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Monday, March 6, 2017
The Importance of Courting the Right College
As this season's high school juniors slowly slide into the college application season, they may find that things are finally getting real. Having your wheels clicked into the college track is one thing. Picking a university and a major are entirely different affairs.
The majority of high school students don't have concrete long-term plans. There are exceptions, of course, and most have at least a sense of their general interests. It is okay not to know, but students shouldn't be afraid to do some exploring.
This is the time to reach out to professors. These are the people who aren't typically on the front lines of college admissions. Those jobs are reserved for the marketing department. Getting to know faculty will help students to distinguish between schools that look good and schools that are a good fit for their specific needs.
Professors are likely to be impressed by high school students who are doing their homework on the university. Email them. Ask to sit in on a class. Ask questions about course content. Tell them you're not sure what you want to do. If you reach the interview stage, you'll be able to say that you've taken the initiative to get to know a little about the school and its instructors-stuff you can't necessarily find on the brochure.
It's okay to sit in your uncertainty. Indecision need not be paralytic. College application season is intense but short. Like every transition in life, it will fortify the texture of your experience. Any good professor knows all of this. And they don't have to be your teacher to give you some really important guidance.
As a prospective student, you really have nothing to lose.
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