No matter how many petabytes of data we might have on colleges today, nothing can beat the first-hand experience and college advice from parents.
And this is regardless of whether they’ve finished the college education themselves or have sent one or more of their kids off to college.
Things We Wish We Knew: College Advice From Parents
Although opinions differ when it comes to choosing the right college and major, the vast majority agrees that college was one of the best experiences in their lives and that excessive debt should be avoided like the plague it is.
That being said, here are some of the most interesting and useful pieces of advice offered by parents whose children are, or already have been through the college experience.
Things We Wish We Knew: College Advice From Parents – Photo by klimkin
1. Find what you love and let it consume you
Following your passion can be challenging, with some people going throughout their entire lives without finding that single perfect job or career.
People who have followed their dreams no matter how hard it got often state that it was a down-right ordeal at times, but it was all worth it in the end.
Finding your passion and making it into a paying job requires a lot of hard work and sacrifice.
But it also means that you won’t risk discovering you wasted your entire life doing something that simply does not represent who you are.
Find what you love and let it consume you – Photo by Riccardo Bresciani
2. Choose a college major that actually pays
While this may be the complete opposite of the previous advice, parents agree that not all of them view work the same way.
Some might not be able to perform a job they are not passionate about for the rest of their lives, but others view work as a means to an end and prefer spending their paychecks doing the things they love.
The highest paying fields currently are accounting, computer technologies, healthcare and nursing and engineering.
If your child hasn’t found life’s passion, nor do they prefer any of the aforementioned fields of work?
Then you might want to help them explore the majors that can provide them with the job opportunities necessary for the lifestyle they want to pursue.
Again, don’t discount the value of College advice from parents.
3. Be careful with finances
Colleges are notoriously expensive.
You have to consider moving your kid in case their college of choice is in another town or state, tuition and textbook prices, administration and bureaucratic fees, as well as living expenses, food, amenities, etc.
Choosing a college, you simply cannot afford is one of the worst ideas, mainly due to student loans and the massive debt they turn into later in life.
Avoid student loans for as longs as you possibly can and only take debt you know will translate into a potential income.
Furthermore, teach them the value of money by having them pay for any failed classes themselves.
Be careful with finances – Photo by Miguel Á. Padriñán
4. Be resourceful
While it may be perfectly fine and understandable for children to rely on college advice from parent’s when going gets tough, it’s important to for them to learn to help themselves.
There are numerous resources available online such as the remarkable Griffith uni papers, or study notes made by college students for other college students.
One of the most appealing aspects of platforms such as these is that students are actively helping their peers go through college.
And also the fact that students can swap their notes for different ones or even earn a couple of bucks by sharing the fruits of their hard work and dedication.
Sending your kid off to college marks a whole new chapter in both yours and the lives of your children.
Instead of giving in to the pressure of the unknown, a much better idea would be to read into the testimonials of other parents and use their advice to turn this rather a stressful state of affairs into a fun and memorable experience.
Lastly, let your children make mistakes and learn from them. Sometimes, it’s the only way to get some things thought and into their stubborn young minds.
Our readers that enjoyed this article also liked An Experienced Mom’s Guide for sending Kids to College, Saving for Post-Secondary Education and How to Help your Children Develop Great Habits.