often able to give generous scholarship packages to qualified students in need. Public universities usually offer tuition at a lower rate for those who are residents of the state where the school is located.
Residency requirements notwithstanding, location is another important factor when it comes to college choice. Going to college somewhere close to home has the advantage of a shorter drive back home, which makes it easier to visit more often. However, attending college can be a great opportunity to move away from home and experience a new town or city. Going to college far away from home can be appealing to people who wish to become more independent from their families. This is a personal decision that depends on the desires of each individual student.
Besides the distance from home, it is important to consider the location of the school itself. Some students prefer the wide range of opportunities and activities available in a large city, while others might find the hustle and bustle distracting to their studies. The regional climate is another factor to think about, especially since many college students do a lot of walking between classes.
There are pros and cons of both smaller and larger schools. Students who attend smaller schools are more likely to have smaller classes and form one-on-one relationships with their professors. Larger schools, however, provide more of certain resources, such as larger libraries and athletic facilities. This is a factor that comes down to what is more important to the one who is entering college.
4. Programs Available
For those who have a good idea about what career field they wish to enter, ensuring that the college they are attending offers a major in that field is essential. It is also a good idea to look at things such as internship and networking opportunities, the option of working with faculty on research, clubs that provide chances to do volunteer work, and other options that help students gain experience in the field.
These are four of the many factors that students should take into consideration when deciding where to attend college or university.