Should You Really Pick the Best College?

Should You Really Pick the Best College?

Getting admitted into college is a daunting (yet exciting) time in one’s life. Oftentimes, students think: “If I get into the most prestigious university, that’s definitely one I’m going to attend.” It’s easy to want to pick a college that has a particular reputation and makes your resume stand out, but is it the most feasible option for you?

I’ve come up with some things that students should definitely consider prior to committing to a college. For example:


The cost of attending college in the United States is one of the most expensive in the world (yes, you heard that right!), so saving money in whatever way you can is extremely important. Whether that is attending a cheaper institution, or staying in-state in order to not acquire out-of-state costs, it’s important to be wary of how much money will be accumulating over time.

For example, if you want to attend Columbia University, the annual estimated tuition fee is approximately $57,708. Times that by 4 years, and you’re at about $230,832.

That doesn’t factor in the cost of living, how much you will spend on food and travel, etc. Also, if you have to take out loans like many college students, the interest rates will be factoring in year by year, making your overall repayment cost a lot more expensive than the amount you originally took out. Have I scared you enough? Just kidding.

That’s just the reality of the cost of going to a large college in the United States. So if you can pick an institution where you are in-state, and possibly will receive scholarships – go for it, especially if you are having to take out loans. You’ll thank yourself later down the road.

The location

Many students commit to a college solely based on its reputable standing and what it will look like on their resume, instead of picking it based on the livability of the area; if they actually like the campus, etc.
As a student moving out into a new environment, it is important be aware of where you will be living for the next four (or more) years. If you don’t drive, you don’t want to attend a school that has little no public transportation available for example.
You should also be aware of the cost of living in the area and research multiple housing options. Many college towns are known for having shady apartment complexes (it’s the sad truth!) so just be extra cautious.
Overall, a combination of cost, location, etc. should be factors considered when choosing which college to attend. You will be dedicating 4 years of your life, so make sure to do what is best for you. Many students want the name of a particular school on their backs, instead of picking the institution that is right for them.

Did you know?

Getting good grades in high school can give you a greater chance of obtaining grants and/or scholarships. If you choose to go to an in-state institution, there are state-based programs, like Florida Bright Future scholarships. If you meet the particular GPA and SAT/ACT requirements (that vary based on the state), you get to obtain scholarships for college.

At Miles Smart Tutoring, a family-owned and operated company, we help students obtain exceptional grades and test results. Our students have obtain over $24 million in scholarships since our founding in 2015. We were the recipient of the 2019 ‘Best of St. Petersburg Award in the Area of Tutoring Service,’ and we are proud to maintain our 4.9 star Google rating.

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