Let’s talk about a valuable lesson in the world of college admissions—one that you might find incredibly helpful. It’s the idea of keeping your college list and your ultimate decision to yourself.
You see, there’s a compelling reason behind this notion, and it boils down to the fact that making decisions can be much easier when you’re not constantly influenced by others.
Right now my son is in the midst of the college application process, and excitement is bubbling within us. He’s already applied to a few schools with rolling admissions and been accepted, including the one he considers his top pick.
You’d think it would be easy to scream our joy at his acceptance letters from the rooftops, but we haven’t exactly done that because while we wish we could say we’re all done with this process, the truth is, anything can happen between now and decision day.
Sharing Your College List May Solicit Unwanted Opinions
It’s only natural that the more informed human beings become, the more clarity we get and the higher the chances that we may view things differently. We may be tempted to share our college list with the world to solicit opinions, but before anyone does that, it’s important to consider this: When you start sharing your college choices with everyone around you, you open the floodgates for unsolicited advice and opinions.
Suddenly your aunt suggests a more affordable option, your teacher highlights a different school’s strengths, and your best friend brings up a slew of factors you hadn’t even considered. It can quickly become overwhelming, and you might start doubting the choices on your college list, even though you’ve spent a significant amount of time researching them.
Choosing to Share Your College List Has Some Benefits
Now, it’s not that seeking advice is a bad thing. It’s quite the opposite. Gathering information and considering different perspectives is essential when making important life decisions. However, when it comes to choosing a college, it’s crucial to remember that the ultimate decision should reflect your aspirations, goals, and dreams.
Keeping Your College List to Yourself Allows For Better Reflection
Many students and parents find that taking a step back from the noise of outside opinions helps them gain clarity. You can reflect on what truly matters to you, what aligns with your ambitions, and what feels right for your future. It allows you to make a choice that’s authentic to your values and aspirations, not to mention one that fits your family’s budget.
So, as we navigate the exciting but sometimes overwhelming world of college admissions, we are keeping our college list to ourselves, at least for a while. This buys us time to explore our options, weigh our priorities, and make a choice that resonates with us on a personal level.
After all, I want my son to know that when it comes to shaping his future, the most important voice to listen to is his own.
Use College Insights to help find merit aid and schools that fit the criteria most important to your student. You’ll not only save precious time, but your student will avoid the heartache of applying to schools they aren’t likely to get into or can’t afford to attend.
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