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Want to Go to College — What’s Stopping You?
OKLAHOMA CITY— The biggest obstacle facing students who want to attend college isn’t a lack of funding or a low ACT score. It’s a lack of information and planning. As Oklahoma City University Senior Admissions Director Michelle Lockhart explains, once students find the information they need and prepare for college, funding and other needs fall into place. College fairs and campus visits are a good place to start. “Students need to look at colleges early,” Lockhart said. “Start visiting campuses as a junior or the summer before your senior year. You can always go back and visit again later.” One advantage of looking at college costs early is the opportunity to apply for more scholarships and loans and to start saving money. Michelle Howard, Oklahoma City University associate director of admissions, said students should also keep an open mind about where they want to go. “Look at schools for lots of reasons, not just because it’s a school your friends like or one that your parents attended,” she advised. Lockhart said students can find a good fit for themselves by visiting campuses of different sizes and styles. “Go on a campus tour, talk to the students and the faculty and see where you feel comfortable,” she said. Lockhart said one common mistake high school students make is delaying their ACT or SAT test. “There are only a few dates each year and it can affect your scholarship chances,” Lockhart said. “Take the test early as a junior for practice and then you can always take it again.” Howard said parents can support students by keeping an open mind about college choices and providing input about costs and other factors. “A college education is an investment,” she said. “Sometimes students don’t look at it that way when they are purchasing books or paying room and board fees, but it really is an investment that pays off.” For more information, contact Oklahoma City University admissions at (800) 633-7242.