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Which Greensboro Area College is Right for You?

August 23, 2011

Aaah, the start of the school year, so full of potential! 6th graders looking forward to meeting new friends, 4th graders looking forward to learning fractions (it could happen), Juniors looking forward to driving to school, and seniors considering the possibility of that whole new world of college.  That last bit is what catches my mind this fine morning.

Guilford County seniors are starting to think about college and consider their options. So we did a little bit of homework to help them out. Below are the schools Greensboro area grads frequently attend, along with some of the key statistics that go along with them. This list is by no means exhaustive, so don’t get upset, our alma maters aren’t on the list either. And this is in NO PARTICULAR ORDER.

Greensboro College Chart

Let me explain:

GPA: This is weighted GPA, if we couldn’t find weighted GPA, or we are unsure what the school was reporting, we didn’t list it. Keep in mind, that for weighted GPA’s, getting a B in an AP course earns you more than a B in a regular course, so choose your courses carefully.

Average SAT and ACT: This is roughly the average score of the students admitted to the various schools. If your scores aren’t quite up to par, try taking a good SAT prep course. Most courses can give you a point bump, depending on how much work you put in to it after class. Many students do better on the ACT than the SAT, and that nearly every school in the country will take an ACT score in lieu of an SAT score. This is why we’d recommend that all students take both exams and submit the better of the two scores to their schools.  Please note these are the 50% or median scores, NOT the minimum scores, so getting a 1700 doesn’t prevent you from getting admitted to NC State or Appalachian. Nor does getting an 1800 guarantee you a spot at either.  Pretty much all schools, require you to take the SAT OR the ACT, with Wake Forest as more of the exception than the rule.  So if college is in your future, so is a standardized test.

Tuition: An estimate of room, board, and tuition for and NC resident  to live on campus and attend the school in question for one year.

% of Students Admitted: Of all the students applying, what % gets admitted to this school.  The lower this number, the stronger your application will need to be and the more you’ll want to exceed the averages for that school.

Deadline: The last day you could submit an application to be admitted next fall. Please note these dates may be subject to change, this might be LAST years date, we’re going with what the school has on their website as of writing. You have until early spring to apply to most schools, but PLEASE don’t wait until the 11th hour. All else being equal, schools prefer to see proactive students who submit their applications early. Besides, most schools have an early admissions process that allows you to submit early, and get your response early. Wouldn’t it be nice to not have to live on pins and needles until spring? Apply early, really.

Conclusions:

Local high school seniors can use this information to calibrate their plans. Schools don’t make a decision based on only one factor, but a weak test score or GPA is a detriment that will need to be countered elsewhere on your application. Remember, averages are only averages, half the students admitted have numbers below the average, so don’t abandon all hope if one of your numbers is a bit low.

If your GPA isn’t quite what you’d like, you might be well off to consider spending some time preparing to get a great score on the SAT and/or ACT. Again, most students would be better off taking BOTH tests. The SAT tends to focus more on critical thinking, while the ACT tends to focus more on knowledge levels. So most students naturally will do better on one than the other. And, most schools in the Greensboro area will take either exam; use that to your advantage.

On the tuition front, it might be a good time to consider funding. We’ll discuss funding shortly in another article, but scholarships and student loans are available. Parents and students would benefit from a brief frank discussion of how much help parents can offer a student going off to college.

For those earlier in your academic career, please give this a look as you consider your future. A little extra effort put in to make sure you have a strong GPA can go a long way to making college applications less stressful. Likewise, there are great tutors in Greensboro that would be happy to help you bolster your GPA and test scores. This is really one of those areas where an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.

Want to know the numbers for a school you don’t see here? Google them! Every school has tons of data on the web for prospective students. If the school is being a bit shy about its numbers, try collegeapps.about.com, this was one of the sources for this article, when the college filed its numbers somewhere we couldn’t find on its website.

See for yourself:

UNC-Chapel Hill
NC State
Appalachian State U
NC A&T
UNC-Charlotte
UNC-Greensboro
Duke University
Wake Forest University
2 Comments
  1. Nic permalink

    Good Homework, nice work

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