College Preparation & Resources




Colleges and universities vary in terms of size, types of programs, and whether undergraduate and graduate courses are offered. There are public colleges administered by cities and states, as well as private colleges and universities. This chapter deals with three major college systems: CUNY – the City University of New York system of colleges and universities; SUNY – the State University of New York system of colleges and universities; and private colleges and universities.


The price of college varies by the type of program and school. Students have a range of public and private resources that can be used to help pay for college.

Summary of College Preparation & Resources

Preparing for college requires students to know what colleges are looking for in their applicants. This includes the student’s high school coursework, the types of extra-curricular activities the student is engaged in, and the results of standardized tests.

The application process differs from public colleges and universities to private institutions. Most public institutions require an application form, an application fee, high school transcript and SAT scores. Private institutions often request additional materials: recommendation letters, essays, interviews, and even, in the case of arts schools, auditions or portfolios, in order to understand their prospective students’ skills and interests.

Financial aid is the process of obtaining assistance with paying for college. Financial aid for college comes through grants, scholarships, student loans, and work-study.