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Research Colleges Based on Needs

8th Grade Academic

Before researching schools, think about the type of college / university that would make you happy.  Being successful at college requires that you like the atmosphere of that school and can live there for four years.  Choosing a school based on what other people want may not make you happy.  Your ideas may change as you get older and closer to attending college, but to start this process consider the following:

  • Where regionally in the country you would like to be?
  • Would you rather be close to home or further away?
  • Would you like the atmosphere of a big university or smaller one?
  • ¬†What kind of setting would you enjoy: rural, suburban or urban?
  • Do you want a university that is weighted heavily academically, one that is more socially focused, or one that emphasizes cultural experiences, etc?
  • What is your style? You will want to fit in and feel comfortable with the other students so it will be important to know yourself and which schools have students similar to you.
  • Are you interested in a public or private schools?
  • What types of majors would you be interested in studying?
  • For athletics, in what division do you hope to participate and how much time are you willing to allot to swimming per week in practice and travel?

Based on your answers to the questions above; make a broad list of the colleges / universities that you may be interested in attending to encompass all majors that you may be interested in right now.  It will be trimmed down later.  The more information you gather and options you have early, the more options you will be left with when your list starts to trim down.  Your list should include dream and safer schools both academically and athletically.

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