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Can a College Bound Network Improve College Dropout Rates?

College dropout rates are big news these day because they’re high and just seem to be getting higher. A recent study showed that only 54% of students who entered a four-year university in 1997 had an actual degree within six years! Many students blame financial pressure for dropping out of school, but some schools with similar price tags have widely different dropout rates.

One thing that might improve college dropout rates is a college bound network for students in high schools who are getting ready to go into college. A college bound network can be made up of local high school students getting ready to go to college or of online resources that connect students from across the country who are getting ready for college. Such a network might be able to help improve college dropout and non-graduation rates in several ways.

College Dropout Rates Due to Money

The number one reason, it seems, that students leave college is because of money problems. They can’t pay, and they can just feel the debt mounting up. With job prospects looking slim in some fields, students just don’t think the extra semesters of college – and of debt – are worth their while.

Luckily, there are many college bound networks out there that can help disseminate information on financial aid and local scholarship opportunities. There are literally hundreds of thousands of scholarships available to college students these days, many from obscure or local organizations. It definitely pays to be connected to a network that can allow students to get access to the information about these scholarships.

The great part about many of the obscure scholarships is that they have a blend of merit-based, essay-based, and need-based scholarships available. This means students from all walks of life and all academic backgrounds can get more money for college by applying widely for scholarships, and students who get scholarships are less likely to drop out of college later on.

College Bound Networks Can Help with Deciding a Major

Only 57% of students at a four-year institution finish their degree in six years or less. Some never finish at all, and the longer they’re in school, the less likely they are to finish. One reason that students take so long to get through school is that they have difficulty deciding on a major. Students in a college bound network that gets them information about different majors are more likely to choose one that’s right for them. Plus, college bound networks can get students information on things like career options for different majors, since career options for each major are sometimes obscure or surprising.

Immediate College Enrollment Can Deter College Dropout Rates

Statistics say that students who go right to college are more likely to enter and complete college. A college bound network for high school students can give students tips on how to get connected with colleges, how to apply, and how to choose a school. All these things add up to make students more likely to enter college right away, rather than waiting a year or more after high school to enter college.

Also, a college bound network of like minded students can simply get students more excited about going to college and all the possibilities it offers. This means students may be more likely to enter college knowing that they’re likely to succeed, which can boost their chances at graduation.

Having a college bound network of peers and adults who can help students succeed in college is vital to boosting college graduation rates, and it all starts at the high school level. Students should be involved with friends and peers who are also going to college, and they should have access to great college information from guidance counselors and other trusted adults.

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