Empowerly’s Guide to Understanding the College List

crop woman filling calendar for month
Madeleine Karydes
Madeleine Karydes

Madeleine attended UC Berkeley and double-majored in English and Media Studies. She is now an integral part of the Empowerly team.

Drafting a college list is an important step in any applicant’s journey. This critical step, however, is often taken too lightly by students or families in a rush to get started. Taking some extra time to understand the process more fully will help you create a strategy that sets you up for success. Today, we’re proud to share the official Empowerly’s Guide to Understanding the College List. This guide is chock full of insights Empowerly has gained over the years, broken down and distilled to make it easy to read.

What do I need to understand about the college list?

We’re so glad you’re asking. As a matter of fact, the manner with which students approach their college list can actually determine their satisfaction with the outcomes of their apps process. Working with a college counselor, you would be guided through this process to help you lay foundational groundwork well in advance of your senior year! But if you’re just joining us and in need of a speedy crash course, read on.

Your college list should reflect your values and priorities, such that each school listed aligns with a comprehensive and nuanced best-fit paradigm. If none of that made any sense, here are some guidelines to help you get what we mean.

Here is Empowerly’s Guide to Understanding the College List:

Go ahead, download it! This is Empowerly’s Guide to Understanding the College List. This guide provides pointers, advice, and reassurance from start to finish.

We’re proud to provide this knowledge free of charge to any student who needs help. Read through it, share it with friends, post it on social media, and reference it any time. We hope it helps!

This is a preview of what you’ll find inside…

Okay, so hopefully we’ve got you convinced: best fit is the most important part. But how do you go about prioritizing your needs in the first place? That seems like the first step to finding what you need in a school. Let’s take it back.

To build a satisfactory college list, you first need to decide on criteria for selecting a college. These 8 suggestions provide an overview to get you started.

Top 8 Ways to Prioritize Your Needs [in the College List]
  • What Majors are Offered (and What Programs the School is Known For)
  • Location
  • Cost and Financial Aid
  • Campus and Student Body Size
  • Study Abroad Programs
  • Organizations and Greek Life
  • Academic Environment
  • Overall Environment

We also walk you through each component of this list, and why it matters so much.

All that and more is why we bring you Empowerly’s Guide to Understanding the College List. Reading through this guide is a great place to start. And remember, you can always reach out to the Empowerly community for more support.

Still not sure how to get started?

Of course, as we wade into this topic, remember that you’re not alone. It’s a lot to keep in mind, but Empowerly is here to help you manage it. If you find you need support creating your college list, contact a team member to learn more about the Empowerly program. We’d be happy to work with you one-on-one as well.

To learn more, book a consult today.

Questions? Let us know!