What should I be thinking about?
You should think about a number of things when you choose a school. What program do you want to study? What are your career goals and how will you achieve them? Do you want to stay close to home or travel to a new place? It’s important not just to pick the right program, but to make sure the university is a good fit.
Keep your best interests in mind
Sometimes it’s easy to forget that the choice of where you go to school and what program you study have to make sense for you. Maybe you don’t want to disappoint your parents, or maybe you don’t want to leave your friends. The most important thing to remember is that the decisions are yours to make. You can — and should — ask for input, but be sure to look after your own interests.
Do your research
One way to focus your energy is by looking more closely at what’s out there. Learn as much as you can about different universities, the various program options, the places you might want to live while you go to school and the many new things to expect from university life. Having that information will make it easier to figure out what your priorities should be when it comes time to make decisions.
Ask for advice
You probably know at least a few people who have been to university — your family, friends and teachers — and they can be a great resource when you’re trying to decide about your future. Ask them about their experiences, what surprised them about university and what they would do differently. It’s valuable insight you might not be able to find anywhere else.
There’s a lot of information coming at you, so stay on top of things by taking notes. Don’t think of it as work — you’ll save time and energy by not having to keep looking up the same stuff, and you’ll have an easier time sorting out all the details.
Don’t stress out
Prepare by reminding yourself you don’t have to make all your life-changing decisions right away. Some students end up changing their minds (and their degree programs!) after they’ve already started school. Your world is about to open up in a big way, and there’s nothing wrong with choosing to explore everything it has to offer.