For many, the path to a dream career is simple: high school, college, career. However, choosing a post-high school life isn’t one-size-fits-all, and many factors go into deciding which path is right for you. If you’re you’re still unsure about which route you want to take, you’re not alone. But there are resources out there to help make this transition, whichever you choose, as easy as possible.
Here are some tips for choosing your post-high school plans, because every bit of insight helps.
1. Research Different Types of College Programs
While there are the typical degree programs where you go to class, you study, you take your finals, and you repeat until you’ve got a college degree, there are alternatives if this traditional schooling doesn’t appeal to you. Medical programs like nursing, CNA, or phlebotomy offer a degree in the medical field without having to go through a medical school program and residency. Other programs to consider are fire or first responder training, police academy, or trade schools.
If you want to go to college the traditional way, but can’t attend classes on campus or need something with more flexibility, online colleges are available. These types of colleges are great for pregnant women, college students who work unpredictable hours, or those who would otherwise need medical assistance to attend classes. Attending college on digital platforms is becoming more and more popular as many students try to balance their schooling and their jobs or family life.
2. Pick Something That Interests You
You’ve probably had a lot of people in your life tell you to pick a major that ensures that you get a good job. But doing this could put you onto a career path that you completely hate. Maybe you want to play for your college sports team, or maybe you would rather major in something like art or a foreign language instead of taking a bunch of science subjects just because that’s where the money is at. Knowing where your interests lie is an important step in the decision-making process.
If you know your area of interest but you’re not quite sure where it can take you, check out CollegeCliffs. This site has information on associate degree and bachelor’s degree programs in every area imaginable, as well as accurate college information for potential schools, financial aid information, internship offers, and so much more. It is the ultimate source for finding a college degree that fits your interest, alleviating some of the stress that comes with deciding what to do after high school.
3. Consider Location
If moving all the way across the country to get a college education is your dream, then work to achieve that. If you are someone who would rather stay closer to home, whether because of the cost or because you don’t want to leave your hometown, that’s fine too. CollegeCliffs can also help you find college programs based on their location, and give you accurate information on degree types and career paths you can take once you get there.
With rising costs of both tuition and housing, many college students find it easier to stay at home and go to community college or take online courses, at least until they obtain an associate degree, so that they can save money and use the bulk of their financial aid for their bachelor’s degree and beyond. But if your dream school is out of state, be sure to factor in out-of-state tuition, housing, and transportation into the equations.
If you know that college life is in your future, but you’re not quite sure which path will take you there, the good news is that you’re not alone. Advisors, useful websites, teachers, and sometimes even your peers can help walk you through the decision-making process to ensure that you’re taking your future into your hands in a way that makes sense for you.