Five things to remember when choosing a college
Thinking about Christian college or university? These tips will help you find the right one.
Where you go influences who you know, what career you’ll pursue, and who you’ll become.
It’s a decision that’s important to take seriously — but you also don’t need to be overwhelmed.
In this exceprt from our free Christian College Guidebook, we take a look at some of the most important things to do as you choose the right college or university for your future.
While this information is particularly relevant for Christian students in North America, the principles apply more widely for any student making choices about their future education.
1. Talk to trusted advisors
Do you know anyone who has already attended college? Teachers, parents, older siblings, mentors, or friends?
Ask about their college experience. You might discover that their alma mater could be a good fit for you.
As you’re exploring options, think through whether a large state school or a mid-sized private school would be a better fit for you.
Consider which institutions have strong offerings for the program(s) you’re considering.
Ask your trusted advisors to pray for you and pray with you as you begin exploring.
2. Visit campus
Once you've decided on a major and narrowed down the colleges you're choosing from, it's time to make a campus visit.
Start with a simple tour, but then go deeper.
Find out if there are events that allow you to spend the night on campus. Staying in the dorms will give you a great sense of whether or not you could feel at home. Try to meet with a faculty member on your visit and consider the caliber of the department you’ll be joining.
3. Consider the cost
Money shouldn’t be the only factor, but it is an important one to consider.
Once you know the total financial aid that’s being offered, weigh your options.
Don’t be afraid to talk to your admissions counselor about additional opportunities for aid if you’re eager to go to a college but need a bit more help.
4. Explore student life
What are the dorms like?
Are there campus traditions, student publications, or annual events?
Are there clubs or Christian groups you’d want to be part of?
Where is the school located, and what do students do on the weekend?
Will you have opportunities to engage in a diverse community? What about athletics teams?
College is an education, but remember that your holistic experience matters, too.
It almost goes without saying, but we’ll say it anyway.
Pray for peace, for discernment, for faith, for the willingness to be obedient to the call of Christ.
Pray by yourself and with others. Rest in the nearness of Christ, and know that he delights to journey with you through uncertainty.
This is an important decision, but if you find yourself stuck between two or three good options, then you’re bound to pick a good option.
No matter what, God will work in and through your decision.