Students visit colleges to explore future options

By: 
ALEXIA HILL, Apollo High School Journalism Student

Photo by Alexia Hill

Students Tessa Livingstone, Salina Nguyen, Melanie Rivera, and Priscilla Rodriguez receive tips about college while visiting University of Arizona.

For some students, high school will consist of a social life, being out late and possibly getting into trouble. For others, it will be all about school, honors and advanced classes, and extracurricular activities. Regardless of what high school means to any student reading this, the four years of high school go by extremely fast, and many don’t think about what they are going to do after graduation.
It is so important to begin thinking about college and which college may be the right school for an individual. Luckily, Apollo has multiple college field trips each school year to help students begin contemplating schools and careers, and Michael Hebert, the college and career specialist, elaborates on this.  
“There are four field trips every year to each of the major universities, to Grand Canyon University, University of Arizona, Northern Arizona University, and Arizona State University,” Hebert said.
However, a limited number of people are permitted to go on these college field trips. This could be another way to ensure students’ grades are good enough to even go to the school he/she is going to see.
“Any junior or senior can go on these trips as long as they have a 2.75 GPA or higher,” Hebert said.
The trips can be extremely beneficial to those who want to stay in state. Hebert explained the purpose of the trips and why they are so critical to attend.
“(The purpose of these trips) is for students to be able to get out and explore different opportunities that they can have for after high school, especially up to NAU and U of A, since they are a little bit farther away from home,” Hebert said. “I think it’s important for students to get the feel of and experience the different styles of living at each one.”
It makes the most sense for only upperclassmen to go on field trips like this, as they get the most out of it and tend to find it just as helpful as the college and career specialist would hope.
“I’ve been on one college field trip with the school and one with my family,” senior Viviana Alanís said. “I really liked NAU, so I applied and got accepted, but I also really like a college in Iowa that I’m going to go visit. The trips are nice because I have been to NAU, but some of my friends haven’t and they got the chance to see new campuses, as well as get a feel for what life is like outside of Phoenix.”
College is a vital stepping stone in becoming an adult and beginning a new life of independence. It helps with budgeting, time management, and much more. Furthermore, to have any type of well-paying and interesting career, college is a necessity and many students do not always realize that.
“Like everything, some students take these trips for granted. Some students you can tell just take them for the day off, but the majority of students use it as a learning opportunity in trying to see if that’s what they want to do next year,” Hebert said. “From my experience, going to college or some form of learning is crucial now just because job experience doesn’t have that much weight compared to a degree or even certificate. That degree or certificate somewhat acts as a safety net in life for you.”
Sometimes, scheduling a college tour personally can become difficult or scary, and most students will procrastinate to do so until they forget. That is why it is important to go on the trips and sign up when they are first announced.
“A lot of seniors think they have plenty of time left to think about the future, but graduation is getting closer by the day,” senior Janet Rodriguez said. “I thought a lot of seniors would have gone on the NAU field trip, but they didn’t.”
Alanís shared some advice for underclassmen who will very soon be able to go on those field trips.
“You should definitely go on the tours. A lot of students miss the opportunity, so go when you get the chance,” Alanís said.
 

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