The best four years of your life could be the worst if you make the wrong choice. For most teens, choosing where to attend college is the biggest decision they’ve ever had to make. If you’re well past your teen years this might seem a tad dramatic, but I would argue that where you go to school plays a large role in determining the path of the rest of your life.
A lot of people meet their lifelong best friends and even spouses during their undergrad years, and your professors and program directors tend to play a role in shaping your academic beliefs and setting up career connections. In those ways, choosing a university is a lot like picking one future out of a collection of many different possibilities.
I’m a person who is very aware of how one thing leads to everything else, and I spent most nights of my 17th year laying awake and stressed. I did tons of research, visited six different campuses across three different states, and in the end even paid to commit to one school before changing my mind and committing to a different one the very next day.
I know it’s tempting to pick your school based on one factor alone: maybe your best friend is going to a certain school or someplace has a really pretty campus. Ultimately though, the best way to find your fit is to look at all of the factors described in this infographic together. That way you can see which option checks off the most and biggest boxes for you.