Posts Tagged ‘college guide’

How Much Are Your Favorite College Movies Actually Like College?

Categories: College Life

We’ve been getting a lot of questions on our Facebook page like this one:

moviescollege2

You have a good idea about what it takes to apply to college–the research, the ACT or SAT, the campus visits, the interview, the essay, and so much more. You’ve already even discovered your perfect college match.

Now what you’re wondering is what college will actually be like when you get there. What’s it like actually living on campus, going to classes, and college parties? Is college life really like what it’s like in the movies?

We’ve taken a balanced sampling of different kinds of movies based in and around college life and rated them on how truthful they are when it comes to a real students’ college experiences.

Closeness to actual college life ratings will be ranked 1-10, 1 being not close at all, 10 being on the money.

The Social Network
The Social Network’s protagonist, or Mark Zuckerberg, went to Harvard–one of the most elite colleges in the nation let alone world. That already brings its likeness to real college life down since most college students in the world do not find themselves at one of the most prestigious institutions in the world surrounded by friends making $300,000 over summer break betting on oil futures.

The tagline for David Fincher’s chronicle of how Facebook was founded is, “You don’t get to 500 million friends without making a few enemies.” Lucky for you, you will make new friends in college, just not 500 million, and hopefully not a set of athletic twins who want to sue you.

Closeness to actual college life rating: 3

Legally Blonde
Elle Woods is the sorority princess of her Southern California university. The Greek life enthusiasm is not too far fetched–you will come across college campuses with a very Greek-oriented student body; however, you won’t necessarily come across a sorority house as beautiful and equipped as the one Elle lives in. Exercise machines, expensive furniture, ginormous singles.

It’s also kinda difficult to decide last minute to go to law school and get into Harvard Law–difficult, yes. But not impossible.

Closeness to actual college life rating: 4

Rudy
Have you ever dreamed of playing Notre Dame football so badly that you quit your job at the steel mill, took on a part-time job on the grounds-keeping staff, got tutored by a friend in exchange for helping him get a date, and eventually fully transferring to Notre Dame, overcoming all odds and playing on the football team?

Yes? Then this movie is probably exactly what your college experience is like.

No? Then, uh, Rudy is probably a far-fetched realization of college life.

Closeness to actual college life rating: 3

Animal House
Take the Legally Blonde sorority house, subtract all the niceties, add a lot of horrible smells, holes in walls, and way too many housing code infractions, and you’ll get the Delta Tau Chi house in Animal House.

Yes, you will find the occasional toga party on a college campus, but the likeliness that not only the president of your rival house has a vendetta against you but the dean of your college does too is slim to none…hopefully.

Closeness to actual college life rating: 4

Accepted
So maybe you didn’t get into your dream college. It happens. But when that happened did you decide to just, ya know, make your own college? Did your innocent scheme take a shady turn when hundreds of other rejected students enrolled in your college leading to a big legal brouhaha but ultimately gaining the elusive approval of your highly respected father?

I didn’t think so…

Closeness to actual college life rating: 2

What’s did you/do you expect college to be like? Share you thoughts! Leave a comment below.


6 Tips for Your College Interview

Categories: Admissions Advice

flagEven though most colleges do not require that you have an interview, an interview can have a positive effect on your college application. Think of it as a super personal supplement to your paper application.

There are different types of college interviews. You might meet with an admissions officer on campus or an alumnus in your area. Whoever you wind up meeting with, an interview helps to demonstrate your interest in a school and what you can bring to campus.

Here are 6 tips to keep in mind during a college interview:

1. Be confident but not cavalier; Be humble but not self-conscious
Confidence is not the same as cocky, and humble is not the same as stilted. Know the difference before you head into an interview. The trick is to be comfortable in acknowledging your accomplishments and your strengths, but not too comfortable in self-congratulating yourself. Even if you’re a bit nervous going into the interview, try to feel and look comfortable while sitting down with your interviewer.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s too cocky to say and what works:

Overly Confident

Overly Timid

Just Right

This is will be the most interesting interview you’ve ever had. I’m sure you had plenty of other, more important things to do today. It’s nice to meet you. Thank you for making time for this interview.
High school? I OWNED high school. No one noticed me in high school. I’m most proud of helping to raise $120,000 for Children’s Memorial over my four years.
YOUR COLLEGE NEEDS ME. I’d love to go to this college, but you guys probably have so many other better applicants. I would love to attend this college, and think I could really add to the community.

2. Be specific
It’s easy to fall into vague and ambiguous conversation. So, instead, think of 4-5 specific accomplishments, facts about yourself or whatever it is that you want to say to the interviewer if it fits in appropriately. Having these in mind before your interview will make it easier to think of during the actual conversation. 

3. Avoid reiterating your resume
If your interviewer has a copy of your resume or application, do not simply repeat its contents verbatim. It will not only make you look like a robot, but the point of the interview is to put some life into your application. Tell your interviewer something about yourself that’s not in your resume or application already.

4. Explain flaws in your application
An in-person interview is a great time to explain some of the discrepancies in your application. For example, if you had a tumultuous sophomore year because you’d just moved to a new school and you had trouble keeping up with your grades, let them know. Be careful of getting into woe-is-me zone. You do not want to give a sob story or explain all of your hardships. Just state a couple facts that explain a bad semester.

5. Know about the school
Just like a job interview, it would be a pity to get the interview, and then not know anything about the company.  Have substantial knowledge about the school you’re interviewing for. This will let your interviewer know that you are seriously considering the school. Drop hints about a program the college offers that you’re passionate about or a special fact about campus that interests you.

6. Ask your own questions
Yes, the interview is about you, but showing interest in the person you’re talking to never hurt anybody. Whether it’s dry questions about the admissions process or questions about their experience at the university, asking your own questions demonstrates a deeper interest in the college than a person who’s just there to talk about themselves.

Have you had a college interview? Any tips? Leave a comment!

What Type of Student Goes to an Urban College or University?

Categories: Admissions Advice

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When it comes to filling out whichever college questionnaire you happen to be filling out today, the bubble that designates whether you want to go to an “urban” college or a “rural/suburban” one always gets you. It’s not like you’ve experienced going to college while living in a big city yet or lived at small college who’s campus literally is the city. How would you know the difference? How do you know if you’re a city college kid or a more traditional campus kinda kid?

Don’t fret. You’re not alone–people have been wondering the same question for ages. And now, an excerpt from the best selling 44 BC tablet “Shall I Go to an Urban College or Suburban One?”:

“Volo ut peto a urbs universitas.”
“Non a rusticus universitas?”
“Ego sum inconditus. Quis should ego operor?”
“Insisto vestri pectus pectoris!!!!”

The age old question is difficult to answer. So, today we’re attacking the urban side of the argument and putting forward some qualities of a student who might be more inclined to attend a city college. Here we go…

Q: What Type of Student Goes to an Urban College or University?

A: A student who…

Wants the activity of a city
College life is exciting, but add the element of a big city like Chicago, New York, Boston, etc., and you’ve got endless things to do. Go to class, and then go to the opening of a new restaurant. Finish studying for a final and then go be an extra in a movie filming down the street. If having a cornucopia of things to do in your free time appeals to you, city living during your college years might be right for you.

Wants the work and internship opportunities available in a big city
One of the unique things about going to an urban college means you’ll have more opportunities to work at jobs or internships that are only offered in a big city. If you’re living in New York, you could accept an internship at Rockefeller Center and continue going to school. A student at a college in prairie-ville Kansas–no matter how great a school it is–can’t take on the same opportunity without leaving their college.

Wants easy access to public transportation
Not keen on driving? While you’ll find that most college campuses, urban or suburban, are livable without having a car, in the city, you can travel further and swifter just using public transportation. No need to pay for gas or borrow a car to get to Ikea–just a subway, bus, bus, subway and you’re there!

Loves a certain city
Have you ever dreamt of living in a certain city? Your college years are a great time to actually get up and move there and experience living in the city of your dreams.

Wants the cultural diversity of a larger city
Most any college is a haven for arts and culture. But, a big city is itself a place to experience arts and culture in motion. From beautiful museums and galleries to ethnic neighborhoods and flee markets, a large city has lot of big and small cultural tidbits to offer.

What’s your opinion on going to an urban college? Leave a comment.