Feeling overwhelmed by the college search? Wondering how you’ll find your ideal college when this whole process is new to you?
The past few years have been full of change, but the end goal—a college education at the perfect school for you—remains the same. We’re here to help you through the process with a few helpful tips.
Adaptability is key
There’s no question that the college search process is overwhelming and might leave you wondering where to start. Step one is simple: start exploring in whatever way works best for you. Most schools offer in-person tours, and there’s so much information online, including virtual tours and information sessions, making it easy for you and your family to explore several schools in less time. At WPI, we offer several tour options; check them out and find the one that’s best for you.
Many colleges around the nation have made adjustments and become more flexible regarding their application requirements during the past few years. Some are waiving application fees or standardized tests (but with WPI’s test-blind application process and decision to waive undergraduate application fees, you don’t have to worry about either one). Take a deep breath; you’ve got this
Explore the possibilities
An important part of the college search process is creating a list of reach, possible, and safety schools. Most schools are invested in giving you the best experience possible, so check out all the information online about your top choices, then see if it’s possible for you to visit campus in person. If you’re feeling nervous because you couldn’t personally tour each campus, remember that you’re not alone, and that the right school for you will feel that way whether you experience it virtually or in person.
Know your deadlines
An even more important part of the process? Deadlines. Make sure you know the deadlines for FAFSA; the CSS profile; early decision, early action, and regular decision applications; and letters of recommendation. Remember, as a test-blind school, WPI doesn’t consider test scores in the application process at all, so cross those off your deadline to-do list.
Figure out financial aid
Financial aid plays a big part in the final decision of where you’ll attend college. WPI offers aid through need- and merit-based scholarships and grants, which don’t need to be paid back. Loans are also available from federal sources and private institutions; each one may have varied interest rates and payback timelines. Don’t be afraid to connect with WPI’s financial aid team to learn what your financial aid package means for you and your family.
You’ve been accepted—congratulations! This is definitely exciting, but might also lead to more questions. If an Accepted Students Day is offered, do everything you can to attend. If you can’t, be sure to explore the school’s virtual accepted student options; they’ll still offer valuable insight and information. Get ready, you’re one step closer to making your final decision.
See you soon!
Once you’ve chosen your school, take some time to celebrate your accomplishments before getting ready for next steps. You did it! At WPI, we see you as a member of our family; everything we do revolves around that principle. What you do next will start you on the career path you’ve been dreaming about, and we’re proud to say that our students earn some of the highest average starting salaries right after graduation. We know how hard you’ve worked to get to this point, and we’re here to support you and help you succeed through the next four years and beyond.