(4) Geographic Location Of College Or University
It is one of the most crucial factors to determine selection of right college or university. A college’s location can really matter. It can have significant impact on your studies, travelling expenses, & comfortable zone.
If you are not living in a good environment then you may end up being a miserable experience for four to more years during completion of your degree.
If you are choosing a college or university much far away from your home then you should be comfortable while traveling a long way from home. You should consider the cost of travelling & other associated expenses.
You should also consider whether you want to live in a big city or metropolitan area, small town, near the beach or any other place. You should always consider various pros & cons of the concerned area.
Simultaneously, you should not forget to consider crime rate & cost of living, as well as level of distractions that may affect your studies. When finding a college or university, consider companies nearby as they can be a valuable source of summer internships & future job offers.
On the other hand, if you are living in small rural town then it can be difficult to find extracurricular off-campus activities. Having a hospital or clinic nearby college is always great. Thus, it will best strategy to visit & get a feel for the college & its surrounding area.
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(5) Total Cost Of Studying At College Or University
It is one of the most popular things to look when choosing a right college, school or university. Every educational program is associated with some form of financial investment. But, some of them can put you into debt even for years.
Generally, private schools or colleges are more expensive than public schools, colleges & universities. However, private schools or colleges tend to offer more grants & scholarships. This can significantly cut the cost of tuition to some extent.
Some of the basic cost associated with an educational program includes tuition fees, housing fees, cost of food, transportation cost, cost of books, cost of non-residents or out of state residents, cost of health services, cost of extracurricular activities, sports & computer, & other cost-of-living expenses & many more.
Several individual college courses may also have additional fees associated with laboratory charges, supplies & equipments. You should also evaluate the cost of living on campus v/s off campus. Some colleges may also offer “room & board” packages for students.
On the other hand, if you are living in expensive cities such as New York or Los Angeles then you are likely to pay 2 to 3 times more in form of house or room rent. Total cost of pursuing degree in a college or university will also vary depending on the length of selected educational program.
Every educational institute is required by law to have a cost estimator on its website. You should definitely use that to estimate financial aid & expected family contribution.
You can also fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This will provide you a good estimate of money you can get back from government.
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