Posts Tagged ‘collegebound’

Quality of Education and Its Effect on Graduation Rates

Researchers at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government have recently completed a study that tested the connection between institutional quality of a school and the completion rate of students who attend.

By analyzing the educational outcomes of students in Massachusetts public colleges, researchers found that there is a huge correlation between the two factors. Test subjects were students who were enrolled in a scholarship program that waives tuition fees for students with test scores above a specified level, and students in the program whose scores were below the specified level.

The scholarship program has been very successful in keeping smarter students in Massachusetts rather than attending another public or private university school out-of-state, but has not been very beneficial to those students who may be better suited for a higher-quality university. Many of them did not graduate in the standard four-year period.

“Choosing a lower-quality college significantly lowers on-time completion rates, a result driven by high-skilled students who would otherwise have attended higher-quality colleges,” the researchers explained. “For the marginal student, enrolling at an in-state public college lowered the probability of graduating on time by more than 40 percent.”

This study is important in the field of educational research because it is the first time that the evidence of the importance of university quality has been shown. Many high-achieving students are driven to attend universities they may be over-qualified for because of other considerations like tuition costs and distance away from home. In the college decision process, many families feel that quality is not the most important factor in picking a school.

Another important finding that the study noted was that students are extremely willing to not accept a spot at high-quality university if they are offered even a little bit of money from a lower-quality school.

It is definitely possible to get a good education anywhere in the United States, but for students just beginning the college search, it is important to set your sights on the best schools you can get into. If you love where you study and feel both mentally stimulated and happy with the social scene, you are likely to be that much more dedicated and driven to succeed. You only get to go to college once—make it count, and get the best education that you’re capable of!

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Should You Go To Community College First?

Categories: Admissions Advice

When you start applying to college, you may be wondering whether starting at a community college and transferring to a four-year university can be a good option for you. Community colleges can provide a great educational foundation for students who don’t want to enroll in a four-year school. There are many reasons why you should consider attending a community college first, and in considering these factors, you will be able to discern whether or not it is right for you.

Your Grades Are Too Low

If your grades are too low to be accepted to a four-year university, starting at a community college can help you get the bumps you need to transfer in. The university will take these grades into account and see your progress, which lets you apply and hopefully be accepted after your first year or two. If you decide this is the route you want to take, meeting with an advisor throughout your community college experience is crucial. The transfer requirements for universities are constantly changing, and your advisor can help you stay in the know about what courses you need to take to be considered. Planning early can be your key to success.

Location, Location, Location

If you know where you want to go to a university but don’t get accepted on your first try, attending a community college nearby can be a great way to open doors. In addition to being surrounded by the culture, sports, and students you desire, you will be able to foster a closer relationship with the university by enrolling in an affiliated institution. Many schools, like the Florida public universities, have programs with community colleges in the state that allow students to transfer in more easily after they complete two years and the required classes.

Financial Restraints

Lets face it: college is very expensive. You may find yourself in a position where you know you don’t have the money to pay for all four years at a university and wondering if there are cheaper ways to achieve a higher education. Community college is indeed cheaper than four-year universities, but they still can cost as much as $10,000 a year. If you are looking into this option to save money, be aware that it is more difficult to get financial aid at a community college than a four-year university—community colleges have limited resources because they are state funded. In this case, community college is still a good option for you if the careers you are interested in only require an associates degree. Many high-demand occupations hire candidates who have gone only to community college, and exploring your potential career choices before going to college can help you understand whether or not an associates degree will be sufficient.

 

Still looking for money to pay for school? Cappex can help you find scholarships!

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Facebook Etiquette Do’s and Don’ts for College-Bound Students

cappex facebookThe boundaries of social networking can be a bit murky. While networks like Facebook are meant to help you connect with people, should you really be open to showcasing your after-the-bell-rings life with teachers and college admissions?

As of August 28 in Missouri, the answer “is no.” The Missouri Senate Bill 54 will make it illegal for teachers and students to “friend” or accept friend requests on the network.

But what about college admissions? More and more often admissions people are looking up your online footprint, and the most powerful and frequent gems they find are photos. You’d be surprised how a photo on Facebook or MySpace or Flickr or that new network the kid genius across the street is programming can find its way through the annals of the Internet, and somehow wind up re-purposed and posted to a blog called something you don’t want associated with your name.

We know Facebook is a big part of your life, and people will post pictures of you, and you’ll post pictures of you, so just try to stick to Cappex’s Facebook etiquette Do’s and Don’ts of Facebook for college-bound students:

Don’t:

Indicate any illegal activity
So your friend who goes by BBQ because, in his own words, he ‘”loves BBQ,” had a hook up with some fake ID peeps on the other side of town and got you one. To celebrate, you had an actual BBQ and BBQ bought the beers, and Jenny, who has no filter, took a million bazillion photos of your 17 year old self drinking and posted it immediately to Facebook with the caption “Look at how much fun we can have now!!!”

This is wrong on so many levels. First off, be safe and smart. Second, if those photos wind up under the critical eye of an admissions officer, good luck. There are easy ways to stay out of situations like these: A. Update your Facebook privacy settings B. Don’t take BBQ’s advice. Seriously, we don’t want to bore you with advice that your parents and teachers have probably told you a million times over, but make smart choices. Avoid stupid things and you won’t get stupid pictures online.

Expose too much skin
Perhaps P90x has been doing glorious things for your abs, but capturing your newly toned muscles and posting it to Facebook might not make the kind of impression you want.  When you think of college admissions do the words “scantily clothed” come to mind? No. No they don’t. Think of it this way: Academia is about expanding the mind, not showing an inappropriate amount of flesh. Dress to impress. Or, at least keep your clothes on.

Parade your PDA
Love is a beautiful thing. From the inside. From the outside, it’s kinda annoying to watch. Keep your kisses off the Internet for the sake of humans as well as for your chances of getting into your dream school. It’s not simply that your public display of affection is annoying to watch, it’s also that a lot of PDA photos can show admissions people your lack of judgment on what you choose to display about yourself not just fleetingly in public, but permanently online.

Be overly negative
Nobody likes a sourpuss. Having pictures with negative comments about other people or ideas just shines more brightly on your intolerance. College life is about expanding your worldview, so too much negativity in your photos might dissuade admissions counselors from rooting for you.

Do’s:

Post accomplishments
Humbly displaying the pictures that your mom took of you accepting the award for Student of the Year is a great thing for an admissions person to stumble upon. It could really bring to life that little line in your application where you wrote “Student of the Year”.

Share your travels
Your backpacking trip through Europe demonstrates how you’re an explorer and student of the world. The fact that you’ve traveled illustrates to admissions officers that you are open to new experiences and ideas.

Display your passions
Just like travel photos, photos of your paintings, dancing, acting, athletics or musical ability adds to your application by showing you as a well-rounded, passionate student. Any activity takes time and practice–both of which are great qualities in a student.

Show your service
A picture of the before and after of that house you helped construct for a family in need or you canning for a good cause illustrates that you are willing to give your time to others in need.

So those are the Do’s and Don’ts of Facebook etiquette for college-bound students. But just keep in mind, you don’t need photos of yourself doing good things, winning awards, or walking across the Great Wall of China to get into college. This is just advice for those who are stuck on having pictures online that people, such as admissions counselors, could come across.  If you want to be 100% sure that a college is making a choice about you based on your application and your application alone, clean up your online footprint.

What’s your experience with Facebook and applying to colleges? Share your feedback and thoughts by leaving a comment below.