Advice on College Search

Trust Your Gut, Have Fun with the Process, Say Yes

January 13, 2014

With the regular decision deadline on February 1 and the final decision deadline creeping closer and closer, we asked the staff of the Office of Admission and Financial Aid for advice on college search.

No matter if you have already been admitted to Knox or are just starting to think about college, what they have to say may give you a new perspective when it comes to finding the right college.

Sarah Colangelo
Assistant Director of Admission

Say yes. As Stephen Colbert said in his Commencement speech to the Knox College Class of 2006, "saying yes begins things." Say yes to everything you are now and plan to add to it. Try new things at local restaurants when you visit campuses. Be kind to your high school classmates and get to know those you've never really spoken to. You are more than a major, so don't feel like you have to let go of things you love. Be honest about who you are, to colleges and to yourself.  Look forward to the next four years; they'll be as fun as you make them, so set that expectation now. 
Sarah Colangelo

DeVone Eurales
Associate Director of Admission

Remember to always be yourself and don't try to be someone you're not. Honestly, who are you? What are your passions? Who do you want to become? Only you can answer these questions! Final thought. Live in the present!  Senior year is a blast, enjoy it!
DeVone Eurales

Stephanie Fore
Admission Counselor

Don't forget that whatever college you attend will be your home for the next four years. A college should be a good fit for you socially as well as academically. The best way to find which college fits you best is to ask questions! Speak to as many professors, alumni, current students, and counselors as possible about their experiences on campus.
Stephanie Fore

Drew Flock
Senior Assistant Director of Admission

Take your time. You can't know everything about a college and, ultimately, you're taking a leap of faith that you'll be surrounded by the right people who will say, "yes" as often and enthusiastically as possible to your ideas. Make the time to learn about your future peers and faculty members by visiting campus, talking on the phone, or connecting via Facebook. At the end of the day, I want to know that you found the right place; the place where you feel safe to take risks and challenge yourself, the place that will pick you up when you're down, the place that will always feel like home.
Drew Flock

Sarah Goldman
Assistant Director of Admission

It's important to remember that no matter where you end up next year, you are about to graduate from high school! That is a HUGE accomplishment! Use your application as a means to reflect on all of the wonderful things you have achieved over the past four years and celebrate your victories!  When you go to make your final college choice, connect with current students at all the schools you're considering, trust your gut, and above all, have fun with the process. Good luck!
Sarah Goldman

Delorean Menifee
Senior Assistant Director of Admission

It's not always about how one starts the race. It's how one finishes the race. Be at your best today and moving forward toward tomorrow. Yesterday is over. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Make the most of yourself ... for that is all there is of you." Give yourself the best chance to succeed by giving maximum effort. Each decision you make should support the end goal. You owe it to yourself. How will you finish?
Delorean Menifee

Ann Brill
Director of Financial Aid

Finding the right "fit" is so important. Keep in mind that "fit" encompasses not only where you feel comfortable now based on your visit, but where you feel you will have the greatest opportunity -- both in and out of the classroom -- for personal growth in the next several years.
Ann Brill

Maria Filippone
Senior Assistant Director of Admission

Go into each new experience with an open mind and ready to learn. By visiting a school, having a conversation with a counselor or a friend, or researching online you will learn more about what you do or don't want in a college. Use that information and build on it. If you keep yourself open to the process, ask questions that matter to you, and stay honest about who you are and what you need, you'll make the best decision for you. Let the right balance of logic and intuition be your guide.
Maria Filippone

Hayley Schueneman
Admission Counselor

Take a deep breath, and have fun!  Think of this as a time for self-reflection and adventure. When it seems overwhelming, remember that this is just your next step. Not the final step, the next step. You are about to embark on a wonderful journey! Enjoy this time, ask plenty of questions, and know that you are an amazing individual with unique talents -- the right college is waiting for you!
Hayley Schueneman

Benjamin Wetherbee
Admission Counselor

Enjoy the search, but do your homework and make an informed decision! Research the school and specifically their programs that interest you (academics, athletics, internships, study-abroad, community-service, etc.). VISIT! Find out where you fit, where you feel comfortable, and where you can see yourself enjoying and spending the next four years of your life. And finally, keep an open mind throughout, because one thing I can promise you, the school you attend will have a profound impact on who you are, who you become, and how you view the world; it will change you in more ways than you could ever imagine!
Benjamin Wetherbee