How to Make the Final College Decision

Choosing your future college may be one of the biggest decisions you’ve ever had to make. We know you may feel nervous or anxious about making the final decision especially if you attended adult education classes, going to college might seem like a very difficult decision.

Relax and enjoy the experience. You should feel excited about your options and the amazing four years that lie ahead.

Follow the tips below when thinking about each school. It may help to compare your acceptances side by side and rank each school or make a list of pros and cons for each.

  • Visit the schools you are considering. If you have already visited once, consider going back. Visiting the school with the perspective of an admitted student may cause you to look at it in a whole new way. Not to mention, college campuses can change a lot from year to year. When you visit the school be sure to talk to students on campus, visit a class in session, and stop and sit for 30 minutes at a busy place on campus.

  • Talk to your friends, your parents, and your counselor. You will be the one ultimately making the decision but sometimes it can help to hear other people’s opinions. They may bring up points you hadn’t considered.
  • Consider if the school is an academic fit. Do they have a strong program in your major? If you are undecided, do they offer enough majors of interest? Are there are a variety of departments and courses that peak your interest? How will you handle the work load? Will you be challenged enough? Does the school offer programs like study abroad, research opportunities for undergrads or internships? What is the graduation rate? How do graduates do with job placement and graduate school acceptance?
  • Consider if the school is a social fit. How do you feel about the location? Are you close enough to home? How is the student body? Is there enough diversity? A balanced social scene? Do they offer a range of extracurriculars? Do you feel comfortable with the surrounding city or town? If you are going out of state, is there a convenient airport for trips home?
  • Consider if the school is a financial fit. Can your family afford the cost of attendance with the financial plan you have been offered? Are there opportunities for work study or scholarships once you are a student? Does the campus or surrounding town offer job or internship opportunities? Will the school provide a good financial return for the investment?

Wireless Internet VS Ethernet Internet in college
One thing I’ve been loving lately about my college is that we have wireless Internet at most places on campus. This has shown to be intensely useful, whether for casually browsing Facebook while in class or as a tool to study somewhere other than my room.

Back home, we only use wireless Internet, and I’ve grown very fond of moving my laptop from room to room, rather than limiting me to one desk in the house. Using wireless Internet is great.

However, I’ve found that there are some trade-offs when I choose wireless over Ethernet:

  • Slower speeds. After testing my connection on SpeedTest, I’ve learned that Ethernet has a speed of about 5800kbs down and 2429 up. The wireless network reaches about 4500 down and 2000 up. Although this difference isn’t significant, the speeds of the wireless network vary a lot more widely. During peak usage hours, the speed dwindles. Typical browsing is fine, but downloading large files over the wireless is very inefficient.
  • No Steam. “Steam” is the software used to play many games online. Many other games and programs that require open ports — such as Halo, uTorrent, and SoulSeek — also will not function while on the wireless network.
  • No local Apache server. I run an Apache server on my computer. I don’t have any large projects there, but I do use it as a quick way to send files to other people and as a way to develop anything for Xatal. On the wireless network, I can only access the server via localhost.
  • Frequent disconnections. The wireless Internet will occasionally disconnect for seemingly no reason at all. This can be a bit frustrating and annoying, depending on what you were doing online when you were disconnected. The Ethernet connection has thus far been surprisingly reliable, more reliable even than the Comcast Internet we have back home.

Because both have their perks, I’ve reached a pretty solid balance between the two. The majority of the time, I’m using my computer at my desk, and therefore I use the Ethernet. But when I want to browse anywhere else, such as my bed, the library, outside, or in class, I change over to wireless Internet.

Switching between the two is fast, taking only about 20 seconds. I’m pretty happy to have good signal at most places on campus.
Which do you prefer at your college or home?