So You’re Not Ready for College? Think About These Options.

Thinking about the future can be daunting for high school seniors and other young adults. If you’re anxious, stressed, or overwhelmed about upcoming life decisions, you’re not alone. 

Many young adults feel immense pressure from friends, family and society in general to go off to a four-year university. Although well meaning, people in your life can make you think that a college degree equals success. There is no one-size-fits-all pathway (or definition) for success.

Instead of allowing overwhelming feelings to hold you back from making important decisions, take the process one step at a time. First, think about the reasons why you aren’t ready for college.

Many young adults say they aren’t ready for college because:

  • They experience difficulty learning in academic settings or are not academically ready
  • They don’t feel prepared to be independent or lack life skills (time management, problem-solving, handling finances, making and eating nutritious meals, getting adequate sleep, etc.)
  • They experience low self-esteem and can’t see themselves being successful in the future
  • They are afraid of failing
  • They lack social skills and isolate themselves because they are unable to communicate with others
  • They don’t have a lot of money for college and don’t want to take on education debt
  • They experience social, emotional, or behavioral challenges including ADHD, OCD, anxiety, depression and disordered eating behaviors.

Whether you aren’t ready for college because of one reason or many reasons, it’s important to identify your reasons. Instead of going away to a four-year university, consider the following options:

Option 1: Enroll at a community college

If you are not academically ready for college, are unsure of what you want to study, or are interested in trade school, community college may be a good option. Community colleges generally accept students who have academic difficulty and are more affordable than most four-year colleges. You may finish community college and start your career or decide to transfer to a four-year university.

Option #2: Take a gap year

Spending time in a gap year program between high school and college may be a good option if you need to build your skillset or save money. You can take a semester (or more) away from school to travel, volunteer, or work on the areas of your life that keep you from being ready for college (see option #3). Your mindset and direction will likely evolve during your time away from school. As you gain insight into your passions and goals, your unique pathway will unfold.

Option #3: Attend Skyterra Embrace, a therapeutic program for young women

If you want to work on the areas of your life that keep you from being ready for college, Skyterra Embrace may be the best option.

Skyterra Embrace is an individualized therapeutic program that uses a wellness model to guide young adult women ages 18-29 toward a more positive relationship with themselves. At Embrace, you’ll work to live fully and find self-worth as you discover who you want to become. Embrace will empower you to thrive in independence through a consistent routine, prioritizing mental health, healthy relationships and adventure. You’ll be able to focus on your personal growth, including college and career preparation, leadership development, finances and budgeting, and much more!

For more information about Skyterra Embrace, click here.

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Jennifer is the Clinical Director at Embrace. She has extensive training in various yoga practices and enjoys adventure. For more information on Embrace, click here.