University, Try it Before You Buy It

All these are very big and very intimidating questions to consider because a university degree is more than just a piece of paper, it is a formative experience and an exciting opportunity to shape yourself into the person you want to become.

You don’t have to spend thousands on the wrong education! There are four ways to discover a university and a course of study that will be right for you. It’s as simple as having a chat over a cup of coffee.

Sample the course  

Take free online courses or watch youtube videos to see if you actually like the subject you’re considering, read books by the leading authors in the topic area.

Ask to sit in on a lecture at a college or university near you.

Research the professors

You’ll be spending a lot of time with your professors, find out who they are before you sign up for their class. Understand who they are and what have they done in the field. It’s important to know if they are actively engaged in the topic they are teaching. You can do this by requesting to meet with them directly, by looking up their CV online, or by looking for their publications online or at the library.

Get a feel for it

Visit the campus of the college or university, walk the halls, sit in on the classes, read at the library, attend after school events, meet current students and eat at the cafeteria. It sounds strange at first, but what better way to get to know a place than by visiting? Grab a friend, and go!

Keep in mind: some schools may be more strict than others in letting visitors in, make sure you make prior arrangements with the school administration.

Meet the students

Students who currently go to the college or university are a great source of knowledge. They’ve made all the mistakes and have learned from them. Their insight can help you make your decisions but also better prepare you for your studies.

Be selective and mindful of the schools and the majors you consider. You’ll be at that place for a while and you certainly want to make sure that the experience fits your needs, interests, and personality. This process should not be full of stress, but should be a time of curiosity and discovery. A higher education is a luxury investment of time and money, so invest wisely!

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