These days, there are so many options on the table for students who want to further their education. While colleges and universities offer vital courses to help students reach their different career goals, there are also vocational schools which can fit the same purpose as the traditional colleges.
College or university focuses on general courses for the first two years of the program. During this time, students can decide what they really want to choose as a major degree with respect to their dream careers. It costs high tuitions fees and takes about four years to complete a bachelor’s degree program in a traditional college, after which the now qualified graduate can enter the workforce.
Vocational or trade school is more straightforward. Students need only two years to complete their training because the institution gives classes concerning each person’s career choice from day one and this is the major way it differs from the college program. Other noteworthy differences are the lower cost of tuition and skill-based learning.
A lot of students automatically jump into college from high school without considering this second option that could even be better for them, if you are one those people wondering which is the right option for you, here are some factors to consider before making your decision.
On average, it costs a whopping 127,000 dollars to fund a college degree in the USA and this has compelled over 70% of students to take loans that eventually grow into huge debts for them. With the significantly lower cost of the vocational training institutions, it is up to you to choose if you want to graduate with the burden of college debts or simply focus on building your life after school. The choice is yours!
Return on investment
Furthering your education in a university or trade school will cost you money, but which one of them gives more returns? College graduates are not getting jobs as well as we were made to believe. Though the salaries of college graduates are mouth-watering, a research has revealed that the unemployment rate among them has doubled since the year 2007. While these graduates have been facing a difficult labor market and are finding it hard to pay off student loans, their trade school counterparts have skills that are in high demand with good pay and zero debt burden.
Traditional college breeds employees who do jobs that can easily be outsourced to places where labor is cheaper and thanks to the advancement of technology, more and more professionals are getting laid off. The kind of skills you will have as a vocational school graduate will get you jobs that mostly require a physical presence and are quite difficult to export, so there is more security for you.
A student’s learning style and future plans play a determining role in choosing which institution to go for but the vocational schools give better value and more students should subscribe to it.
You are a senior in high school trying to balance your coursework with your extracurricular activities. On top of that, you enrolled in an AP course and you are planning for college. Thoughts of what next step to take, the major you want to study or perhaps you’re aiming for the Ivy League colleges like many students.
The last thing you may be thinking of is filling out and submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid also known as FAFSA. No! It should be the first thing on your mind right now. This is the only way to get access to over $140 billion which is available student aid from the federal government, thereby reducing the debt that should have accumulated after graduation, as a result of taking student loans. For some students, this could be the only means to pay their way through school. It is important because if you fail to apply for this aid, there won’t be any money to depend on. For students that are unable to pay fees out of pocket and thinking of involving themselves with student loans, it can quickly add up to your debt even after graduation.
Bridging the gap in the cost of education
As the name implies, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is absolutely free. Everyone should fill out this form, because there’s nothing to lose, with so much to gain. See this! From 2015 to 2016 school sessions alone, there was about $3 billion left unused in the federal grant money. The Federal Student Financial Aid seems to be the only achievable way to bridge the gap in the overall cost of education. However, you can’t apply directly for the federal financial aid. The federal government will determine your eligibility status for the aid, this is why you have to fill out this application form. Also, the schools, state government, and other institutions in the financial sector will use the information you provide in this FAFSA application to determine your eligibility for other student aids that are not federal grants.
Why is this news so important?
Why this message is coming to you now is because much of this financial aid that is given out via your FAFSA details is handed out on the basis of first come, first serve. This means that the earlier you start with your registration, the better chances you will get to receive larger benefits. As a matter of fact, the process timeline for the application has changed, making out time to set other things in place. Before now, this application used to be on the first of January, but this year, the process for this financial aid application process started October 1, giving you an extra three months for the application. This change will also benefit every high school senior. You now have the power to see your financial aid package prior to your selection of a college, giving you the convenience of shopping around for the best deal available.
Filling out this form is the first step to accessing federal aid for career schools, colleges, or universities. This federal student aid offers about $150 billion in loans, work-study funds, and grants each year. But to get any of that money, you have to fill out and submit the Free Application for Federal Aid. Not to mention, some scholarship, schools, and states also make use of the FAFSA for awarding financial aid especially need based aid. So do yourself a favour, find time this week to meet with your parents and gather important tax documents so that you can be one of the first to be eligible for your share of the $140 billion available in student financial aid.
Olivia Williams, the owner of Kampus Insights, offers private college counselling services in southern Brevard, Florida. She is also the author of Kampus Insights to the Max: A 5 year Plan for college success.
The college planning process might seem straightforward, and you might be tempted to leave it all to your bright child or student to handle. However, your child needs support and assistance through the college application process.
What can you do?
Creating time to help your kid is very necessary. However, you might not be savvy in every admission step. Deep research can help bring about more campus insight. You also have the option of seeking the services of an independent educational consultant.
You might still think you can still do it on your own and a parent or teacher. However, here are some of the reasons you need help during the college planning process.
Test and Assessments
Before applying to attend a college, your kid must have taken the necessary standardized tests. There are preliminary tests that you might not know about, which a consultant would know. PSAT is an exam your child can take in his or her junior year to prepare them for the SAT. The consultant can also provide the necessary tutorial tools to help your kid ace these standardized tests. Strong performance in these tests and the major senior year SAT, will help convince the college that your kid or student is ready to face challenges to come.
Unlike high school admission process, the requirements for college admission are very strict. Having the basic knowledge of subjects like English might not cut it. The admission process requires your child or student to be versed in mathematics and science, and at least an idea of one foreign language. As you cannot help with all that, you must encourage your child or student to join college-prep programs. This will give them a better idea of how their GPA should look. Their transcript must be immaculate, and you will need help to achieve this goal. Also, part of the course selection and college application process, The Advanced Placement Program also helps by giving students an opportunity to study and learn at college level. Exams and tests are conducted during the duration of this program. Excelling in those assessments gives your child or student a better edge at getting into the college of their choice
Finance and Scholarships
While planning for college, you need to know about all the local scholarships and have an idea on college financial aid programs. You can research these opportunities alongside your child or student. However, you cannot know about them all. Independent educational consultants, know more about scholarships and financial aid. With their knowledge and information which you have gathered, you can create the best game plan and college admission guidance for your child or student.
These are very important for college applications, and they are not things you can easily help your child or student with on your own. Selecting the best extracurricular could be nerve wracking, especially when your child is expected to excel in all these activities. Professionals study your child to match them with the best clubs and sports activities that would fit their personalities. You might not know, but volunteering and working part-time can also help place your child high on the list of students taken into a college.
There is only so much you can do to help your child or student grow. There is no harm in seeking assistance from a consultant. This will help reduce the stress placed on you, when planning for college.
HOW MENTORING CAN HELP A HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT HAVE AN ADVANTAGE IN THE COLLEGE PLANNING PROCESS
The idea of tutoring is just the same old thing. A one on one association with somebody who is an educator and mentor is thought that has been vital to intellectual advancement for a great many years. This one on one educational consultant delivered the most critical development in Ancient Greek logic. You may be searching for something somewhat less complex. Be that as it may, if mentors have been a successful technique for educational advancement since the era of the Ancient Greeks, and on the off chance that they have ended up being powerful for students and working experts, at that point shouldn’t high school students search them out? Subject authority is an unmistakable preferred standpoint of one-on-one engagement with qualified mentors. This sort of education enables a student to take a shot at an idea (or kind of issue, or section, or hypothesis, for instance) until the point when it is understood totally. Mastery learning has a tendency to be a new thought for the dominant part of high school students in light of the fact that the conventional classroom has taken into account the normal needs to keep up a pace while advancing through educational modules. Then again, a tutor can work at the student’s pace and utilize certain educating and learning strategies that interest best to the student’s pervasive learning styles. Authority learning is feasible through committed one-on-one coaching. We can consider tutoring with regards to sports. Envision basketball is your field. Team training is the customary classroom and one-on-one time spent with a coach, a particular shooting mentor, for instance – is time with a tutor. While team training is an imperative part of your prosperity as a b-ball player, it’s one-on-one time with a mentor who comprehends you as a man and a player that will enable you to truly hone your craft or master a specific component of your a game.
Step by step instructions to create enduring relationship with a mentor: 1) Share why you’re looking for coaching. Quite often, students looking for coaching or potentially guides are searching for higher grades. In any case, once in a while they develop this. Why do you need or need these grades? Will An A in your math class help you with college admissions? Whatever the case, discuss it with your potential mentor. 2) Share your objectives. What are your academic objectives? What about your career objectives? Here and now? Long haul? The responses to these inquiries will give your guide an unmistakable comprehension of what you need to finish and what will help you, instantly and after some time. 3) Ask inquiries that require data from the past to your present lesson. In case you’re learning math with an online mentor, you may get some information about how an idea would apply this in this present reality. In situations where you’re learning with a guide who took a profession or life way much the same as what you have as a primary concern for yourself, request counsel. That is all you need to know about how a mentor or an educational consultant can help you get into college.
Olivia Williams Independent Educational Consultant
In life, you can be prepared for a lot of things, however, the day you send your child to college can never be prepared for. You feel sad to let them go, but you are also proud of what they have achieved. Driving them off to the new city or to the college gate is quite easy. However, the process to get to the school gate is not as easy as you think. Sure, your child has good grades and colleges should flock at his or her feet but, there is more to it.
Physical and Emotion Stress
Earlier stated, the emotional strain experienced by a parent could at times be overwhelming. You must be prepared as not to let these emotions take hold of you. Manage your time to provide your kid with the best college admission guidance. Supervise application, know about the starting dates and deadline, analyse essays and support submission. Sometimes, you might even need to drive all the way down to get better campus insight. The stress of finally moving your kid to college already awaits you, so try not to stress-out from the beginning.
Of course, you need money to be able to send your kid to college. You need to make certain plans to reduce future financial strain. However, one thing you do not know is, colleges have more Financial aid than advertised. You might try to skip applying to the most elite colleges in the country; however, it is important to know that these colleges have the best need-base financial aids and merited scholarship programs. Research more on these colleges your child wants to attend, know their financial aid plan and begin to apply. To make things easy, you can seek the services of an independent educational consultant.
Colleges want well-rounded students
Taking the SAT and passing that is one thing, however, do not underestimate the power of clubs and sporting activities. Not all, but at least one or two activities will do because, your child needs to master all those activities. With a good GPA and recommendation from the activity moderator, your child has better chances of getting into his/her college of choice.
For generations, members of your family have attended a college, does not mean your kid is automatically qualified for that college’s admission. Try not to fall for that trap. Colleges expect a legacy to be well grounded and exemplary. Your child must be able to uphold the family name and meet up with the college requirements. You might be an alumnus; however, the university has more alumni who have deeper connections than you do. Try to help your child from the very beginning to become an excellent candidate.
College planning makes your child very anxious. There will be second thoughts about colleges, or even thoughts about not going to college at all. Be prepared to be a rock for your kid, and do what is necessary to make the admission process a smooth sail.
One of my passions has always been helping students find purpose and discovering their own potential. My key objective is to help a student connect with a college that will benefit them beyond academics. For it to be a place where a student can mature into a productive and firmly grounded adult. With on average freshmen dropout rate of 55%, it is imperative that each student be equipped with more of the pro’s of a school and the con’s of a school. It is critical that a student know what academic supports are in place to help them overcome academic challenges, what counseling services are in place to help them over a life changing event, what facilities are available to help ensure a student stays healthy and fit on campus, and what are the retention rates for entering freshmen at the institution. These are but a few of the critical questions that need to be address before investing on average $23,000 per year. So my work as an independent educational consultant is necessary for improving the college graduation rate which is directly related to finding a college that fits the emotional, spiritual, academic, and financial needs of the student. It is also a pleasure to offer personal development coaching for students as they journey to find and define themselves. This is not easy process but with the help of a college planning consultant the load can definitely become lighter.