If you want to go to college, you can go to college. Despite the daunting application process, I promise you that you can actually do it.
You'll be amazed at the schools that the kids in your high school class get accepted to. You'll be amazed by how many kids are even going at all. So yes, getting into college absolutely doable, and you'll get into a lot, but then what?
You have to pick.
It's not easy, but there are some things you absolutely SHOULDN'T do.
1. Not visit.
How are you going to know if it's worth spending four years there? How are you going to pick up and move across the country if you don't know if you like your immediate surroundings? You're not, so definitely plan on visiting beforehand.
2. Have a one track mind
Okay, so you have this number one school that you've had for a really really long time. I'm not saying you can't/shouldn't go there, but you should look into everything with an open mind before making a final final decision.
3. Choose the college specializes in your current major only.
This may be breaking news, but a lot of kids get accepted pre-medicine and not a lot of kids graduate pre-medicine. And the same is true across every major you could ever think of. There's a better chance you're going to change your major than actually stick with it, and that's okay. Change it as many times as you need!=! But, in order to do that, you need a school that has a lot of options for different majors.
4. Follow others around.
Don't go to the same school as your boyfriend, girlfriend or friends just because they're going there. This process is about you, your happiness and your successes.
5. Obsess or forget how much it costs.
Yes, college is expensive. Costs also add up quickly once you're here. Do you need transportation? Do you KNOW how much textbooks cost? But it also shouldn't be the deciding factor. Financial aid is willing to work with you to find a way to make it (as close as it can be to) affordable.
6. Succumb to parental influence.
They might be the ones paying, but they should also understand that you need to do what's best for you. They might have gone there and they might think the school is the best fit, but they don't actually know. Don't pick a school just because it's the last one you're parents want either. Just avoid that conflict.
7. Decide on your school because it's ranked highly.
Ranks are SO subjective. You don't have any idea if it's actually a good school just because one person arbitrarily decided it was a better school than some other halfway decent school.
8. Not ask any questions.
This. Is. Not. A. Passive. Process. Ask a lot of questions, even ones that feel dumb, to a lot of different people. Ask people who go there, tour guides, faculty, staff, alumni, professors or anyone who has even heard of the school a question.
9. Ignore your resources.
The Internet, your guidance counselor, a campus representative, a book you found in Barnes and Noble. It doesn't really matter where you get your information; it just matters that you obtain it. The more information you have, the more informed you're going to be. And having information is a really good thing.
10. Rely on someone else's opinion.
Getting a lot of opinions is usually a good thing, but at the end of the day, this process is about you. Don't let someone else's words stop you from going to your dream school. You got this!