UCLA. Belmont University. University of Alabama. These schools all have something in common; EC students have been accepted to all of these schools in the past few years. There’s another factor that brings them together-- they’re all far away from New Jersey. In spite of these exceptional college acceptances, and while EC students have the whole country at their fingertips, something draws them back to their home state to further their education.
There’s a trend towards EC students staying locally for college, and Mr. Ben Fuller provides information as to why this trend is occurring.
EC students have a strong pull towards local schools, typically in New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. “The top school in the last 4 years has been Ramapo, and then Montclair. If you add in one more year, last year, William Paterson was the top school. Those are our three local state schools, so they’re always battling for the top spot. But after that, it’s really a mix. There’s Calvin, there’s Penn State, there’s Liberty, Eastern, Fordham, NJIT-- so it really varies after that,” Mr. Fuller says.
So... How Do I Choose a College?
The college decision process may be easy for some, while for others it may be incredibly difficult due to various factors that contribute to the process. Some examples include but are not limited to: the size of the student body, location, academic programs, campus life, cost, diversity, retention and graduation rates. Everyone has a different perspective and we’re looking forward to seeing our seniors’ college decisions in the near future, however, because of said factors, some students are unfortunately forced to give up on their dreams. “There’s always a few every year who either they don’t realize the financial burden that they’re going to have for over four years and need to transfer to an in-state school or community college, or they don’t realize the finances involved in traveling back home, so there’s always a few who just get hit and don’t want to stay in financial debt,” Mr. Fuller mentions.
Despite this life hurdle, however, there is hope in terms of college retention rates in correlation to EC. Mr. Fuller maintains a bright perspective: “If you’re judging by the number of students who stay in school after their first year there, it’s incredibly high. 91% of our students stay at the college they committed to, and this is important especially in comparison to the national average of 66% or ⅓ of students that don’t end up transferring. I’d say a majority of students are happy with their final decision.”