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College

  • Body Image, College, GirlSpring.com, School

    Three Rules for the New School Year

    Three Rules for the New School Year

    guest post by Martha Underwood, CEO of Executive Estrogen

    This year, how will you navigate making new friends, encountering new teachers, growing physically and emotionally all while staying cool. It can seem overwhelming but it doesn’t have to be. You are unique and beautiful in your own right. Here are a few tips to navigating the school year.

    Get a Mentor & Meet a New Friend

    Approach new teachers and new people with the intention to learn about them and yourself. Find a good teacher that can serve as a mentor to you. Also, you may be able to use them as a confidant or tutor should you need one. Be open to meeting a new friend and seek out friends that may differ from you, doing so will help expand your perspective of people and  in the end you may find that you are more alike than you may have thought.

     

    Embrace Physical Change and Growth

    Your body and emotions will change. It’s natural. I was so skinny, I used to get teased that I walked on stilts. Instead of staying indoors looking at all the photoshopped bodies in magazines, I made it a point to ride my bike and enjoy the outdoors. Being outside reminded me that everything is always evolving and my body and emotions weren’t any different. So instead of staring at Instagram all day,  go for a walk.  Enjoy the outdoors, it offers the opportunity to immerse yourself in a new environment which will help balance all of the physical and emotional ups and downs you will experience.

     

    Be You

     

    Most importantly, be you! Even if you feel like you look silly doing the floss, do it anyway. Even if you feel like people will pick at you because you still love Harry Potter, love it anyway. Someone will always have an opinion about how you look, what you say or how you dress, in the end the only thing that matters the most is how you feel about it. Take note of how you feel when you are experiencing new people and new things. If it makes you happy, keep doing them, if it makes you uncomfortable or sad, remove it from your life.

    Here’s to an awesome 2018-2019 school year!

    Keep Shining,

    Martha

  • Articles, College, Confidence, Money, School, Writing

    How to Write College Essays

    How to Write College Essays

    guest post by Rick Wedell, RFG Chief Investment Officer

     

    College application deadlines are approaching, and with that there comes the stress of the application process. Some schools do not ask for essays, while others may ask you for several different pieces of writing. With that in mind, we thought we would share with you a good approach to writing college essays beyond the simple “make sure you proof- read carefully”.1

     

     

    Step 1: The Personal Narrative

    Ideally, a college application should tell a compelling story about who you are, why you want to go to school in general, and why this institution in particular. We’ll call this your personal narrative – the twenty second elevator speech youwould give to the admissions of cer if you were fortunate enough to be able to trap them in an enclosed space for thatlength of time.

    This is a story that you should construct on paper prior to even looking at the application, and it’s crucial that it weaves itself together into a compelling and coherent story line. Consider two narratives –

    1. I’m Rick, I’m a natural leader, I ran track and focused on Model UN in High School, I want to go to college so that I can become a marine biologist, and I’m interested in the University of Miami because of your amazing overseas exchange student program
    2. I’m Samantha, I’m inquisitive, I was active in the debate team and student government in High School, I’m looking to go to college so that I can one day go to law school, and I’m interested in the University of Virginia because of your excellent pre-law curriculum track 2

    To a college admissions counselor, Rick sounds like he has no sense of what he is doing with his life, while Samantha sounds like she has been organized around a single purpose since the day she could walk. Each aspect of her narrative is complementary and additive to the others, and as a result, Samantha is a far more compelling candidate. More importantly, her story is a heck of a lot more memorable because it all hangs together – inquisitive, debate, law school, pre-law.

    As a guideline, your narrative should include two to four characteristics that describe who you are (or who you want the admissions department to think of you as). These can be interests, achievements, activities, or descriptors.
    The most important thing about your narrative is that it needs to be believable! If you say you want to help impoverished children, then you had better be able to point to something concrete that demonstrates this desire.

    That said, saying it needs to be believable is not the same thing as saying that it needs to be 100% accurate, particularly when you discuss why you want to go to college and why this school in particular. In your heart of hearts, you may want go to the University of Wherever because that’s where your friends are going, or because you love their sports teams, or because your parents went to their arch-rival and you are trying to rebel. These are all valid reasons for going to the school and horrible reasons to put on your application. You shouldn’t lie about grades, an activity, a leadership role or accolade or anything like that, however stretching the possible on your motivations or what attracts you to the school is fair game so long as it is believable. In our examples above, Rick could make his story more compelling if he tied his experience in Model UN to an interest in a government degree and Miami’s fantastic public policy program. He can always switch to marine biology once he enrolls.3

    So now we’ve got our personal narrative, which is a well-constructed, believable story about who you are, why you want to go to college, and why you want to go to this college in particular. The next step is to actually look at the application itself.

     

    Step 2 – The Grid

    Every college application is different. Some applications ask for a single essay, others ask for multiple short answers, others ask for multiple essays, and some ask for no written samples at all. If the application asks for a single essay – no problem – just take your personal narrative and start writing. If multiple written responses are required, that’s when we come to the concept of the grid.

    The grid is pretty simple – put your narrative in boxes across the top row and the list of writing requirements down the page. At the far right should be a column called “topic”. To illustrate, we’ll use Samantha’s narrative and some essay questions I made up:

    Inquisitive

    Debate

    Student Gov.

    Law School

    Pre-law track

    Topic

    Talk about a time you struggled?

    What are you most proud of?

    Why would our campus be a better place with you on it?

    Now, all we need to do is decide which situations or experiences we are going to address in each essay, making
    sure that we touch on all of the elements of our narrative at least once in the entire application. We don’t want every response to check every box, but we do want to check 2 or 3 boxes with each answer and make sure that nothing in ourpersonal narrative gets left out when the admissions of cer nishes reading the application as a whole.

    page2image47944page2image48104

    What the grid forces you to do is focus your writing on your message and avoid the cardinal sin of application writing – DO NOT simply answer the questions in a laundry list fashion. Samantha may be very proud of the time she won the spelling bee in Junior High. If the application asks what she’s proud of, she might be tempted to write about it. After all, who wouldn’t be proud of that? At the same time, that response is off message. It’s impressive, and it might make for a good essay topic for some applicants, but it doesn’t really fit into Samantha’s story. She certainly should list that achievement when asked about extra curriculars, awards, and accolades, but she shouldn’t spend essay time writing about it. Instead, she should pick an experience or situation to write about that helps to tell her story.

    Keep in mind that the questions are just prompts to get you talking about yourself, and no admissions officer is going to penalize you for being a little off topic with your answers so long as you make an effort to frame it within the question. The best overall candidates get into school, not the people who have the best examples to fit into the application questions.

    If Samantha wants to talk about a debate tournament she won for the “struggled” question, she can spend a little time describing the struggle she had with preparation for the tournament as she crafts the response. If she’d rather talk about the tournament in the next question, then she can be “most proud of” the fact that she worked together with her team and coaches to get to the victory. You get the idea.

    When Sam is finished with her grid, it might look something like this:

    Inquisitive

    Debate

    Student Gov.

    Law School

    Pre-law track

    Topic

    Talk about a time you struggled?

    XXX

    XXX

    Debate Win

    What are you most proud of?

    XXX

    XXX

    Class Senator

    Why would our campus be a better place with you on it?

    XXX

    XXX

    XXX

    Legal Intern

    She’s chosen topics to write about for each of these three essays that highlight the qualities checked on the grid. Once again, she’s not talking about everything in every response, but when she’s finished her narrative should flow through the application. Now that she has her topics, it’s off to write!

     

    Step 3 – The Writing

    Steps 1 and 2 are about figuring out what to write about for each question, and now we get to the point of actually putting words on paper. A couple of tips:

    • Make every word count. You have a limited number of words, and most of us are prolific with our prose. You want to cram as much content into as few words as possible. Start by writing with no filter, and then go back and delete / rephrase until you hit the target word count. Intro phrases like “for example” and “in other words” are great candidates to slash and burn.
    • Show, don’t tell. Wherever possible, use examples / stories / anecdotes (like the Samantha and Rick storylines above) to illustrate your points versus just stating them – it makes the work more engaging to the reader.
    • Customize your answers for each school. You may be tempted to copy essays from one application to the
      next. Resist the temptation unless the questions are the same. You can talk about the same situations on every application by reframing the experience (e.g. Samantha’s debate tournament win), but the copy / paste function on your word processor should be avoided like the plague.
    • If a question asks you about your personality or “who you are”, be brutally honest. These questions are probing not only for who you are, but for how well you know yourself, and should be treated with an appropriate level of introspection. They aren’t necessarily asking you to talk about the time you were elected president of the student government or some other mind-blowing achievement or skill. You can still fit these into the grid, but be careful – you want these responses to show that you are aware of your weaknesses as well as your strengths.4 Be honest with yourself. A good rule of thumb is that you will know that this type of essay is ready to submit when you hesitate to print a copy for fear that one of your friends might someday find it.
    • Find someone you trust to edit and proofread. You do not need 50 different editors, because they will give you conflicting advice. Find 1 or 2 people who will read all of the essays together and make sure that they present a compelling storyline, and who are willing to suggest changes to things that are a little off – an editor is worthless if they simply tell you the essays look great.

    Step 4 – The Recommendations

    You might think that we are all done once we’ve done the writing, but we still have letters of recommendation to consider! After all, we did all the work to come up with our personal narrative, and there is no reason not to share that with whoever is writing your letters of recommendation.

    page4image33496

    Indeed, you should probably think about your personal narrative when you think about WHO you ask. Ideally, we want the recommender to discuss something additive to your story, but not repetitive. If Samantha has her softball coach write a letter, it’s nice, but it doesn’t really build her story. Her Social Studies teacher might be a better option, as that is consistent with and adds to Samantha’s narrative. Having her Debate coach write the letter would be more in the repetitive camp.

    Once you’ve identified who you want to write the letter, you should ask them. Give them an out, so that if they do not want to write the letter they have a pre-built excuse. Something like “Mr. Johnson, I’m applying to the University of Wherever, and I was wondering if you have the time to write a good letter of recommendation for me?” Asking if they have the time gives them an out without hurting your feelings – you don’t want someone writing a rec who doesn’t want to do it.

    If they agree – great! Most people who write letters of recommendation want to see you succeed – they wouldn’t write it if they didn’t care. By telling your recommender how you are positioning your application, you let them know what
    to highlight in their letter. At the very least, it helps ensure that they won’t directly contradict you! Share your personal narrative with them, and if you feel comfortable enough, suggest what you think they might be able to add to the conversation.

    Sam might say: “Mr. Johnson, thank you for agreeing to write a recommendation for me. Elsewhere in my application, I’ve talked about how I’m inquisitive, loved student government and debate, and am interested in law as a career. I was hoping that you might be able to highlight my work in your class for the admissions office?” This is innocuous enough to not be pushy, but gives the letter writer enough information to compliment her story.5

    Last, but not least –

    I hope that this has been helpful as you approach your college applications. While the process may seem daunting, in a sense you are really just being asked to tell a couple of stories about yourself. These stories should be chosen and written carefully so that they are both interesting and present the best picture possible, but try to approach the process with a sense of humor. After all, no one is more qualified or better positioned to write about your life than you are.

    Good luck!

    page5image28448

    1 Which you should 100% do.
    2 The “why this particular school” portion requires you to do some homework on that school and what they offer you in that particular field. Spend the time and craft a custom answer – it shows you aren’t cutting and pasting.
    3 As an aside, MOST schools want a nice mix of math geeks, jocks, and poets. For schools that have a particularly dominant bent towards one type of major, saying you are interested in something OTHER than that might be helpful (so long as you can make it believable). Case in point – I applied under the guise of pursuing an engineering degree at a school more known for finance, then switched once I got there.
    4 I’m not talking about weaknesses like “I like to steal things” or “I have a crippling addiction” which will get you kicked out of the process immediately. We all have things we are great at and places where we could improve. Show that you know about both aspects of yourself.
    5 You should send this to your recommender in an email, or otherwise write it down so that they can refer to it later – most letter writers are doing a lot of them this time of year, and simply saying it risks they will forget it.
    Investment advice offered through RFG Advisory Group, LLC, a Registered Investment Advisor.
  • Articles, College, School, Sports, TRENDING

    Groundbreaking female football player Becca Longo’s advice to young girls: ‘Don’t listen to all the negativity’

    Becca Longo, 18, is believed to have become the first female in history to earn a football scholarship with a top-tier college team when she signed a letter of intent Wednesday with Adams State University.

    Longo, a high school senior from Arizona, said she would tell young girls who have big dreams like her to “do what you love” and ignore the negativity.

    “If they want to play football, go out and play football. If they want to play hockey, they can go out and play hockey,” Longo said today on “Good Morning America.” “Just don’t listen to all the negativity because you’re going to get a lot of it.”

    “Just go do what you love,” she said.

    Longo was introduced at a signing ceremony Wednesday at Basha High School in Chandler, Arizona, as the first woman to sign a letter of intent to play football at a Division II level college or higher, according to ESPN.

    Longo, who will also play basketball at Adams State, said she was as surprised as anyone.

    “I didn’t believe that it was true,” she said. “I just remember sitting there and Coach [Gerald] Todd saying that I was the first girl to ever do that. … I was so blown away.”

    Making Longo’s rise to the ranks of college football even more improbable is that she only played football for two seasons in high school.

    “I started playing my sophomore year and then I transferred schools so I had to sit out my junior year and I didn’t get to play until my senior year,” Longo said. “I didn’t really expect to play after high school until sort of the middle of my senior season, which is kind of late.”

    Longo also overcame injuries and defied doctors’ expectations in her rise to become a college athlete.

    “The doctors told me that I couldn’t play sports ever again and I just kind of like used that as motivation to prove them wrong,” she said. “I love both of my sports too much to just give up and I’ve spent so much time and money and effort just to just let it all go.”

  • Articles, College, School

    Sparkling Dresses but Inside We’re Messes: How an Aesthetic Sport Affected my Relationship with Food

    I had never worried about my weight before, nor did I have reason to. I was confident in my thin but strong body and didn’t obsess over every bite I ate. If a sweet dessert or greasy pizza crossed my path, I was more than likely to enjoy it, but since I never intentionally denied myself a treat, I rarely made myself sick from overindulging. Besides, I was a figure skater. I trained 2 to 3 hours every day, burning hundreds of calories per hour. If you’ve ever watched figure skating, you know just how much of a role aesthetics plays in the sport. Girls must be extremely lean to successfully launch themselves into the air and complete nearly three rotations before landing on one foot. I was lean, and I was relatively successful at completing said airborne rotations. But that wasn’t enough.

    When I was fourteen, my coach started trying to get me to eat healthier; encouraging me to try vegetables and cut down on the frappuccinos. That would have been fine, but I’m not one to take things slightly, and at that moment being the best at my sport was the essence of my existence. So, if dieting was going to help me reach that goal, then I would kiss my edible entertainment goodbye. I held my resolution solid for a month until I went to IHOP to treat myself. That morning I consumed an incredible 7 pancakes as the waiter stared in awe at the hundred-pound girl scarfing down half her weight in breakfast foods.

    Once I got that taste of indulgence it was hard to go back to restriction, and I ended up gaining back all the weight I had lost, plus some. I had let go of the reins and was binging nightly on all the foods I had previously forbidden myself. For the first time in my life, my mom warned me I would get fat if I kept eating the way I was. This was a foreign, ill-received feeling, and although I had never been an emotional eater before, food became my solace. The cycle continued; I would eat restrictively for a week or two, binge to the point of nausea, feel extremely guilty, and repeat! I was extremely dissatisfied, not just with my body, which I had newly discovered had a million flaws, but also with my inability to stick to my resolutions. The binging didn’t lessen until I learned to be more forgiving of myself, and 2 years later, although I’m still struggling to break away from ‘yo-yo dieting’, I can say it’s been nearly 6 months since I had a sickening binge episode and my self-confidence is better than it’s been since middle school. I don’t blame skating, but in a subjective sport, girls like myself are pressured to slim down at a young age, which, without proper guidance, can lead to distressing relationships with food that have the potential to last a lifetime.

  • Articles, College, TRENDING, Writing

    Two Admissions Essay Tips From Someone Who Got Into Every Ivy League School

    Getting accepted into an Ivy League University is a big accomplishment for most folks. Kwasi Enin got accepted into all eight schools, so if there’s somebody who knows a thing or two about writing a good admissions essay, it’s him.

    Yes, it’s important to proofread your essays and make plenty of edits, but there’s more to a winning essay than grammar. Here’s what Enin recommended to high school students in a recent Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Reddit:

    1. Get help from an English teacher: Get started early!

    Like, the summer before your senior year if possible. That way you can have your English teacher look over it and work with you throughout the year to perfect it. Plus, when application time comes along, you’ll be more than prepared.

    2. Make your essay scream “This is who I am!”:

    You want your essay to be compelling and stand out from the others, but you also want it to reflect who you really are. Enin suggests you take a small idea you’ve had, or an event in your life, then detail its significance to you. By the end of your essay, whoever reviews it should have a good image of you in their mind.

    It’s also a good idea to avoid cliches, says Enin. Remember, these essays are a chance for you to showcase who you are and what makes you special. Think about what makes you unique as a student and as a person, then put it on the page. You can read the entire AMA at the link below.

    Reddit via Business Insider via Lifehacker

    Click Here for the original Article

  • College, Tips

    Student Advice on Freshman Year

    Gain helpful student advice on freshman year from students nationwide, who share their personal experiences.

    College life is looming. Wouldn’t it be nice to get some pointers on making the most of college?

    Fastweb polled students across the country for their top tips for a successful freshman year in college.

    What tips do students across the nation have for students about to go to college? Find out below!

    Getting Settled

    “Talk to your roommate before you get to school and decide who’s bringing what (you don’t need two stereos…).”
    Tina, Dartmouth College

    “Even if you really miss your home or your parents want you to come back, don’t do it until it has been at least a month since you were in college. The people who leave before then never feel like they have a foothold on college life, and end up leaving.”
    Kristen, Cal Poly

    “Splurge on organizing materials—for your dorm, for your backpack, for all your papers. This is the most important thing you can do in order to preserve sanity as you find your free time slowly slipping away.”
    Andrea, Harold Washington City College

    “Make friends with an older student who has already been through freshman year and can help make your first year easier.”
    David, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

    Classwork/Academics

    “Don’t sweat the grades. If you put in an honest, diligent effort and are truly engaged in your work, then you’ll be fine. If studying a certain subject is like pulling teeth or is the last thing you want to do, then something’s wrong. If this subject is your major, then something is very wrong.”
    Seth, Brown University

    “Go to class—it is SO tempting to miss class and get another student’s notes, but you’ll definitely miss out.”
    David

    “Get to know your professors. It’s not high school anymore. Your classes can be 300+ and your professors will not come to you; you must come to them. Get to know them because they are your most valuable resources for academics and for extracurricular professional opportunities.”
    Matt, Stanford University

    “Don’t depend on the teacher to remind you about due dates.”
    Elizabeth, Sam Houston State University

    “Follow of the honor code—cheating is not worth it!”
    David

    “Take different classes. Even if you know what you want to major in, most students end up changing their major sometime during their college careers. Learn new things and open yourself up to a whole new future.”
    Andy, Gordon College

    “Don’t be afraid to ask questions … especially in class or afterwards. No college professor is going to turn you away. He/she may not have the time to lead you through the problem, but they can, and most of the time will, lead you in the right direction.”
    Andy

    “Don’t be afraid to take challenging, upper level courses. What’s important is one-on-one contact with a teacher and highly motivated students, something you’ll only get in smaller classes. This means getting over the fear of looking ignorant and realizing that everyone’s a novice at some point.”
    Seth

    Extracurriculars

    “Become involved in several community service activities and extra-curricular activities/clubs so you can become an integral part in the campus.”
    David

    “Don’t sacrifice quality for quantity in terms of what you get involved in. You’ll always want to do more than what you have time for, so limit your commitments to what you can really get deeply engaged in.”
    Seth

    “Keep up a hobby—dance class, computer games, pottery. Whatever outlet you have for creative energy or frustration, keep it up during your college experience.”
    Andrea

    “Learn to manage your time. Even if you’re the type that doesn’t do a bit of studying until 20 minutes before an exam, you need to budget your time at college between classes, activities and socializing. If you spend all your time at the library, you won’t appreciate college very much; but the same goes for the scenario in which you spend your whole college career hanging over the balcony of a house with Greek letters painted on the side.”
    Terri, College of William and Mary

    “Go to every job fair, information session and industry banquet. Most of the time, that is how you get jobs before and after college.”
    Kristen

    Dorm or Apartment Life

    “Make friends with your residential assistant. They can be really helpful and you never know when you will need them (e.g., for roommate problems, advice on picking classes, etc.).”
    Tina

    “Learn to say “No.” Mom and Dad are miles away now, and there’s no one to stand up for you but you. If you roommate constantly takes your favorite clothes without asking or if the girl down the hall always disturbs your studies with her annoying loud conversations, speak up! You have your rights.”
    Terri

    “Don’t try to be your roommate’s best friend! All you need to get along is to respect them and make sure they respect your opinions and needs and be willing to stand up for yourself.”
    David

    “If you have a problem with your roommate, address it immediately or it will grow into a bigger situation than is needed.”
    Elizabeth

    “Make sure you and your roommate talk early on about what you both expect— i.e. regarding phone time, messages, borrowing stuff, guests, cleaning, etc.”
    Tina

    “Don’t blast your music. You’ll be glad you were polite when the girl in the room next door starts blasting her favorite techno remix at 10:30 the night before you have a test and you can ask her to turn down her tunes without being “hypocrite of the week” in your hall.”
    Terri

    Health and Well-Being

    “Eat!!! This isn’t really important to a lot of people, but so many of my friends have went off to school and became so absorbed in partying and/or saving money that they didn’t get the nourishment and quality of food they got at home. Don’t get out of shape … try to eat just like you did at home.”
    Andy

    “Exercise! The college workload can hit you like a ton of bricks, pushing your stress level through the roof. Take some time each day to exercise; it will help you relieve the stress and fight the infamous ‘freshman 15.’”
    Matt

    “Get plenty of sleep. Whether you traveled 1000 miles to a different state, or just to the other side of the city, this is a big change you’re making in your life. Take care of yourself and get enough sleep so you’ll be prepared to deal with all the pressures and stressful situations.”
    Andrea

    “Maintain some private time and space. Sure, you’re sociable, but being around people your own age all day, every day, can be really taxing on the nerves. Find a secluded spot on campus where you can go to relax and spend some time there each week, pondering the meaning of life and what not.”
    Terri

    “Besides the studying and working all the time, make time for yourself. It’s the best way to experience college and also the best way to be happy when you have to write that paper or study. A balanced life is a more healthy one, and leads to better grades in the end.”
    Andy

    Money

    “Budget, budget, budget—don’t just plan to! Keep track of where your money is going—save receipts, balance your checkbook. Don’t let poverty sneak up on you!”
    Andrea

    “Learn not to want what you don’t need. Protect yourself by realizing that you don’t need at least 99 out of 100 things people want to sell you. If you get into a habit of buying things that you don’t need (i.e., things that don’t noticeably help facilitate your health and wellbeing), you’ll send your family to the poorhouse right quick.”
    Seth

    “Get phonecards. They are much cheaper and usually the college phone prices are really high.”
    Tina

    “Shop around for books. The sooner you get into this habit, the better you will feel about the world in general. Check online sources. They offer lots of hard-to-find titles and may sell standard texts at much more reasonable prices than what you will see at the campus bookstore.”
    Andrea

    Social Life

    “Don’t be a stranger. Start spontaneous conversations with people—it’s much easier on a college campus than anywhere else. Always remember that you have nothing to lose.”
    Seth

    “Don’t party too hard. This is one of the main reasons most kids don’t succeed their first few years in school. It’s expected that you’re going to go out and try new things, but don’t overdo it.”
    Andy

    “Don’t forget the contacts and friends you had in high school; they can be there for you more than you will ever know.”
    Kristen

    “Support the efforts of your friends. See their plays. Go to their exhibitions. This’ll encourage them to do the same for you, and before you know it, you’ll build a real, meaningful social and intellectual community.”
    Seth

    “Experience everything you can. There are all kinds of new people at school. This may be your time to break free and find out what you’re all about. Meet new people and hang out with different groups.”
    Andy

     

    Article From: Fastweb

  • College, Tips

    Top 15 Mistakes to Avoid in Choosing a College

    Afraid of choosing the wrong college? Avoid these 15 common blunders students often make in considers their college options.

    Choosing a college is stressful and making sure you make the right decision can often feel like a daunting task. To help out with the process, here are some common mistakes to avoid along the way:

    1. Rushing the process. Finding the right college takes time and effort, not to mention research and an often lengthy application process. Waiting until the last minute or just “falling into a college” is never a good idea. It takes the most important factor out of the equation—you.

    2. Being a follower. Following a boyfriend, girlfriend, best friend to the college of their choice may seem like a good idea at the time because you want to be near them, but this is one of the most pivotal points in your life, too. You need to remember to make the best decisions for yourself and, if your relationships are strong, they will outlast time and distance anyway.

    3. The legacy lure. We’re aware the commandment states “Honor thy father and mother.” However, only considering colleges your parents, siblings or other family members went to in order to follow in their footsteps may not be in your best interest. It’s always better to explore your options and find the right fit for your personality.

    4. Rebellion. In contrast, only considering colleges your parents DON’T want you to go isn’t beneficial either. Sometimes, they have some good insight that may help you decide on what may be best for you. Don’t choose—or not choose—a college out of spite. This is sure to lead you down a path of regret. Choose a college based on what you want, not based on what someone else doesn’t.

    5. You’re a die-hard fan. We’ve all got our favorite teams, but let’s remember that just because they have a great sports team does not mean it’s the right educational fit for you. After all, you’re there to learn, not cheer them on. You can be a fan anywhere, but you can’t learn everywhere.

    6. The temptation to party. So, it’s a great party school but is it a great learning environment? While you may be itching to get out on your own and party like a rock star, that’s really not what college is about. Remember, when choosing a college that you want to choose somewhere what you can have a healthy social atmosphere but a setting that’s conducive to the real goal at hand—learning.

    7. How a student body looks. You’ve heard the student body is attractive. So what? Maybe you like this, maybe you’re worried you won’t fit in, either way, you should ignore these stereotypes because they probably are just that. Also, the attractiveness of a student body shouldn’t really make a different in your decision on where to get an education.

    8. Assuming the worst. Not applying to certain schools because you assume you won’t be accepted underrates your potential and potentially limits your future. Come on, you guys, we have reach schools for a reason. You never know what you can achieve if you don’t try, so at least make an attempt.

    9. Location, location, location. Whether you’re a homebody who wants to stay close or an escape artist who wants to get as far from home as possible, the location should be a factor in choosing a college, not the sole decision maker.

    10. Cost obsessions or carelessness. Forgetting to consider the cost or only considering the cost as a factor are two major issues to avoid. While cost is a huge hurdle, there are many other factors to consider as well and students should not be blinded by this one aspect. Reversely, students who are applying for financial aid or whose parents are paying for college should not neglect to think about cost completely, as costs can add up quite quickly.

    11. Not visiting. Experiences are relative and one person’s dream college could be another’s nightmare. This is why going by what you’ve been told is never a good idea. A person very different from you could have had a positive or negative experience that you likely would not have had. Also, only looking at the website or relying on a college’s advertising is a mistake because they tend to idealize college life and students get unrealistic expectations of what campus is like. It’s always better to visit and experience the college—or one very similar to it—for yourself.

    12. Relying on reputation. Just because it’s a “highly-ranked”, “prestigious” or a “designer” school doesn’t mean it’s the right school for you. Don’t always assume that the difficulty of getting into the school equates to the quality of education you’ll receive. Some students need smaller classes and more one-on-one interaction to thrive in a learning environment.

    13. Pushy parents. Letting your parents decide which college is right for you, or being forced by your parents to attend a certain school is not healthy. You need to think about what you want out of a college. After all, you’re the one attending the school.

    14. Having a one-track mind. Maybe you’ve wanted to go there since you were little and you’ve already decided there is only one right school for you. But not investigating all your options is a huge mistake. You can still attend you’re number one, we’re just asking you to check out the others, too. Just because you think it’s what you want doesn’t mean you can’t ask questions and, believe us, you can never ask too many!

    15. The college specializes in your current major. That’s right, we said current. Choosing a college solely because of a specific major or career path is a major (pun intended) issue because, odds are, your major will change several times. There’s nothing wrong with that, we just want you to be prepared with a school ready to accommodate all your dreams, whatever they may be.

    Article From: Fastweb