Deciding where you go to college is one of the biggest choices you will make in your life. College is where you will spend the next few years studying, experiencing new things, and growing as a person. That is why it is very important not to take this decision lightly.
There are dozens of reasons why you should choose a particular school. As a student-athlete, there are a ton of things to consider when choosing not only where you will study, but also where you will train and compete in your sport.
Here are 4 questions you should ask yourself when considering a college or university:
Do they have your major?
As a student-athlete, you will always be a student first, then an athlete. That means you are attending college with the main goal to earn a degree, while being able to participate in athletics while you are there. Make sure that any colleges you are looking at have the subject and/or major that you are interested in pursuing a degree in. It is important to find a school that will have a degree you want because you never know what might happen in your athletics career. Earning a degree is vital to developing your career and establishing a foundation for the rest of your life.
Where is the school located?
The location of the college or university can have a major effect on whether or not you enjoy the school. You should take into consideration whether you want a rural or urban school, a large or small city, and what the climate is like year-round. For example, if you hate cold weather and snow, then avoid schools in geographic locations that will experience this during the school year. Another important thing to remember is how far from home the school is, and where your family and friends are in relation to the school. Being able to travel home easily for holidays and summer is important especially when you consider the extra cost involved.
Do you see yourself there if you couldn’t be on the team?
This is one of the most important questions to ask yourself about any school you might want to attend. Even if you get recruited, it’s not always guaranteed that you will be competing throughout your college career. If you are injured or the team gets cut from the department, you will still be a student at that university. You have to make sure that you can see yourself at that school even if you can be on the sports team you want to compete for. If the team or sports program is the only reason you want to attend that school, you will not be happy just as a student.
What can you afford?
This is the most crucial thing you need to consider when looking at colleges. Tuition for school is not cheap. Even if you earn a scholarship, there are extra costs to consider that may not be covered by your scholarship. Scholarships and loans are options to help pay for the cost of attending college, but you should be prepared to cover anything else that won’t get covered. Make sure to spend some time as a family and determine what you can afford with or without a scholarship.
Choosing where you go to college is very important and will have an impact on the rest of your life. Make sure that when you do make your final decision, it’s for the right reasons!