Namibian students who were recently accepted at institutions of higher learning in foreign countries decided to have a 101 session where they enlightened prospective students on how to apply to such institutions.
Facilitated by former Youth Corner contributor Mavis Elias and six other students, the webinar focused on an array of topics that students should bear in mind when applying to institutions abroad.
Bertha Tobias said it is very important to differentiate between a college and university from a USA academic context. “A university is one which offers a graduate or a master’s programme whereas the college is one which offers an undergraduate programme. That means if I would be going to Harvard, I would be going to Harvard College and not the university because I am currently pursuing an undergraduate. This is something which is overlooked,” she mentioned.
She highlighted the distinction between early decision applications and regular decision applications. “You only get one early decision application and this is your first choice – what that means is that you will have early deadlines for that school and much earlier time frames,” she stated.
Tobias also mentioned that the common application is an undergraduate college admission application that applicants may use to apply to any of more than 800 member colleges and universities in 49 states and the District of Columbia, as well as in Canada, China, Japan, and many European countries.
Most application processes require fees but she applied for free when she provided reasons to the institutions for not affording the paying of fees.
“The fees are strictly used to cover the cost of the selection and admission process. Since looking over your application costs the university money, the cost is passed on to the student. Some schools tend to charge applications to ensure that only students who are serious about attending the school will apply,” hinted Tobias.
Theopolina Kapani, currently in the UK at Imperial College London, said it is vital for prospective students to carefully establish or decide where they want to study and to avoid common mistakes. Kapani said is it important to provide sufficient information about previous qualifications, state the original name of the qualification obtained and to use professional bodies to translate qualifications.
Elias said the reason for having such a webinar was to share application experiences and to have a true conversation surrounding the difficulties students face when busy with applications.