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Top 4 things to look for when choosing a college
by . April 27, 2017

Hi everyone! I’m a new face at Logo Brands - my name is Ciara and I’ve been interning in the Sales department of Logo Brands for a few months now. I will be with Logo Brands until I head off to Rocky Top in the fall. In light of Declaration Days, I am going to share some top things my friends and I looked for when choosing a school.

#1 - Proximity to home… We wanted to be far enough from home to experience the taste of freedom and independence but close enough to make trips back and visit. Being from Franklin, three hours to Knoxville is a good distance. I have several friends headed there as well, and we’ve already talked about carpooling back together for holidays and events. Some friends aren’t taking a car, but it’s not too far to have a hard time hitching a ride. The biggest factor for me was being able to travel home for family events since I have young siblings. I want to be involved in their lives even though I won’t live at home! I’m also looking forward to my family being able to come up for games, parent’s weekend, etc.

#2 - Campus atmosphere and surrounding cities… Big conference schools, frequency of school functions, surrounding community, sporting events, honors programs, access to amenities, dining options, intramural sports and Greek life are all considerations in picking a school right for you. I played volleyball for six years, so I’ve already talked about starting a team with friends who will be attending. Another thing is knowing that there are places to go off campus for dining, shopping and things to do that are close. And of course, the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee provide hiking trails that are frequently visited by students. Also check out master lists of majors and degrees. Find a good fit for your interests and that getting into the program is attainable. I will be a business administration major. The Haslam Business School is one of the top business schools in the country. Also check class sizes! For me, it will be a huge adjustment going from 30 to 200+ people in a class. The technology available for students was very impressive, too.

#3 - Campus facilities, such as dining, parking, dorms and bathrooms… You will be living there, so make sure you are somewhere you are comfortable and can keep up with a routine. Community bathrooms were a no-go for me but some people see it as as part of the college experience. Decide on your most important things that you need to be successful during the day, and make sure you work to get in a place with those things!

#4 – One of the most important, costs… I had scholarships to all schools I applied for, as did most of my friends. That made choosing a little easier. However, it’s hard to justify going out of state with the Lottery Scholarships for in-stat, and paying extra for out of state tuition. Piece of advice-- look for schools that offer in state tuition even if they are out of state!! I know many people that wanted to leave the state, but chose Mississippi State because they offer in state tuition to Middle Tennessee.

Good luck and let me be the first to say congratulations on declaring a school!! GO VOLS!

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