Factor 2: Can I Get Out?
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Collegize Weekly Activity:
Review the 4-year graduation rate for every college in your Favorites. Remove those colleges whose 4-year graduation rate falls below your comfort level.
“Can I Get Out” is the second most important question that can be asked about a best-fit college because graduation is the ultimate goal of attending any college. Thousands of college students drop out every year. Those students have to then start paying back student loans for a degree that they do not have. Each students who drops out and has to repay student loans would have been better had they sought employment or a trade rather than college.
When looking at the Can I Get Out? factor, you should be most concerned about the 4-year graduation rate. Graduating from college with a Bachelors is typically a 4-year process. Like high school, students are expected to be freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. However, students in the United States typically take 6 years to graduate with a Bachelors so colleges will show their 6-year graduation rate instead of their 4-year rate to seem like students who attend graduate at a higher rate than they do. There are colleges who are in the business of making money, so they will admit students, give them a huge loan, but not provide the support needed to graduate.
Did you know there are colleges that graduate less than 40% of its students in 4 years? There are many colleges whose 4-year graduation rate is between 5% and 10%. Colleges have very low 4-year graduation rates for 3 main reasons; either the colleges have a campus culture that students do not like so undergrads transfer out, the colleges do not provide students with the resources needed to be academically successful, or the colleges give students and families so much student loan debt that students can not afford to re-enroll for another semester. Whatever the reason, be wary of colleges with low 4-year graduation rates.