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Finding the right college can sometimes be a daunting process. Choosing a college or university that will help students achieve their academic and personal goals, while also ensuring they can gain a valuable experience, especially in a pandemic, is a challenge in itself.

For high school senior Ryan Pounds in Los Angeles, he remembers feeling overwhelmed.

“I was nervous to complete all of the applications, especially since our counselor usually helps us with it in person. So it’s been left up to ourselves to figure out the process.”

Sounds stressful, right? The good news is that it doesn't have to be.

Many students go into the college application process with those same nerves. Nerves about the amount of time it’s going to take, all the information they need to gather, and even if they’ll be accepted to any college.

Luckily, their chances are high. According to the Pew Research Center, the majority of U.S. colleges and universities admit most students who apply. Pew surveyed 1,364 four-year colleges and universities, and found that “more than half of the schools in our sample (53.3%) admitted two-thirds or more of their applicants in 2017, including such well-known names as St. John’s University in New York (67.7%), Virginia Tech (70.1%), Quinnipiac University (73.9%), the University of Missouri at Columbia (78.1%) and George Mason University (81.3%).”

“If I could give one piece of advice to students going through the application process, it would be to not only look at schools that your friends are looking at. Don’t try and follow your friends. Take the time to research schools to see where you might best fit.”

Ryan Pounds, High School Senior

Ryan also emphasized that where you choose to go to school is so important. “If I could give one piece of advice to students going through the application process, it would be to not only look at schools that your friends are looking at. Don’t try and follow your friends. Take the time to research schools to see where you might best fit.”

Common App offers over 900 colleges and universities to apply to, meaning there is almost certainly a good fit for every student. Our Explore Colleges page allows students to explore over 900 institutions, including more than 60 international institutions. 

Explore Colleges gives you the opportunity to search for colleges based on campus location, test optional, public or private and other key factors in helping with evaluating an institution. Over 300 of the institutions have a virtual tour available giving a student the feel for the institution from the comfort of their internet connection.

Ryan is just one of the many seniors that utilized the Explore Colleges page. “I used the Common App website to learn more about the schools I was applying to,” he said. “It was very helpful knowing that it’s a trusted source and it gave me comfort in knowing that the information on requirements was correct.” 

Ryan’s experience is similar to the over 1 million applicants who use Common App each year. The college application process can be daunting, but remember that your friends at Common App are here to help you every step of the way.