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Friday, June 21, 2024

North Central College: Tips for approaching the college search process

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By Agnieszka “Aggie” Hanni,
Vice President for Enrollment Management and Marketing

Fall means cooler temperatures, football, pumpkin spice in everything, and — college search season. If you are, or know, someone who plans to start college next year, you may be both excited and overwhelmed by the process of choosing where to apply.

Whether you’re looking to narrow your list of potential schools or add new ones to the mix, it can help to focus on a few key factors:

Location

Do you want to go far from home or stay close? Do you prefer an urban setting, a small town in a rural region, or perhaps a major metropolitan area that offers the best of both worlds? Visiting a campus is the best way to see if a school feels right to you. North Central College students often say that a sense of community drew them to our campus, whether they experienced it during a visit day with many other prospective students or while touring with a small group.

When you do visit a school, don’t forget to see the area surrounding the campus. Does it feel safe? Are there dining and shopping options? Are there businesses where you could find a job or internship? Would you be able to access public transportation, if needed? All of these are important considerations as you proceed in your search.

Academic Fit

Academic programs are another key factor. If you are set on a major, you want to be sure a school has that offering. Not sure what you want to study? Many first-year students arrive at North Central undecided on a major. Their process of self-discovery is supported by faculty and student success coaches, and they have many opportunities to develop their interests outside the classroom — like lead a student organization, study in another country, conduct undergraduate research in a lab, or intern at a corporation.

Even if you have a major in mind now, you may want to change later. Be sure there are other options to consider. For example, North Central has 82 undergraduate majors. When students decide on a different major, it’s often because they have discovered an exciting new path that better fits their interests and talents.

Financial Investment

Speaking of change, as you weigh your options for investing in a college degree, be sure to look beyond the career path and see the bigger picture. The entirety of the college experience prepares you for life by providing the best foundation for adapting to change. At some point in your life, you may switch jobs, or even careers, because of personal growth, advances in technology, or larger economic shifts. College is an investment in your future, whatever it may bring.

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North Central College
North Central Collegehttp://www.northcentralcollege.edu
North Central College provides students with the confidence, instruction and direction they need to exceed their personal best inside and outside of the classroom and throughout their careers. Founded in 1861 and located just 28 miles west of Chicago in the Historic District of Naperville, Ill. — named among the nation’s “Best Places to Live” by Money magazine — North Central is home to more than 2,800 students and offers 82 undergraduate majors, 67 additional undergraduate minors and concentrations, and 22 graduate degree and graduate certificate programs. Visit northcentralcollege.edu to discover why U.S. News & World Report has named North Central a “Best in the Midwest” school for 29 years in a row, and to learn more about the College’s state-of-the-art facilities and distinctive programs, particularly in the sciences and business.
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