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Thriving in High School: Exploring College Options

Last updated May 28, 2024

High school is an exciting time with lots of opportunities to grow and learn more about yourself! In this article, we’ll share some tips about exploring all your college options during high school:

Scroll down to learn more about each!

Download our free Get Accepted Guide to learn about the college application process from start to finish!

A young woman with curly brown hair sits cross-legged on the ground and balances a laptop on her legs - Thriving in High School: Exploring College Options

Talk to Your Counselor

Your high school counselor is your best resource to start exploring your college options. Set up an appointment with them to ask any questions you may have about applying to and attending college. You will need to meet with your counselor often during your senior year, so now is a great time to start building a relationship with them!

Explore Different College Paths 

Here are some common college paths you can take after high school:

Four-Year College

Students attending four-year college typically earn a bachelor’s degree. Some students attend college in their home state, while others go out of state. For students who want to connect closely with their culture in college, attending an HBCU or TCU may be the right fit for them.

Two-Year College

Students attending a two-year college, also known as a community college, typically earn an associate degree. After receiving an associate degree, students can transfer to a four-year college to receive their bachelor’s degree, or enter the workforce. 

Trade School

A trade is a skilled job that requires specialized training and education. Examples of trades are technology, cosmetology, culinary arts, and healthcare. Trades can be learned through trade schools or community colleges. 

Learn About the Components of College Applications 

While different colleges and universities will have different application requirements, here are some common things you can expect to submit:

Learn How to Research Colleges & Stay Organized 

Before applying to colleges, it’s important to do your research. Different colleges offer different things, so taking some time to reflect on what you want from your college experience can help you build a list of schools you want to apply to. In addition to a school’s size, location, campus culture, and academics, you can research things like:

To stay organized during your research, use our free college application requirements tracker!

Have any questions about exploring your college options? Text #Hello to 33-55-77 to chat with one of our advisors. If you're using a mobile device, click here to have the text message set up for you!

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