There comes a time in many parents’ lives that they must face their child going to college. While plenty of parents worry about empty nest syndrome, there’s a whole other factor to consider in helping your child to pick a college that will give them the best college experience. After all, where your kid will spend the next four years of their lives will greatly influence their future and who they end up becoming. As such, there are a few things to consider while helping your child make the right choice for them.

Consider Finances

The biggest factor to consider is the financial aspect of college. There’s tuition, room and board, plus all of the other fees that come up with college life, such as living expenses and those pricey textbooks. To take the load off your child’s shoulders, consider taking out a low-rate private parent loan to help pay for their education. As an individual with a longer credit history and more financial stability, you are more likely to get a better loan rate than your child. Your child also won’t have to worry about making immediate repayments upon graduation.

Think About the Location

Location can end up making an enormous difference in a college student’s experience. While many students decide to study close to home to be near family, others enjoy the thought of moving far away. There’s also the big city versus small town life to think about, as well as weather and ease of transportation. Discusses these considerations with your child, weighing the pros and cons of each.

Assess Academic Opportunities

Some students have an exact idea for a college major they want to pursue, while others remain unsure. Either way, spend some time looking into the college courses offered for majors they are thinking about and the quality of teaching and research facilities. You can also look into minors if they’re interested in more than just one area of study. Show them that they can follow different paths, there are ways to turn hobbies into careers that they might not even realize are options. Lastly, look into study abroad programs if your child is interested in traveling down the line.

Research Professional Opportunities

Besides academic opportunities, it’s also essential to think about professional opportunities. You and your child can look into the job market for various professions related to the educational field they are interested in pursuing. Not only will this give them a better idea of career options, but it will also shed insight into the best opportunities for them down the line, as well as salary expectations. Going in armed with this information will give them a good idea of what they’re getting into.

Remember, It’s Up to Your Child

In the end, remember that it’s ultimately up to your child. Choosing the right college can be stressful and often takes a good amount of research and deep thought to avoid making mistakes, but your child should end up being the one to decide where to go. The best thing you can do is be supportive of their choice and remember that they are always just a phone call away.