What You Won’t Find On A College Brochure
Junior in high school? I bet you are looking at college websites and if you’ve gone on a college tour, you’ve come away with a college brochure. A college or university will emphasize its most attractive features – not its flaws. Want to look behind the scenes at what they don’t tell you?
1. How bad/good is the weather?
You didn’t expect them to show you piles of snow on the cover did you? What you want to know is how bad is it? Even if you go to a warm climate, you might find it unbearably warm during certain months. You better be prepared for hotter than you expected in August when you move into Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana. Pack accordingly.
2. How much do you want to party?
What distractions are there on/off campus? Fraternities/sororities or parties – finding a noise- and chaos-free area to study is critical. Be prepared to “turn off” such activities when necessary – like before your grades hit the academic warning level.
3. What is the area/town/city like?
You won’t want to spend all your time on campus. You may need a break every now and then. Cruise community websites, chambers of commerce, and local arts and entertainment newspapers to get a sense of what’s happening near the schools you’re considering. It’s important to also check out – in person – the safety of the surrounding area. Even elite schools can be in poverty areas (Yale).
4. What supports are available at the career center?
Does the career services match the economic climate? This says a lot about its commitment to students. Can it help you with internships (the key to jobs)? What percentage of recent graduates find jobs after college? It might not seem important right now, but you’ll thank yourself for putting in the research when the time comes for making career moves.