Don’t ask for favors. Don’t talk to strangers. Don’t ask me why. Even though I idolized Billy Joel in high school, I need to admit these lyrics would be really bad advice to follow in your journey to land at your Best College Fit. As an independent college consultant, let me tell you why.
Since there are many good choices for college, ask yourself why should I settle for good? Why can’t I do better? Why not strive for the best? To do so you will need to find your answers and not just take chances.
Why? That might be the soundtrack playing in your head as you prepare for your college tour. Why do I want to be “Movin’ Out”? Why do I want to be a musician or an artist or a doctor or perhaps an engineer? Why do I want to want a big school or perhaps why a small school? Why this college? You may be right, I may be crazy, but here is some sound advice for you.
You should ask for favors. Realize that people you know can help you land a summer job. A teacher can guide you to launch a new club at school. Your private instructor will help you prepare for auditions. Just say it’s “My Life” and realize you are not in this alone. Dream big, work hard, and ask for support, and you will increase your odds of achieving what you strive for.
It is okay to talk to strangers. Why just rely on glossy college brochures and websites to learn about schools? Why just listen to a college tour guide share their prepared talking points? Break out of your comfort zone and meet students at the colleges you are interested in. Talk to current students and ask them why they picked their college. Why not eat lunch in the college cafeteria and learn from students? These strangers will tell you what they really think, and you will be shocked how much they will share with you simply because you asked.
Don’t ask me why? Be prepared to answer why throughout the college admissions process. Know your story. Follow your passion. Love your list. Strive to be happy in the next chapter of your life at your Best College Fit. That’s why.