As exciting as college is for high school graduates, it’s terrifying for parents – especially when your child is the one who wants to dash across the country to another school.
For some, college is a chance to spread their wings as far and as wide as they can go. The chance to live in another state and meet entirely new people is exciting and can be life-changing, especially if you’re already from a small town. But, what if your teen isn’t sure what they want to do post-high school graduation? What if they have no idea the options available to them? What if going away to college is too daunting, too much to handle? This is the job for parents. You need to all sit down together and talk about the options ahead of them after high school and how those options can affect their choices in later life. College is an important stepping stone into an ideal career and if you harness their creativity and passion when they’re young, they’ll thank you for it later. So, what options are on the tablefor your teenager?
Okay, so obviously the first option out of high school is going to be college. Whether that’s studying in college thousands of miles away, or doing an online MBA program at home instead, college is the first and most preferable option. Finding work without a degree can be difficult and if your teenager has specific ideas of what they want from their future, it makes sense to walk them through college application time. They don’t have to go to the opposite end of the country when there are local community colleges and the option to study online at home.
Working right out of high school is an option that some take over going directly into college with their friends. This option may be a temporary one, but they could also secure a position at the bottom of a company doing an internship with the promise of progression through the ranks. It’s not a bad option to think about, especially if your teen needs a break from studying to earn money toward tuition.
A gap year between high school and college that is filled with places to see and things to do is a popular option among students. Some kids work their way through high school, saving every penny they make so that they can have an adventure around the world and gain some cultural experiences before they settle into their studies.
Whichever way your high-school graduate chooses to go, as a parent you must support their exploration of all the options and while you can help and guide, the decision cannot be yours. College is a time for growth, and not just for the kids.