To my fellow students who are searching for colleges or just trying to figure out plans for the future, I have some advice that has been very helpful to me during the stressful time we like to call senior year.
First off, don’t succumb to senioritis, no matter how bad you want to! I’ve seen so many people ruin the opportunity to get into their school of choice or for scholarships that are so far and few between.
Your last year of high school is also your last chance to earn AP and IB credits (which can save you a ton of money in the long run) and to prove yourself as an overall good student. Don’t let it be the year you failed out of a class for the first time or turned in all of your homework late.
Instead, turn it into the year that you chose to improve yourself and exceeded even your own expectations. Make it into a year that you can be proud of and show off on applications.Get an early start
Second, I recommend that you begin your college or military exploration as early as you possibly can. Finding the right place and fit can be much more difficult than people make it out to be, especially when it comes to college propaganda.
Over your senior year you’ll be receiving many pamphlets that all say, “Come to our college, we’re the best and are perfect for you!” All of this mail will also be littered with beautiful pictures of far-away campuses, and they will all try to paint a fairy-tale portrait of their college.
However, many people base their decision solely off of mail and end up regretting it for several years. Don’t let these flyers determine your decision; go to the places you’re interested in and spend some time there. It’s the only way you’ll know if that place is truly right for you.Ask questions
Lastly, don’t ever be afraid to ask questions, whether it be at a college, in your classroom, to a friend, or at home. If you are unsure about anything or are curious about possible decisions that you’ll be making, then ask as many questions as you can.
I can promise from experience that being curious is the key to getting yourself noticed in a college and can actually become quite beneficial. Because I met so many faculty and students as I explored Michigan State University, many of them already know me by name and several have gone out of their way to make sure that I have extra information and to tell me about activities they think I may be interested in.
Your future is entirely up to you -- it is the decisions and preparations you make that will determine how successful and prosperous your outcomes will be. As for now, live in the moment and enjoy the easy high school life while you can. Begin preparing yourself for the transition ahead and make the choices that feel right to you and will lead you to happiness.