As you’re aware, achieving your GED is a significant milestone. Your hard work, dedication, and prioritization have paid off, making it a tiring but immensely rewarding journey. Congratulations! Now, what comes next? For many recent GED recipients, the next item on their agenda is attending college. But how do you apply for college after getting a GED? While applying to college may seem daunting, it’s worth remembering that you felt the same way about the GED process. You successfully conquered that challenge, and you have the capacity to conquer this one as well. For more information about the benefits of getting your GED, read more here
Can You Go to College With a GED?
Can you go to college with a GED? Pursuing higher education provides a holistic learning experience, initiating your career and instilling valuable life lessons. In the current competitive environment, many colleges mandate a high school diploma or GED for admission. If high school completion is not feasible, obtaining a GED serves as an excellent alternative to pursue college. A GED certificate equips you with an educational foundation comparable to a high school diploma, positioning you for success in higher education. Numerous colleges and universities readily admit students with a GED, making it a beneficial avenue to initiate or progress in your educational endeavors.
Can the college acceptance be influenced by GED?
Why is GED Scores Requested by Colleges?
Colleges commonly request GED scores as part of the application process, making it necessary for applicants to submit GED completion information to their chosen schools. These scores are often used for appropriate course placement upon enrollment. The admissions committee evaluates GED scores differently than high school grades, and achieving high scores can sometimes lead to the waiver of specific admission requirements. Much like high school graduates, students with a GED diploma typically need to include their score reports when applying to colleges or universities. While some vocational and trade schools may not insist on a GED diploma, the majority of institutions do.
In general, GED scores play a crucial role in college enrollment, although exceptions exist for early entrance programs. In the United States, colleges have the discretion to determine the information they request from prospective students, and it is within their rights to inquire about GED completion if they wish to do so. In contrast, high school graduates are usually not asked for a copy of their diploma but are required to submit their complete transcript or academic record, showcasing grades earned over four years.
How to Apply for College After Getting Your GED
1. Research Colleges
Conduct thorough research on colleges that fit within your budget and are situated in a geographic location that suits your preferences. Conduct research on colleges that accept GED. Consider online programs as well, as they often offer the flexibility to take classes from anywhere in the country, and the costs are generally lower compared to attending in-person classes. An alternative worth exploring is the Accelerated Pathways Program, providing a non-traditional online college experience that allows you to earn a Bachelor’s degree with flexibility. Collaborate with an academic counselor to create a customized degree plan aligned with your goals, budget, and schedule. During your research, ensure that the schools offer your chosen major or minor, and investigate their program offerings and reputations. Check their alumni programs too, including the percentage of graduates who secure full-time employment in their chosen fields.
Considering your recent GED achievement, community college emerges as a viable option. Every two-year community college accepts students with GEDs, offering smaller class sizes for more personalized instruction at a lower cost. Community colleges often establish partnerships with state schools, allowing seamless transfers to participating four-year colleges or universities as a junior upon earning an associate degree. After compiling a list of colleges, verify if any out-of-state schools accept the GED from the state where you obtained it.
2. Reach Out to the Admissions Office of the College you Selected
Once you confirm that you meet the schools’ requirements, proceed to submit the required documentation, which typically includes:
- An application.
- An application fee or a fee waiver.
- A FAFSA form for federal grants and loans.
- Copies of your GED transcripts and standardized test scores.
- Proof of identity and residence.
- High school transcripts.
3. Write an Exceptional College Acceptance Request Essay
Many institutions often require a well-written essay from prospective students. Allocate ample time to create a detailed outline, ensuring a thorough exploration of your chosen topic. After completing the essay, seek feedback from a trusted teacher or professional for editing the final draft. Inspirational essays that chronicle personal triumphs over challenges tend to resonate effectively. While specific school requirements may vary, it is generally recommended that the essay falls within the range of 600-800 words. Consider framing the narrative around a personal story, particularly focusing on a recent accomplishment you have achieved. Read more.
4. Request Recommendation Letters
Requesting recommendation letters is a crucial step in the application process. Inform your chosen references about the deadline, ideally providing them with the final draft request a week or two in advance. It’s advisable to secure at least three references ahead of time. Consider reaching out to former teachers, employers, school counselors, instructors, or local leaders when seeking recommendations.
5. Seek Financial Assistance
Develop a spreadsheet detailing the tuition schedules and associated expenses for each college under consideration. Factor in potential financial aid options during this process. While creating your budget, inquire about fee waivers for each application, but include the fee amount in your allocated expenses as a precaution. Additionally, explore your eligibility for federal student aid as part of your comprehensive financial planning. How much does a GED cost?
6. Seek Scholarships
Discover the available scholarships tailored to your background, encompassing factors such as:
- Ethnic background
- Income bracket
- Sport of choice