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The ultimate guide to America's best colleges, 2022 : detailed profiles on academics, student life, campus vibe, athletics, admissions, scholarships, and financial aid
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How to Pick the Perfect College We've heard almost every reason imaginable for why a student would pick a college. For example, we know one student who decided to apply to a college because during the campus tour he noticed that there was a Krispy Kreme donut shop right in the center of campus. We even know of another student who wanted to get so far away from home that she took out a compass and a map and drew a 400 mile circle around her house. She vowed never to apply to a college within that circle. Depending on your personal priorities, these may or may not be good reasons to pick a college. But since we all have our own personal preferences, it's important to remember that the same factors that make one school a student's dream college may make it a nightmare choice for you. Following are some of the top tips for picking the right college. Researching the Colleges College brochures. Besides this book, one of the first places to look for more information about a college is in those beautiful full-color brochures that come in the mail. These brochures are filled with lots of useful information, but you must remember that they are biased and will tout only the positive aspects of the school. Always view the college's brochure with a healthy dose of caution. College fairs. Don't just settle for pictures and printed words. Go to college fairs and speak with the college representatives. For a schedule of national fairs, visit the website of the National Association for College Admission Counseling ( When you go, don't be shy about asking the representatives all of your questions about the college--that's why they are there. Rather than trying to meet with every college, focus on a handful with which to spend quality time. Ask for the representatives' business cards, and follow up with email reiterating your interest and sharing more information about yourself. Campus visits. The single best way to learn about colleges is to visit, but don't just settle for the official tour. Take time to do your own investigation by walking the campus, sitting in a class, eating in the cafeteria, and talking with some students who are not tour guides. If you can, arrange ahead of time to meet with an admissions officer and contact the department of your major. The best time to visit is when school is in session. It's hard to get a feel for a college when it's empty! Also, if you don't have the budget to travel to all the schools or the more distant ones, visit those closest to you--even if you aren't interested in applying. The more campuses you visit, including those that are not on your list, the better idea you'll have for what you really want in your dream college. College rep visits. When college reps visit your high school, attend the meetings. It's worth giving up your lunch time for an opportunity to get more in-depth information about the college and to form a more personal connection with the reps. Be sure to ask questions, and speak with the reps one-on-one afterward. Again, ask for business cards, and follow up. The relationships that you build with the reps are taken into account by some colleges when they make their admissions decisions. College students. Speak to recent graduates of your high school and ask them what they think of their school. If the school is close to you, visit the campus, take a tour, and ask to be put in touch with a current student who can answer your questions. If you call the office of admissions they might be able to put you in touch with a "student ambassador"--a current student who can answer your questions by phone or email. Counselors and teachers. There's help close to home too. Your teachers and school counselors have helped thousands of students get into college and can share what they've learned over the years. If you haven't already, make an appointment to meet with your counselor. Websites. Visit colleges' websites to learn about their admissions and financial aid policies, academic offerings, student life, and campus surroundings. To get a preview of student life, take a look at the websites that tell about the campus newspaper, student organizations, and even the individual homepages of students. These student sections are where you'll find the true portrait of the college beyond the marketing hype. Excerpted from The Ultimate Guide to America's Best Colleges 2022 by Tanabe, Kelly Tanabe All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.
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The only guidebook of its kind to combine extensive narrative college profiles with detailed data and statistics on each institution, this tome reports on more than 300 colleges and universities, addressing their academics, majors, student life, athletics, student body, distinguished alumni, admissions/financial aid, and postgraduation success. Tips on each college's admission process and student quotes from a national survey accompany each description to provide an honest and thorough appraisal of each college's strengths and weaknesses.

To guide students by the numbers, this book includes extensive statistics for each school, with figures on the student composition, class sizes, most popular majors, admissions rates, required standardized tests, deadlines, college costs, and financial aid. A must-have, go-to resource for any college-bound student, their parents, or guidance and career counselors, readers will also find a ranking of the 100 best college values.
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