We feel that the best way to increase student success is to make certain the match between the student and the school is solid and the student has a GREAT first year. The following will help students through the process.
SELECTING THE RIGHT COLLEGE
You have to be careful in selecting the right college. Picking a college or university today is very different than your parents may have faced.- You are likely able to attend a better school than you thought. Carefully make a decision from your profile and goals as to which institution fits you best.
Don’t write off any school that interests you. The right combination of school for you should be what you look for — for example, costs should not be a determiner nor should high ratings in magazines or other media. You do your own search and find the right match for you.
Also consider important items such as safety and security, resources essential for your major, the social life at the school, financial solvency, and what happens to their graduates? Is this school a good investment for your future?
Five Important Steps:
Do you really want to go to college? Not everyone should go to college or university after high school. Many people today are entering college or university in their 30’s, 40’s, 50’s and beyond.
1. Prepare a detailed profile of you that helps understand your academic ability, personal characteristics, goals, and attitudes about work, education, and the life you want to live.
2. Make sure you can afford it without running up extensive loans.
3. Make sure you can stay at that school for the long term.
4. Is the school going to meet your expectations academically and socially?
5. Of course, you have to be concerned about cost. Consider the school’s match before you figure out how to pay for it because you might leave out schools that would fit your needs but may be perceived as too expensive. There are many resources available that the Financial Aid Office of the school should be able to help you find.
There are many other things to consider in your personal profile but this is a good start to making this very important decision.
To prevent this from happening to you, make sure when you arrive that you are comfortable with all of the arrangements like room, food, activities, and extra-curricular options as you wanted. You need to feel that you are in a good environment to achieve your goals.
THINGS TO DO DURING THE FIRST FEW DAYS
Who is your adviser? Does he/she have a reputation for helping students succeed?
Do you know when you will meet with him/her? Set up an appointment to meet if that is not already established.
Do you have a plan for the first quarter?
How will you know you are on track or in need of help?
WHO IS GOING TO HELP YOU IF YOU HAVE SERIOUS PROBLEMS?
These are essential questions to answer in the first few weeks of school. If you put them off, you may end up in serious trouble.
Enrolling is only the start. Now the hard work must really begin. Maintain good communication between you and your faculty and staff.
If you at any time in that first two weeks feel uncomfortable about any of the activities or academic efforts, go to your adviser immediately. It is better to change than to stay in a school that you have found is not the right fit for you. If you do this early enough you may get a refund on what you have paid.
The FINANCIAL AID OFFICE AT ANY COLLEGE OR UNIVERSITY YOU CONSIDER SHOULD BE MORE THAN willing to assist you in creating a plan that will meet your needs. There are many resources including those below that you should be able to include in your evaluation of whether you can afford this school or not.
You should attempt to keep your loan amounts as low as possible. That is why we believe loans should be the last to implement.
*We do not intend our workshops or services to replace the counselors at your school who are good resources for you. What we can do is make certain that your college and university plans are your plans and not a template that could be used by large populations not targeted to your personal success.*