The College Process: Where Do I Begin?

Categories: News

Brie Juran

By Brie Juran, Career Coach and Program Manager

When applying to college, there are many details to consider that can make the process challenging and stressful. It’s easy to lose perspective and get lost when options seem to be bombarding you from every angle. To help you feel more confident with this, I’ve come up with four categories to consider when you start thinking about your college career.

Your Future Career: The main purpose of college is to prepare you for your future career. It’s important you put effort into exploring what you’re interested in. Keep in mind, certain colleges may be better for specific programs, majors, and careers than others, so it’s beneficial to integrate this knowledge into your process. If you’re not sure what you want to do, that’s okay. Many students aren’t sure what they want to do, but there are assessments and coaching tools that can help you decide on your career path.

The College Experience: This is a broad topic that covers a lot of ground. Are you looking for a large school or a small school? Close to home? Or far away? What is the average class size? Are there study abroad opportunities and travel programs? What about athletics, or research opportunities? The list goes on. It’s good for you to know what you’re looking for in your college experience, as you will want to carefully consider this when choosing a school.

College Financing: A college degree can be expensive, and getting an education should not leave you financially ruined. It is imperative that your school of choice be within your financial means. And keep in mind the ratio of your debt versus your post-degree earning potential. Be sure to check out what assistance you’re eligible for. There are federal, state, school, and even local scholarships (such as the HILB scholarship administered through JVS Career Services) that can help minimize your financial burden.

Making a Decision That’s Right for YOU: You may be feeling pressure from family or friends to attend a certain school, but this is your experience, not theirs. When looking at schools, keep in mind:  

  • What are the outside influences that are guiding my decision?
  • Will this school help me achieve my goals?
  • What are my “whys” and do all my thoughts align?
  • Does this feel right for me?

A healthy combination of planning and open-mindedness will lay the foundation for successfully transitioning into your college career. There is no “right answer”; many colleges can provide you with a great education and a memorable experience. Preparation and exploration are important, just don’t get bogged down in minutia. These guidelines are a general map to help you make an informed decision.


For more information about how JVS Career Services can help you with your college application process, please contact Brie Juran at (513) 745-2907 or email


Brie Juran, Career Coach and Program Manager of JVS Career services, is a Florida native with strong family ties to Cincinnati and comes to JVS Career Services with a multitude of skills. Along with her sales and management experience, Brie will be using her networking expertise to enhance business development and client relationships. Brie obtained her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from the University of Maryland, and then went on to earn her Culinary Arts Certificate from L’Academie de Cuisine, a culinary school outside of Washington D.C. Subsequently, she worked in the food industry and returned to her Alma Mater to head the Admissions Department. Her time in this role enabled her to share her experience and inspire others to change careers and pursue what they love.

As in her previous position, Brie is passionate about the services and resources JVSCS is able to provide to assist job seekers in various stages of their careers as well as businesses with hiring needs. She has an energetic approach to engage community members and looks forward to contributing to the growth of the young adult professional community in Cincinnati. As a recent transplant from D.C., Brie is enthusiastic about connecting with others and in turn, facilitating their connection with JVSCS to find their place in the community through their careers.