I was one of those weird kids whose since 7th grade was in love with the idea of college. I don’t know if it just comes along with the “get me out of this town I want to do something bigger” mindset, but I can’t remember a time when I was actively looking at colleges. Now I don’t recommend starting to look at colleges in 7th grade, but I do think you should start early. Now, obviously, I am not a guidance counselor, but I just telling you what I have done and what I think helped me. I started seriously looking at colleges freshman year. Now, so so so many things have changed since then that many of the colleges I was looking at then aren’t even a possibility now, but it got my foot in the door. However, there were steps I took freshman year that really, truly helped and I think will help you too.
College Prowler// College Prowler aka Niche was and continues to be my life line. You can create a profile with your intended major, GPA and test scores, then they will recommend schools that they think you would like. Yo can also set it to where schools are view your profile and say if they are interested in you. However, I use it most to search any school I am interested in. When you search a school everything from tuition to acceptance rate to an overall experience score pops up. You can click more information to get super detailed information about the school which is extremely helpful.
Make a List// Make a list of exactly what you want in a college and don’t stray from it. You need to decide where you are comfortable going to college. I knew that for me, while I hope to go out of state, I really don’t want to leave the South for college. Other factors like greek life, sports and the local area should also be on your list. You also need to sit down and talk to your parents are tuition. It is no fun but it has to happen to really put guidelines on where you can look at going.
Get Mail// If you are even remotely interested in any school go to there website and ask to receive more information. You will get put on their mailing list and will start to receive information that can really help you decide if that school is the right choice for you or not. I have a huge basket sitting in my room overflowing with college info I have received in the past two and a half years. Most of those schools I wouldn’t even think about going to now, but getting that information really helped me narrow down my choices.