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How to Pick the Right BC College or University

Need help figuring out which college or university to apply to in British Columbia Canada or anywhere in the US? Here's some sweet college pickin tips:

You've made it through high school finals, been involved in a few extra curricular activities, possibly have lived at your parent's place about as long as you'd like, and now you're looking forward to going to college or university in BC. But how do you pick the right BC College or University? Do you just pick the one that your older brother or sister went to because it's close to your parent's place, or do you pack your bags and head off to the school of your dreams?

You're ready to start applying to colleges and Universities in British Columbia, but where do you start? Before you start firing off applications, consider these suggestions for picking a post secondary school that's best for you:

Apply To More Than One School
Don't put all of your hopes in one school. Apply to a number of different schools in case your favorite BC college or university doesn't accept you the first time you apply. . The big thing to do is apply to many schools. While this may seem like a guideline for later on in the process, it is important to remember this early.

Shop Around
Do your homework. Shop around. Talk to others who have attended the schools you're attending. Visit those schools. Talk to counsellors at your local college or highschool. Consider many different schools and all of the different programs and special programs offered by each.

Choose Location Carefully
Don't overlook the physical location and city of the BC colleges and universities you're applying for. Is one way far north, hundreds of miles from anywhere, or is it right downtown Vancouver on the ocean? Research the town or city, including the cost of living, availability and cost of student accomodations, availability of public transit, etc. Also consider your interests and weather preferences.

Count Your Pennies
Financing your education might be harder for you than actually passing your classes. Don't overlook the price differences per credit hour or per semester at each school. Consider whether there's opportunity to get a job part time during the summer, getting a co-op job related to your desired area of study. While many hopeful BC college and university students apply for student loans, many do not get them. Have some backup plans to help cover your finances, and apply at schools you can afford. Often going to a local community college for your first year or two will result in a significant cost savings for you.

School Culture & Prestige
Find out what different schools are known for. Is it a party school, a university with a strong sports focus, excellent science program? Read each schools local papers to get a feel. Talk to people. Hang out at the BC college or universities on your short list if you can. You'll potentially be spending a good number of years at the place, so don't jump in without first testing the water as much as you can. Do any of the bc colleges or universities you're considering hold any academic prestige in your desired areas of study?

Related Reading

Colleges and Universities in Canada Resources

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