Moving on to college is one of the most significant milestones in a person’s life. It’s when you finally decide on the path you want to take when you enter the world of the professionals. There’s still room for error – yes – but not as much when you were in high school. In college, whether that’s a local or international college in the Philippines, everything and anything you do has a direct impact on your future – your performance, attitude, and habits.
As difficult and intimidating as college is, the challenge doesn’t start on your first day as a student. It actually starts before that – during your search for the best college. There are a handful of colleges to choose from and you have to find the single best one for you. That’s a difficult task for someone in their teens, which is why we’ll offer a few tips to make the decision a little easier for you.
Figure Out What You Want
In order to really find the college that fits you best, the first thing you need to do is ask yourself what you want. Sounds a bit weird and cliché but sit down and have a long, sincere talk with yourself. What do you want out of college? Where do you want to spend the next few years of your life? What do you want to major on? What would make you happy and successful?
Some people can confidently answer these questions, but there are those that don’t have their life quite figured out yet. That’s okay, too, because college is a time where people find themselves. However, you should at least have a general sense of the things you want and don’t. There should already be a picture in your head of what the future looks like, even if a little blurry. Use whatever information you have on yourself to find the ideal college for you.
Gauge the Academic Quality
You can gauge a college’s academic quality based on the students they produce, their graduation rates, and passing rates on nationwide board exams. Incoming college students in the Philippines almost always prefer the big 4, but try to look past those universities and colleges. There are more out there who can produce the same results, if not better.
Additionally, while it’s ideal to enter a college that has great academic quality, your performance and grade will still depend on your skills and abilities – on your efforts and dedication to your studies, so don’t put all your money on it. Sometimes it’s not the school that helps bring honor to the students but the other way around.
Consider Environment and Location
The college’s environment is one of the things that people overlook, and they don’t realize the importance until after they’ve entered. It can actually make or break your stay in college, so make sure to take note of the environment of each college you visit.
Location is also important especially in the Philippines where people struggle daily with traffic. You certainly don’t want to spend all your time stuck on the road. If the one you want is located far from home, then look for alternative accommodations like apartments, condominiums or dormitories.
Look at Your Family’s Finances
Cost is commonly the first thing people look at when they’re looking to enter college. If the cost of going to a certain college is way beyond their means, they immediately cross it off the list. Although smart and practical, try not to settle this so quickly, especially if it’s a college you think is perfect for you.
There are several organizations and government agencies out there offering scholarships for students in need of financial assistance. They won’t only cover your college expenses, but they may even hand out stipends or allowances depending on your performance.
Alternatively, if you can’t find any financial help, then don’t feel so bad about going to your second or third choices. They may not be what you really want, but at the very least you and your family won’t be drowning in debt.
Finding the best college is going to be one of the hardest things you need to do in your life, but these tips should make it somewhat easier. All you need to remember is that you need to pick a college that can offer what you want, help you achieve your dreams, is within your financial means, and has an environment that you can thrive in.
It can be a name-brand college or an international college in the Philippines. What matters most is that you personally made the decision using every piece of information available!