The only question you need to ask when choosing a college

The decision making process for choosing a college, should look like this:

career a major a college

Not the other way around.  Most people look at the other way around.

With this being said, college is a means to the end of pursuing a meaningful and lucrative career.

And with that being said, the only thing you should ask when choosing a college (after you’ve made sure you’ve thoroughly asked yourself and determined what career direction you want to take) should be:

What are the college’s placement rates or graduate outcomes from the program/major you are planning to pursue?

This should be your key decision criterion.

Wait you say, college is about more than just me getting a job!  It’s about the experience. You’re right, and it is about finding the right college where you can thrive, work hard and be one of those people who does get placed in a meaningful career because of what the college can help you achieve and through your own efforts.

If you want to search for a college by all those “fit” factors as well as cost, we love College Board’s College Search tool.  It lets you filter colleges by ten factors and save them for further consideration.

As some food for thought, you also might want to check out Malcolm Gladwell’s advice on the worth of degrees.  When comparing Ivy League to other schools that have a basic quality of academic standards, there is no difference in terms of job opportunities and the salaries associated with them that graduates receive.

Mary Ila Ward

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