Choose the Program, not the College

The college search and application process can be a difficult one to start without knowing what your first steps should be. Parents and high school seniors tend to feel overwhelmed before beginning the process because they don’t know where to start. Crosby Scholars exists to help ease the inevitable anxiety that joins students and parents!

Here is some important advice before writing down your target list of colleges- choose the program, not the school. If you get too hung up on the school name, you might make a terrible decision. For the most part, employers look for the degree you received. They care more about the degree than the school you attended. I have worked with many seniors who have an unwavering desire to attend a specific school. Well, that dream school doesn’t always have the program or major they would like to pursue and they still choose that school. Yes, the school you attend must be a good “match” (academically and financially) and a good “fit” (desired location, size, etc), but you shouldn’t base your decision solely on the school name. Our culture tends to tell us that labels matter. Well, they don’t. Tear off the labels.

 Some students are willing to go into major student loan debt because the school becomes more important than the degree. Approach this with a cost-benefit analysis. If you leave school with a debt you will struggle to ever pay back, reconsider the school you are choosing. Will the salary of your desired career enable you to pay it off in ten years? What is more important- claps for attending a school with a good reputation or a freedom from crippling school loans throughout your adulthood? Student loans ARE NOT BAD. I want to be clear about this. Make sure you are practicing SMART loan borrowing. Research, research, research! Does your dream school have the program you would like to pursue? Have you thought through the financial side of things? Do the pros outweigh the cons? Talk to several people you trust as you navigate this process.