It took me 14 years to graduate college. Keep in mind, I skipped a grade in school, attended a Technology Magnet program for 7 years, took all A.P. classes, graduated high school with honors, entered college at 16, and still screwed it up. From getting on Academic Probation, to being expelled, to going to 2 other colleges, returning to my original college, and finally graduating at 30 years old, I can give you the RoadMap to avoid every mistake I made.
Too often, students enter college without knowing that it's a minefield of twists and turns, waiting to swallow up the ones that don't know it's a battlefield. College is not for the weak. The workforce is not for the weak. I was lucky to work right out of high school, and joined corporate America, sooner than most kids my age. I got to see the finish line, and I wasn't even close to prepared for adult life. I worked at a downtown business for 2 years, until I got fired, then worked at a law school for 5 years with over 100 lawyers. I got to see what the "Real World" looked like.
School was not my priority. My first 2 grades in college were F's. I just didn't care. I didn't realize that by choosing to work instead of taking school seriously, I cheated myself out of $500,000. I could've made $50,000 out of college, and if you multiply that by 10 extra years that I spend playing around, that's a huge loss, and a long way to learn a lesson. I barely made 20,000 a year, sometimes less than that as a waitress. Most of my friends were underachievers too, which made me feel comfortable. I put in many hours at the bar and nightclub, further reducing my tiny salary, and I didn't save a dime.
You can't know where you are, if you don't know where you're going. This chapter explores how much a student knows about where their future career is headed. College is the beginning of their career.
Numbers, schnumbers. If students don't take a look at the cost of tuition today, they'll be surprised in a few years when it spikes up. Saving for college is something that needs to happen on the parent side, and the child side.
The college you want, may not be the college you need. It also may not be in the best interest for you in the long term. In this section, we discover what each college requires, and how to achieve that before it's too late.
School records are the gatekeepers of the college experience. Without those records, the college doesn't know who you are, what you've done, and what you're likely to do. Teacher Recommendations are golden, if you can think about that on the first day of high school. Glowing recommendations carry a lot of weight in the application process.
Does the college deserve your admission? You need to look at what they have to offer you, as well as, what you can add to the student body. Is there enough diversity in the demographic makeup of your school? What is the culture? Who graduates?
Do you actually need a car? What does it cost to have a car? Who is going to pay for it. These are questions that need to be answered while you're still walking.
Apps are a gigantic distraction. They can hinder you from making money in the future, by costing you precious time and money now. Is a phone even necessary? These are decisions that a kid can still make. Adults go to college. Adults graduate college. Kids make decisions that they will pay for for a while ... as adults.
If you plan to succeed, you will. This section will teach you how to plan for graduation, the workforce, and a bright financial future. It starts with how you approach the college experience. Is it Party Time or Build Time, you decide.
People that have mentors tend to go farther. Even people on the Billionaire's List had and still have mentors. Mentors are tour guides through life. They can help you navigate unknown waters, and arrive at your destination quicker and with less pain.
Clubs and Organizations that further your career or crucial, but social clubs can hold up your education. Partying and staying out late or not hallmarks of a top student. One must evaluate what the benefits and liabilities of joining clubs or organizations, in the long run. Students will receive a risk reward scale that they must balance.
If a student doesn't know what they want to do yet as a career? Great! That means they are open to all possibilities. However, in due time, they would need to narrow their focus and decide which road to take. The clearer the vision, the clearer the path to get there, and also which map to use.
After college, you're going to have an interview for your career. You must know how to interview before that day. What is the appropriate attire for your position? What are the interviewers expecting? How can you be disqualified from your first impression alone. Social media has gotten people fired before they were ever hired. There's some cleanup that needs to be done. This section will help you see that.
The Real World is a different being from college life. When those bills start coming in, it's Game On. There is no manual for adulthood. You have to hit the ground running, or get run over. This area of the book will question just how much you know about life after school. You will get caught up to speed.
Now that we've traveled into the future, here is a trip back to school. What is your current school life situation. How will it affect how you see the world, and how you approach your career? It may not seem relevant, but if you hold onto things from your past, they will contaminate your future.
Do you have the right personality for your career choice? Are there things you need to change to make sure you succeed. This section does some introspection, a talk with the man in the mirror. Self-reflection usually comes later in life, after many trials and consequences. We can skip some of that by looking internally now.
This is a blank Checklist, that allows you to add items on the list that you want to accomplish, by assigning due dates. Be your own accountability partner. It also helps you keep track of how close you are to achieving your most pressing goal, which is to get admitted into a college.
She is an educator, business owner, Life Coach, and a philosophical writer. She has written many books on biochemistry, psychology, metaphysics, and quantum physics. She lives in South Florida, and has been a vegan for 16 years.
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