The National Centre for Education Studies forecasted that there will be a sudden surge in the number of students enrolling some form of higher education - a steep rise of 17% from 2008 to 2019. College may be the natural next step for high school graduates. Higher education can provide much more than an education – it provides growth in many other areas including social, professional, and personal. New students can expect to meet people from all walks of life, become acquainted with their instructors, and become accustom to a more adult life on their own. College can be viewed as a preparatory for nearly every aspect of your life.
College life consists of various other supplementary issues, which should be addressed in order to evolve as an efficient adult professional. This juncture of your life is a very volatile period in which you will be introduced to new places, people, and an entirely new curriculum. So how do you navigate these waters?
I’m ready – now what?
• While preparation really begins in high school via your cumulative GPA, class choices, activities, and letters of recommendation, first and foremost, you need to choose a school that fits your needs. If you are in pursuit of becoming a doctor, it is imperative that you choose a school which offers the necessary undergraduate programs to move on and gain acceptance to medical school.
Bear in mind that your SAT/ACT scores matter – prepare adequately and do the absolute best you can. Think of applying to college as applying for a job – sell yourself. Once you’ve found the school that is right for you, gather all of your scores and other materials and apply.
• So you’ve been accepted – great! One of the first concerns the majority of new students have is the actual cost of college. Luckily, there may be a plethora of options available to qualified students today. Financial aid and private loans are available to those who qualify – read our Types of Financial Aid section for a more in-depth look at the options you may pursue if qualified.
• As a new college student, you have the unique opportunity to sustain growth in both a personal and professional manner. Your priorities, in terms of academic and personal goals, should be fixed and not change under any circumstances. Determination and commitment are key when reaching goals in academia. Utilization of all opportunities and resources is a must; work directly with your instructors, seek help and guidance from your classmates and peers, and be sure to adequately prepare yourself for any and all challenges that may arise.
• If your parents, siblings, or friends have attended college, they can offer priceless advice and guidance on what to expect and what not to expect. While college life can be extremely demanding, there is no ready to maintain an all work and no play attitude. You can easily manage a great CGPA as well as indulge in other recreational activities.