Ten tips for Nigerian students wishing to attend College and University in the US.
1) Check Application Deadlines.
The application deadlines vary greatly among the universities, but application deadlines for the fall semester can range from as early as November the previous year to late spring, mere months before the start of the school year.
2) Start the Application Process Early.
Most of the schools require either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) to test your English proficiency skills. Allow time to study for the exam and for the test results to reach the schools before the application deadline. Other submission requirements include an official transcript from your high school(if going for undergraduate programme) or university(if going for post graduate program), a bank statement showing you have sufficient money to finance your studies and, possibly, letters of recommendation from teachers.
3) Use Study Guides.
Ordering a study guide before taking the TOEFL or the IELTS is a good investment. This guide will assist you in adequate preparation for the English Language proficiency test. Even an online prep guide can help. There are also study guides for the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) and American College Testing (ACT), although not all colleges require you to take either of these tests.
4) Practice Your English Skills.
Read American newspapers, magazines (other than the gossip magazines), and books to get a feel for the American-English language. Listen to audio books by American authors. Next time you watch an American movie, try to ignore the subtitles.
5) Participate in Extracurricular Activities
(Activities Other Than Academic Ones).
It is not just your grades that matter when you are being considered for admission to college in the United States. Sports, music, volunteer work, religious involvement, social clubs, public speaking, travel experiences, etc. all show your talents and your engagement outside of the classroom. These kinds of activities will strengthen your application.
6) Don’t Limit Your Choices to the Obvious Schools.
College in the United States is more than Ivy League and schools in California, Hawaii, Florida, and New York City. There are over 4,500 higher education institutions in the USA, and many schools offer high quality education. Do not limit your choices to only the schools you know from movies, media, and friends. The United States is a vast country with a wide range of choices of universities.
7) Realize that Details Matter.
Failing to complete every section of your application will likely cause it be held up during the acceptance process. Even though it is a worst care scenario, small omissions and mistakes can keep you from being accepted to the school of your choice. Read every section of the application carefully and follow the instructions exactly.
8) Look for Stipends/Scholarship/ Student Loans.
Go through the schools’ websites, you will see options of acquiring stipends and student loans. Also, be on the look out for scholarships announcements.
9) Student Visa Acquisition
For you to be allowed to enter the United States for study purpose, you will need a valid passport from the Federal Republic of Nigeria and a visa from the government of the United States. The American Embassy in Nigeria will issue a student visa for you, but only after you have officially been accepted to a college or university. Follow the instructions from the American Embassy closely. It will increase your chances of getting the visa quickly.
10) Adequate Preparation for Studies Abroad
Once you are accepted to a school, you will embark on a journey, which for many students is a life changing experience. You can look forward to the unique American experience of living on a college campus, meeting interesting people, joining college organizations, playing various sports, and enjoying different foods. It is hard to describe unless you have actually lived it yourself.
Following the basic steps listed above is a sure way to get admitted into United States of America as an international student. Stay with us as we bring you more information about study in America and friendlier European countries.
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