With high school graduations drawing near it is imperative that, as a parent, your child is prepared for college. There are too many students who do not have the right information they need for their next step and that causes them to fall through the cracks. College-bound students should start their college preparation while still in high school.
There are many things that go into preparing for college such as exploring colleges, course selections, tuition and financial aid, admissions, and standardized tests. Your child has many people to look to for advice about college but you must know how to help them bring all the information together. To help keep you organized, I have created a list of what you should keep in mind when preparing your bundle of joy for college.
COLLEGE PREPARATION CHECKLIST:
1. Exploring Colleges: Finding and picking the right college for your student is probably one of the most difficult things to do throughout this whole process. Parents want the best for their child and a lot of college campuses falsely advertise. Therefore do your research on the colleges you have in mind and be sure you visit each campus you are highly interested in. Keep in mind that you are looking for a college that offers the best education not necessarily location. Going to a college that is in a nice neighborhood is great, but don’t let that be your only driving force.
2. Tuition and financial aid: Your child’s funding for college is by far the most important part. If you do not have the money or options for paying for college, that eliminates your child’s opportunity of going! Many people are discouraged from even applying to a college because they know they don’t have the money for it. There are so many other options for paying for tuition that people fail to realize other than paying straight out of pocket. The government gives out billions of dollars in financial aid to students all over America to help pay for college. You also have the option of using student loans and grants to help with funding as well.
3. Admissions: Making sure that you fit the requirements for a certain college’s criteria is another thing of importance. If you have a GPA of 2.0 and no extracurricular activities or poor SAT scores, then it will be harder for you to apply to an Ivy League school. Do your research on each college of interest and make sure you look for their admissions requirements before you decide on applying there. I do encourage that you still apply to your dream school even if you don’t have the highest GPA. Some colleges look for other things on your application that make up for that.
4. Standardized Tests: Every high school student should take the SATs and or ACT and aim to get a high score. I advise that you study long and hard for this test and do your best. The majority of colleges ask that you send in your scores to them when applying. This test score can also tell you if you are ready for college or not.
I hope that this has helped you in preparing your child for their next chapter.
Written By: Erique Watson