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We recently sat down with a current high school senior to talk about her plans after graduation. Here’s what she said:
Name: Zaria Simone Ford
Age 18 Years Old
Hometown: Greenville, MS
Plans after graduation: After graduation, I plan to attend Mississippi State University, where I will major in Biochemistry with a pre-dental concentration.
Career goals: I plan to become a Pediatric Dentist
Why do you want to go to college? I want to attend college because I know that a college degree is one of the most important keys to having a successful career. There are very few good-paying jobs that do not require a degree. I know that obtaining a degree will only widen the opportunities that are available to me.
Who inspired you to go to college? I honestly don’t think anyone inspired me to want to attend college. It was sort of a self-motivated decision—almost as if there were no other options. I knew what I wanted in life and I know that, in order to make it happen, I had to go to college.
Are you receiving college scholarships and other financial aid? Scholarships, financial aid, and the grace of God are literally the only things that are making it possible for me to attend college.
What are you most excited about? I’m most excited about the college experience in general. Not only the general college experience, but the Mississippi State college experience. I know that it is a college like no other. I can’t wait to attend football and basketball games and become very involved in campus life.
What are you most nervous about?
I am most nervous about simply being out on my own. Deep inside, I know that I’m ready and it’s nothing I can’t handle; however, when I think about it, it is a drastic change that I have to adapt to.
How do you think a college degree will impact you?
A college degree will be highly beneficial to me simply because of the profession I plan to go into. Of course any dentist must first obtain a bachelor’s degree; therefore, obtaining a degree will complete my first step toward my career.
Did anyone help you with the college process?
Get2College has been a great resources during my college process. My FAFSA was filled out and completed with ease thanks to them. I know that I could always contact Tori or Danny if I needed help with anything or had any questions. My mom has also been beneficial to the process by trying to keep me on track and ensuring that I’ve done everything that is needed, even though I am always two steps ahead.
What advice to you have for other students who are thinking about going to college?
The best advice I can give is to apply for scholarships! Regardless of the dollar amount or essay length, if you are eligible, apply for it! It’s free money, but you have to be willing to put in the work to apply and do the essays and whatever else is required.
I would also suggest that students take the ACT as early as possible and as many times as they feel necessary. This ways, you aren’t at the end of your senior year stressing out because you are still trying to get your desired score. I had to learn that even if you don’t make the score that you desire, it is not the end of the world because not all scholarships are based on ACT scores.