Higher education begins with choosing a college
Heading off to college is a rite of passage for many young people. For many entry-level professional positions in today's work landscape, a college degree is considered the minimum educational requirement, and a college education will challenge you, help you find yourself and give you a clearer sense of direction in life.
More and more adults are also heading back to college and university to improve their academic credentials. Today, it's possible to earn an online college degree without giving up your day job — something that's very appealing to established professionals and people with full-time jobs or family commitments that make attending traditional classes an inconvenience.
Choosing a College
There are many factors to consider when it comes to choosing a college. First, consider the size of the school you want to go to — colleges with smaller student bodies have more intimate class sizes, which can make learning a more interactive and rewarding experience. However, larger colleges tend to have more resources and choices available to students.
Financial considerations are a major factor. Choosing a college closer to home makes sense if room and board is not part of your budget. Public schools tend to have lower tuition costs than private ones, but the quality and reputation of the school is also very important. As a general rule, you should go to the best college you can afford to attend.
Also, consider the facilities the college offers. This is particularly important if you want to pursue science-related majors like chemistry degrees or biology degrees for which lab access and equipment will be important. Take a tour of any campus you're considering before you make a final choice.
A distance learning college is an excellent alternative if you find attending a traditional institution cost- or time-prohibitive. Online college courses have come a long way, and many campus-based colleges are now offering distance learning alternatives to traditional programs.
Selecting a Major
If you don't already know what you want to study in college, don't worry. Many schools let you start off in general programs that allow you to explore various subjects. When you find one you like, dive in and declare it your major.
It's most important to study something you love in college, or to take a course that will lead you to the type of job you want to have. Education will open a lot of doors for you, so have fun and study hard!