It can be daunting to start thinking about college. You might not know what you want to be; you might have no idea which school you want to attend. If that describes you, then read this post.
Figure out what's important to you.
The best place to start thinking about your future life is (guess what): you. The more you explore what college can offer you, the more you will see just how many options are available. Perhaps you're passionate about engineering and have loved math since elementary school. If you're more like me, you aren't sure what you want to do yet, and that is not only ordinary, it's good if you use your indecision to keep your mind open to options.
Here's an exercise: take a piece of paper and list some of your strengths and life values. If you're stuck, ask a friend or family member to give you an idea. Then take a different color and write down possible career ideas next to those qualities or goals. For example, "people person" might lead to "service industry," "marketing," or could mean "teacher" or "entrepreneur." Let your personal ambition guide your thinking.
If you're ready for something more concrete, try the following resources.
O-Net Online: Used by high school and college counselors, a database on pretty much any job currently available in the United States! This is best if you have a general idea of what you want to do already and want to firm up your plans. If you're not yet sure, try their Interest Profile Quiz to see how jobs match up with what you enjoy doing.
USU's Focus2 Career Assessment: Simply make a free account and you can take surveys to help you figure out your work interest, values, personality and skills, then match those to possible majors and careers.
Explore the College Board's Big Future program.
You might have heard of the College Board: they offer the SAT and AP test programs. Yep, they know what they're talking about as far as getting into college. But did you know they have an entire site dedicated to helping students figure out where they're going and how to pay for it? You can go to and explore BigFuture directly, but if you're short on time, we'll be putting together a blog post soon about the best offerings of this site. For now, it has sections on: finding colleges, exploring careers, financial aid, and customization plans.
Need more personal advice? Contact us (or your high school counselor).
Websites are useful, but sometimes you just need an in-person connection to get you going! Your high school counselor can help you, but the site's creators and our college mentors are just as willing to help if you have any questions. To send us an email, simply go to our home page, scroll down to the "Contact Us" section, hover and type your message. We'll get back within a week. If you're a junior or senior, you can also sign up for our College Mentor program by going to our "Mentor" tab off the home page.
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I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!