Still Figuring Out What School to Apply To?

October 12, 2016

IT’S ALREADY OCTOBER. I know, where on earth did time go, right?! You’ve likely already been in school for over a month, and let’s face it, we know it’s kicking you to the curb. Assignments on top of assignments; club meetings after meetings; and if it’s at all possible, you’re still trying to get in your 8 hours a night.

Now, if you’re a Freshman, Sophomore, or Junior you’ve got it pretty laid back. However, if you’re a senior planning on applying to college this year, you should have already been working on your applications!

Pause for moment of panic for those reading who have still not even decided what school they want to attend.

If you haven’t begun applying (or your college search), it’s still not too late. While you might miss out on early action and early decision deadlines, regular decision applications usually aren’t due until December or even January! If you are still looking for schools to potentially apply to and attend, follow these steps:

1. Ask yourself, what is it in college that I really want to experience - both academically and personally?

College is about what you make of it. However, some schools are known over others for certain areas. For example, if you are interested in engineering, a large research school might be more appealing to you than a smaller one. Contrary, if you like the small school setting, small liberal arts colleges are the way to go.

2. Do you want to stay home or go away?

This one question can help you eliminate a bunch of potential schools from your list. If you are willing and wanting to go to college away from home, narrow your list to include schools that reflect those locations of choice. If, on the other hand, you want to stay near home, check out your state schools.

3. What is your estimated cost?

The answer to this question is and can be highly varied, so it’s important that you don’t use this question as your only means of deciding where to attend. While looking at potential schools to apply to, you probably see large tuition numbers ranging from $10,000 to even $50,000. While these costs are obviously high, don’t select a school based on estimated costs for now. The reason being is that in the case you get accepted to a school with a large estimated cost of of attendance, it’s likely that they offer generous financial aid packages making it very affordable to attend.

Instead, check out the financial aid packages that are generally offered to students and see if they are within reason of your family’s budget.

While these questions are just to get you started, keep digging around to find the school perfect for you! Wherever you apply to, make sure that it’s a school you can see yourself for the next four year! Get to it, folks - applications close soon!

About The Author

The College Essayist, Guest Blogger
The College Essayist, Guest Blogger

We’re The College Essayist, a free student-run global college access organization on a mission to democratize access to higher education. We’re a group of high school students and undergraduates who are here to help you rock high school, annihilate college admissions, and conquer the college years and beyond through online resources, services, and informative (read: informal, awesome, and rad) articles. Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, or tumble on over with us on Tumblr.




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extreana
Tufts ‘18


Accepted to CMU, BC, Tufts, Northeastern

Just a rising sophomore trying to help my peers find a school that fits them best! Ask me about engineering, essays, or life in general.
dorszy
MIT ‘20


Accepted to MIT, Princeton, Duke, Stanford, UGA, GA Tech, UNC

I'm a current sophomore at MIT who loves all sorts of things: from engineering and biology to music and dance.
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MIT ‘20


Accepted to MIT, UMich, Rutgers, Cornell, Rice, JHU

computer science / design / music / film
griffindaly
Tulane ‘20


Accepted to Tulane, UC Berkeley, Cincinnati, UPenn

Hi y'all! I'm an incoming freshmen at Tulane University in New Orleans, where I'll be studying Architecture, with a coordinate major in International Development and a minor in Urban Studies. Hope I can help with this #difficult process!

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