Have you been faced with the happy dilemma of choosing among multiple college acceptances?
If this is your predicament, congratulations! Now it’s time to make some decisions!
Check Out the Vibe
If you have the opportunity, go and visit your choices. Colleges welcome accepted students back to campus. Take the tour, eat the food, attend a class. Read the bulletin boards and pick up a copy of the student newspaper. A walk around the campus on Saturday morning can give you a sense of what students were up to the night before. Are you intrigued by what you see? Do the current students seem like the types of people you can imagine spending the next four years with? Is there enough diversity? Are people friendly?
From an academic standpoint, colleges often talk about their class sizes, and accessibility of professors. Dig a little bit deeper into the curriculum. Is there a “core”? Is it rigid or flexible? What types of classes will you be able to take as a freshman? Are the classes seminars or lectures? Does much of the junior class depart for foreign lands?
The Logistics of Waitlists
If you are also placing your name on a waitlist, it is important to place a deposit at ONE institution that you’ve been accepted to by May 1 (*always double check deadlines for each school). This will guarantee your spot in the class, and will allow the college to begin preparing for your arrival – with residence hall space, advisors, and orientation. Pay careful attention to the paperwork you submit, and be mindful of the deadline. Should your waitlist choice call for you, you may forfeit your original deposit. If you find yourself certain that you will not attend a college to which you have been offered admission, kindly let them know that you will be enrolling elsewhere. Your spot will be taken – someone else is anxiously hoping to turn a waitlist offer into an admit.
In the end, your final choice is often a gut decision (though finances may also play a role). If you have a strong feeling, go with it. And don’t look back. You have four, maybe five years in front of you. Make the most of them.