Bentley University: A Campus Tour with Campus Bound

“Our campus is layered like a cake.”  This was one of the first things that was explained to my colleague, Jackie Woodson, and me on our recent tour of Bentley University. Our tour guide went on to specify that Bentley’s academics make up the first layer, which is situated on the top of a beautiful hill in Waltham, MA. As you descend to the next “layer,” you will find all things student life, and at the bottom of the hill, you will find Bentley’s athletic facilities. As we walked up the hill at the end of our tour (Bentley students clearly have some nice exercise baked into their days), I couldn’t help but apply the cake metaphor to the larger process of meaningful college exploration.  

In a sea of hundreds of excellent schools, how are you supposed to identify approximately ten that will match you the best? Well, try approaching your college search through the lens of Bentley’s layers! 

The first thing that you can assess is your academic and professional goals. Do you have a specific academic program in mind, or are you interested in several different academic areas? In addition to majors, how best do you learn? Do you want small classes or are you intrigued by the idea of a larger lecture-style class? What other academic aspects are important – co-ops, study abroad, research, tutoring? These are among the many ingredients that can create a successful first layer of your college search process. 

While college is primarily about academics, it is also your home for four formative years. You want to make sure that you have access to the things that are going to help you grow into a happy successful adult. What matters to you – size, location, access to a city, allergy friendly food options?  For many students, being able to pay for college and not fall into debt is a vital part of the search that needs to be examined early in the process.  Does your family have a budget?  Do you know if you will qualify for merit scholarships or need-based grants?  Student life is unique to every student and these are just some of the many flavors to consider as part of your ideal college cake.  

The last layer at Bentley was athletics. Unless you know (and believe me, you would know) that you are being recruited, sports should be among your final considerations during your college search. Whether you want to be in the stands cheering on a specific college team, or want access to a certain club sport, athletics is a great example of a cherry on top of your college search.       

One of the best pieces of my job is helping students identify their priorities and preferences, then determine which colleges best meet those goals. While it can be daunting, I always aim for a process that yields self discovery and builds confidence. While college is a much larger decision than choosing a dessert, remember to approach it similarly in the sense that it is YOUR decision. Choose the dessert with the flavor palette that is most pleasing to you as an individual. This is your choice. Make it a delicious one.

If you are interested in setting up a complimentary consultation with Jen or another member of our seasoned team to help you with the college search, please click here.   

You May Also Like…