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    tiffanygu

    Posts : 11
    Join date : 2009-09-13

    picking colleges

    Post  tiffanygu on Tue Apr 27, 2010 12:19 pm

    April 1st has come and gone and with the exception of a few of us on waitlists or trying desperately to appeal for just one more shot, the cards for the next four or so years of our lives have been all but dealt. Our big envelopes sit in front of us; their attractive ‘congratulations!’ and bright colors for a bright future beg to be opened. Some of us have a stack of these, a pile taller than textbooks while others have just a few. No matter the number, at the end of the month, we’ll only be able to pick one college to go to. Just oneWhere in the world am I going to go next year? So we need to find out what matters most to us, to find out what factors are going to alter our lives for the next four years. This decision could potentially alter our lives too, but that might be a bit overdramatic of me to say so. And so maybe right now we don’t know what we want from this, but we’re going to find out. If only because there’s no other choice.
    There are so many things that just exist in our lives that we take for granted that just might happen to make a difference if we were to be left without it. Are there vegetarian meal choices? Are you deathly allergic to all sorts of nuts barring the human kind? Is the campus wired with wi-fi? Do you not know how to ride a bike? But barring personal quirks and idiosyncrasies are other things of importance. Like libraries, you know, the place that you will ostensibly get some studying done. Number, specialization, comfort level of chairs and proximity of desks to each other. And social life. Life being the operative word and basically the question is whether it’s dead or alive. Sports teams, or lack thereof, and, in tandem, level of school spirit might factor in as well. Want a potential soul mate? Factor in those gender ratios too. The different things each college has to offer seems to be as impossible to solve as a puzzle with infinite pieces, with each fitting together to create a completely different result. But remember that these colleges want you and that’s a nice feeling to relish in once in a while.
    But the thing about these kinds of things is that you can never know if something is truly a pro or a con until you experience. As a rule, things sound good on paper. Maybe not so much in real life. And where the ever-handy pro con chart falters is the magnitude. Stadium-style classes might seem like personal attention is lacking but the ease of skipping class remains to be unparalleled by smaller classes. And at the end of the day, the whole purpose of college is, well, the education aspect. But the small facets of everyday life combine to form a solid home away from home, a comfortable place to learn and thrive.
    But sometimes, after countless hours lining up those pros and cons before deciding on the absolute perfect fit for you, the choice might not even be yours to make at all. In spite of the fact that we are all practically adults now, the parental figures still have far more authority than we’d like, the authority to all but make this life altering decision for us—just because they control the purse strings. And in the case in which your parents don’t want you to go, there’s no way to win. Though you can see through their transparently fallacious arguments so easily, their true reason for limiting your horizons and keeping you at the school they want you to go to lies deep within them. They themselves may not even be conscious of it, but with that buried deep down inside, there’s no hope for a victory on your part.
    So maybe the choice was clear from the start. Maybe it evolved out of careful thinking. Maybe you will end up flipping a coin. Maybe you’ll fall in love and have your hopes and dreams shattered by forces you can’t control. The whole college decision process has been so unpredictable thus far—how could we expect the very final decision to be any different? But I firmly believe that the places we end up, though they may not be where we expect, will be the right ones for us. It’s unclear now what the future holds, but one day we’ll know that this particular turn of events was the right one. But, by all means you are allowed to think and wonder about everything that might have been.

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