Pondering the possibilities

Avalon Kate Nash, Staff Writer

The anxiety of college applications may be over for most seniors, but getting into college is only half the battle. There is no set methodology or formula of how to choose after being admitted. Some value the rigor and prestige of academic programs, others favor powerhouse sports teams to rally behind or the social hub of Greek life, and many want a mix of everything. 

This decision has time constraints. Seniors who applied through the regular decision process have until May 1 –known as standard decision day — to submit a formal intent of enrollment.

Often students seek out counsel before taking the leap. One of the on-campus sources for such help can be found in Titan Center career guidance counselor Jaime Brown, who notes the week before commitment day many students come by the Titan Center to talk things out.

“I always tell students there isn’t a perfect school out there…there is the right college for you though. Students should visualize what they want in their life for the next four years…A lot of it comes down to location, major options, and a gut feeling,” Brown said. 

Senior Miah Garcia found herself conflicted when it came to choosing between popular locations San Diego State University (SDSU) and California State Polytechnic University (Cal Poly). Both had been on her list of top schools and offered features though contrasting she could appreciate.  

“For me, the whole point of college is to find yourself, and I wanted to go to a large school that had opportunities relating to my specific major…Going to admitted student day was really what helped me. At SDSU, I got to hear a panel of professors speak on my major. At Cal Poly I took a general tour and saw how small the area was…it was cute but I felt restricted,” Garcia said. 

The AVID program led by Karen Kawasaki-Willams works to help students weigh their choices as well.

“I would say start with the non-negotiables, think about the things you really want or don’t want to be part of your experience…visiting and comparing is also really helpful as a way to gain insight into what school is the best fit. You want it to feel like a home because that is what it will be for the next four years,” Kawasaki-Williams said.