Four questions to ask before enrolling in college
Enrolling in college is a big deal. You’re making strides to further your education and open doors to success. Although the payoff of college can be rewarding, it doesn’t come without its sacrifices. Once you enroll, you’re devoting your time, money and energy to earning a college degree. Thus, it’s very important to find a school that’s not only right for you, but in line with your future goals.
Rather than rush into making a decision about which college to enroll in, there are a few questions you should ask first:
- Is this school reputable?
When you give up your time and resources to attend a school, you want to make sure you’re getting a good value. One way to be sure a school is reputable is to ensure it is accredited. Accreditation helps ensure higher education programs are meeting certain acceptable levels. Check with the U.S. Department of Education to find out more. You might also check to see if the school is non-profit or for-profit. Like businesses, for-profit schools aim to generate revenue. Non-profit schools focus on investing funds into student education. The National Center for Education Statistics provides a great research tool here.
- Does the school have the right program for you?
Deciding on the right career training program can be tough – you want to pursue something that interests you, utilizes your skills and offers employment opportunities in your area. After you find a topic you’re interested in studying and have researched employment in that field, you must make sure the school you want to attend offers job training programs in that industry.
- Does the school work with your schedule?
Whether you’re fresh out of high school or have been away for a while, it’s likely you’re juggling more than just school. It could be family commitments, your social life, or even a job. It’s important to consider how the school you’re interested in offers classes. Are they online, or do you need to be on campus? Do classes start by semester, or can you start immediately? How long will the program take to complete? These are important aspects to consider before you commit to a program.
- Does the school offer hands-on learning opportunities?
Learning goes beyond the classroom, and having hands-on experience in the field you wish to enter could help you as you pursue future opportunities. Does the program you’re interested in allow you to go beyond your textbooks?