Senior year of high school

#1
I am going into my senior year of high school which means it's time to start looking into colleges. I can't believe how much is involved with all of this. There are the necessary tests that need to be taken, all of which cost money to take. Then there is sorting through all of the colleges available, and choosing those that are notable and reputable for what I want to study.

There is also the fact that every application costs money just to submit. Can you believe that colleges, which already charge tens of thousands of dollars a year, also charge us students just to apply? That is crazy! I was researching all of this online and found some information on Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/College_admissions_in_the_United_States about the overall process and such. They state that the average student will apply to seven different colleges with each costing an average of $40 per application.

This means I can expect to spend nearly $300 just to apply to several colleges. So I will be paying several schools to tell me they don't want me? I wish I could get women to pay me to turn them down for a date! That would be some business now wouldn't it!

So I am looking into the entire process for getting into college and I simply cannot believe how crazy it is! Who would have thought that applying for college would be so complicated! I can literally see the steam coming out of my ears just learning about it all. I can't even begin to imagine the stress that will be involved with actually doing it all. The SAT test was crazy enough, not to mention expensive. Then I find out that some schools use different testing now, which is something I just recently learned.

So after thinking about how complicated all of this is; I began to look for programs that will help me through the overall process in order to make it easier. There is a bunch of junk available online and tons of people who are willing to milk me for more of my money in order to provide me with information about the application process..

I did manage to find a program at http://www.tapforcollege.com/ which I found with great reviews. I am seriously considering spending the money in order to help make things that much easier. The program is a two DVD set that walks us through the entire admissions process. Most of the information and programs I found only offer tips and advice. This is one of the only programs that offer a complete step by step guide for the entire application and admissions process.

I was wondering if anyone has used a program like this before to help them through the process. I was also interested in any other information that anyone could provide to help make the overall process and hunt that much easier for myself. I am open to any advice and help that anyone can offer. I am trying to avoid spending thousands of dollars before I even get started if at all possible. I can't believe how crazy expensive it can be just to advance my education. No wonder people end up in debt for so long just because they have chosen to go to college.
 

maartenbuis

TS Contributor
#2
You might consider studying abroad. Most European universities are a lot cheaper (though the British ones are getting more expensive, but they hardly count as European anyhow...) and offer a solid academic education. This is obviously not the right solution for everyone. For example, you would probably have to learn another language, which some find easier than others. You would have to adept to another (similar but definately not the same) culture, which again some find easier than others. The universities often presume knowledge taught in the high school (equivalent) in that country which often puts different emphasis on different fields then the US high schools (e.g. more emphasis on math less emphasis on "soft skills"). This may mean that you need to study a bit harder on some subjects, while others are too easy for you, and some are better at adjust to that than others. A foreign diploma may be an advantage later on, as it indicates international experience, but it may also be a disadvantage, depending on how willing US employers are to recognize foreign diplomas (assuming you want to return to the US afterwards...).
 
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