College degrees are as varied as the people that take them. Though they all have their benefits, it can feel challenging to pick that perfect one. You want your degree to be worthwhile both in terms of what you learn and your value for money. You want to confidently say your degree helped you with your career, and so long as you follow this guide, you will.
Explore The Degrees in Your Interest
There are going to be foundational degrees, generic degrees, and specialist degrees available right from the get-go. Foundational degrees can help by providing you with the necessary knowledge you need to later specialize. The courses often last a year, and for those that don’t know what they want to do, they can be incredibly useful.
Generic degrees, like English, History, or Math, are as valuable as the courses they offer. They can be instrumental to getting your foot in the door, but only if you choose the right degree from the right institution.
Specialist degrees are great for helping you get a leg-up on the competition once you graduate, but specializing too early does run its own risks. Specialist degrees make switching more challenging for one, but don’t let that put you off as they are more immediately useful for your career. Watch out for degrees like English that start out generic but allow you to specialize as you go through your degree. They are easy to switch out of if you decide you want to focus your efforts elsewhere.
Compare the Degrees and the Colleges
Once you have an idea of what degree you want, the next step is to compare your options. Start first by comparing the degrees:
- Which degree has the most courses you are interested in?
- Which degree is most approved of by graduate students?
- Which degree is taught by top tier academics or industry specialists?
Once you have your long list of options, you will then want to compare the institutions themselves. Never underestimate the difference a good institution can make on your degree and your future:
- Which colleges offer strong internship connections?
- Which colleges work with top employers?
- Which colleges have strong extra-curricular programs?
- Which colleges rank higher, especially for student satisfaction?
Understand What You Need to Be Accepted
You can visit CampusReel to use their college acceptance calculator to get a better understanding of your likelihood of being accepted, but do know that is often just the tip of the iceberg. Always check the admission requirements and, if you can, try to get in touch with graduates or existing students in the program to see what qualifications they had when applying.
This can help you narrow down your list by colleges you are likely to be accepted for and provide you with a better understanding of what you need to do if your top choice is not in that list.
Build Up Your Resume
It’s never too late to work on your college application, though it is often best to want to know where you want to go with at least your senior year still ahead of you. This way, you can join relevant clubs, try for internships, or aim to work harder to build up your GPA. It will help you get accepted now, and work in your favor when applying for opportunities throughout college.