There are many tips I give high school seniors and high-schoolers in general, but the main 5 are:
1. When choosing a University don’t be afraid to go far away or go close to home. The best place for you to go could be just around the corner or on the other side of the country. I came to Huntsville from Ohio and I’m very glad I did. My best friend is from Huntsville and I’m loving it here.
2. Start looking and applying early. It sucks, but scholarships and grants are handed out early. Plus you may get a bunch of free stuff for applying early!
3. Keep your grades up! You may think “I’m a senior, it doesn’t matter, I don’t need to learn anything here anymore, or what’s the point”. College is about learning inside and outside the classroom. You may not realize it now, but what you learn in high school becomes handy in college.
4. It’s ok if you don’t have a major picked out! You have plenty of time. It may take you an extra year or two, but it’s worth it when you do find something you love. Just go take classes in different areas. Most of the time you will find that you really like a subject or you really hate it. Then if you find that you are at the wrong university, it’s ok to transfer universities once you figure it out. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life my first year, but when I finally figured it out I transferred to UAHuntsville and I’m glad I did!
5. Do what will make you happy! You may have friends or family telling you what they think is best, but in the end it is you that has to make the decision and live with it. They might be upset for a while, but in time they’ll realize it’s for the best. College/adult life is about making your own decisions (good or bad), experiencing the consequences, and (hopefully) learning from them. My family will talk to me and give advice , but will not tell me what to do because they know I have to make it on my own. It will be frustrating at times, but you will be a better, more independent person for it.
I hope this helps you and your college experience!
My friends (Amy and Angela) on a weather balloon recovery mission. My hair is a mess, but was an interesting trip!