How To Prepare For College
Learning how to prepare for college is a process that should be well underway in the latter high school years. Even if a student is unsure whether or not he wants to attend college in the first place—never mind which major to pick—it is crucial to get all your ducks put in a row so that no doors will be shut when graduation day arrives.
Prior to getting ready to send off that stack of college applications, put together a few things:
- Skills inventory
- Information from local clubs and activities
- Focus on getting high grades. Even if a student is uncertain which field of study he may choose in college, the more competitive fields or schools require an overall high GPA. This holds true for classes that will become germane to the major but also for ancillary coursework.
- Budget for the expense. The student and his parents must decide if it is possible to afford a university, Ivy League school or community college. Remember to also factor in secondary expenses, such as housing and transportation.
- Inventory interests and strengths. A talent for art and a lesser interest in medicine do not have to necessarily translate into a fine arts degree; instead, it may lead to an education in medical illustration.
- Investigate the market. The Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes an annual guide that outlines the likely salaries that various positions earn, as well as any education required to reach these professional goals. Knowing ahead of time what it takes to make it in a field prevents the waste of time and money on a career that yields little remuneration.
- Hone the soft skills. Debating, interviewing and negotiating are part and parcel of the college experience and beyond. Work on these skills during middle school and high school to hit the ground running after graduation.
- Engage in various extracurricular activities. Universities frequently require the submission of an application letter, and learning how to prepare for college includes the know-how to feature interests and skills garnered after school. The more varied the activities, the broader the experiences from which the future college student can draw.
If the latter high school years are used wisely, finding out how to prepare for college with graduation right around the corner is no big deal.