As a senior in high school, every time I hear the word “college,” an endless list of worries and anxieties runs through my brain like the final credits to an overstaffed movie. From those worries and anxieties, new and hectic thoughts branch off into multiple categories of stress, all focused around their exact origin, college.
When I was young the idea of college was all about having fun and being independent, but here lately, the reality has become much more clear: College will either make you or break you, and with the right preparations and academic planning, it can pave your way to a rewarding and successful life.
Okay, so what now? Well, I could list a number of incredibly boring tips and long complicated advice that most of you have been aware of since square one of your college-planning adventure (yeah, right). But fortunately for you, there is one important aspect of college preparation that I mainly want to focus on: making smart choices with whatever substantial resources you may have.
My high school journey happens to be coming to an end, and one thing I definitely wish I would have had a better outlook on was all the easy assistance that has been offered since the very beginning of my college search. Now, fortunately for myself, I will be attending a college that is close to home and because of that I have decided to continue living at home, avoiding a bunch of unneeded student loans and costs. I would consider that to be a smart choice with a substantial resource.
You might be planning to attend an out-of-state school or university, but before you make any serious commitments, consider options that you might not have given much thought, before you possibly end up in over your head. Believe me, you wouldn’t be the only one.Free money: Get as much as you can
Another smart use of time is applying for as many scholarships as you possibly can. That includes those that might not even seem relevant to who you are; free money is free money, and if you need to write about why you have such a strong passion for the exotic birds of paradise, then more power to you.
In this day and age, there are foundations, institutions, corporations, local businesses, charities, etc., giving money away to the students who will make the time to take it from them. And hey, you never know, something you write may end up being worthy of a $1,000 (or more) scholarship.
My point is that taking little time now can save you a lot of time in the future, dealing with the stress of heavy student loans and complicated financial situations that you could have avoided with good preparation. Hopefully, now you at least have a better idea about a couple of things that can save you long-term hassle and short-term anxiety.I am looking forward to college much more than I had anticipated with the help offered to me, and I hope you can say the same for yourself!