myUsearch blog

Honest college information — choose, apply, get into and pay for college.

How to Begin Your Scholarship Search

October 14, 2009 By: Julie Manhan Category: Aid for College, Finding a scholarship

Every year, at countless high school graduation ceremonies, you hear or read the names of scholarships the graduating class has been awarded.  It’s important to keep in mind that behind each of those awards are a student commitment, a well done application, and the ever-important scholarship search.  The latter is where many students find themselves in uncharted waters.


Photo by Steve Wampler

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Going Away to College: Will You Be Homesick?

October 12, 2009 By: Taylor Garrett Category: Campus Life

It’s the third week of freshman year, and my sister’s roommate has spent the last week and a half at home. When I was a freshman, I saw the same thing happen to so many of the people I knew. They drop out, either permanently or for only a few days, and head home to their bed and their parents. When going away to college, the most important thing to remember is that first semester of freshman year is the hardest college will ever get for you.


Homesick photo by Casey West 

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Ranking the US College Rankings

October 09, 2009 By: Brady Norvall Category: Choosing a College, US College rankings

I was just reading an article this morning about women’s professional tennis and the flaws in its ranking system. This time of year, I also see weekly reviews with different people giving their opinion about the various ranking systems in college football. There are computer programs that use data analysis, coaches votes, win/loss and strength-of-schedule ranking systems, and different ranking systems based on the weight of each different criteria. Honestly, I find it to be a bit of overkill. But, what about US college rankings? So how do the US college ranking systems work? Which US college ranking organization is most reliable? Read the rest of this entry →

Shaping Your Application Essay to Maximize Success

October 07, 2009 By: Elizabeth Kraus Category: Admissions insider, College application essays, Get into College

Today we have a guest post from college admissions insider Gil Rogers, Associate Director of Admissions at the University of New Haven.

 So you are getting ready to finalize those college applications.  You have visited schools, met with counselors and students, read through every piece of mail sent to you and surfed on all of the best college search websites.  You are ready to go, right?  Wrong.

Filling out the application form is easy.  As long as you know your name and address, chances are, that part is done.  But what are you going to do to set yourself apart from all of the names and numbers on the papers going in to the admissions office at your top choice school?  That is where the application essay comes in.


Photo by Valeriana Solaris 

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Greek Life: What is it Really Like?

October 05, 2009 By: Kate Scozzaro Category: Campus Life, Greek life

When you’re a freshman walking onto a new campus, you have tons of new opportunities that await you. Like high school, you have your friends, your sports teams and your school work but what high schools don’t have is Greek Life. Many schools have a bunch of different sororities and fraternities to pick from. Although I am not involved in Greek Life at URI, I considered rushing when I was a freshman.



 Greek Life Photo by Chiara Mara 

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College Major of the Week: Homeland Security Programs

October 01, 2009 By: Taylor Garrett Category: College Major Info, Homeland security programs

Lions, tigers, bears, hurricanes, swine flu, terrorists! Hopefully these aren’t things you encountered on your most recent trip to the zoo. But if you did, a degree in homeland security sure would come in handy…

A degree in homeland security is for those of you dreaming to protect our nation in any capacity—from natural disasters to terrorist threats, border patrol agents to computer programmers. Homeland security degrees can be applied any job that requires anticipation and intelligent action to minimize our nation’s vulnerabilities and protect the systems that ensure our American way of life. Such jobs exist in all fifty states, and on all surfaces of the planet.

Homeland Security Programs

 Homeland Security Photo by First Assembly of God

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Types of Degrees: A Simple Guide to College Degrees

September 29, 2009 By: Lynn Mattoon Category: Choosing a College, Types of degrees

You’re planning to continue your education beyond high school and perhaps you’re a little confused about which degree is right for you and your career goals. This post aims to give a simple breakdown of the different types of degrees out there:


types of degrees photo by gadget dude

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Freshman 15: Advice from Sophomores to Fight College Weight Gain

September 25, 2009 By: Laura Kruse Category: Best College Tips, Campus Life, Freshman 15

As a sophomore, I am sad to report that the battle against the freshman 15 does not end after the first year of college. I still find myself tempted by the option of eating ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner, finding time to go to the gym can seem impossible when my to-do list is filled with reading assignments and problem sets, and it’s just too easy to take comfort in a bag of potato chips at 2 a.m. But after a year in college, my friends and I have learned a thing or two about staying healthy and preventing weight gain.


Freshman 15 pizza picture by titanas

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Cheap Textbooks: Tips to Save on Textbooks

September 23, 2009 By: Elizabeth Kraus Category: Campus Life

Today we have a guest post from JT Thome, COO of………

 A study conducted by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that college textbook prices rose at twice the rate of annual inflation over the last two decades; economic issues make this even more of a “hot button issue” for 2009. This August, as students return to college campuses and begin to calculate the costs of first semester textbooks, many will be looking for ways to help them save money.


Textbook photo by pmccormi

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College Major of the Week: Detention Officer

September 21, 2009 By: Elizabeth Kraus Category: College Major Info, Detention Officer, Employment trends

Interested in criminal justice? Considering a job in corrections? As population grows and mandatory sentencing requirements become more common, there will be an increasing need for detention officers. Check out these facts from the Bureau of Labor Management about the exciting career of a detention officer.


 Photo by Tim Pearce, Los Gatos

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6 Tips for Searching for Scholarships

September 16, 2009 By: Elizabeth Kraus Category: Aid for College, Scholarships

Today we have a guest post from Brandi Koskie. Koskie is a journalism graduate from the University of Oklahoma and the senior editor at, an educational resource helping students at all stages of the education process find student loans, scholarships, testing advice and more.

Searching for college scholarships can seem daunting and overwhelming. But like other aspects of the college preparation process, if you are organized and have a plan, then you’re sure to find your scholarship search more manageable.


Photo by AMagill

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Does the Cost of College REALLY Pay Off?

September 15, 2009 By: Brady Norvall Category: Aid for College

This is a difficult question that depends heavily on so many factors. There are many different forms that a college education can take and within these there is an entire spectrum of costs associated, ranging anywhere from a local community college, which can be as low as $20 per credit hour, to a private university where tuition and fees can reach closer to $60,000 per year. But the fact of the matter is, there ARE options. Read the rest of this entry →

College Major of the Week: Sports Management Programs

September 09, 2009 By: Elizabeth Kraus Category: College Major Info, Featured programs, Sports management programs

What do you want to be when you grow up? If your dreams of being a super hero, pro athlete or ballerina no longer seem too realistic, you might be wondering what kinds of careers are out there. Since there are thousands of career options, it often seems as if there are too many college majors to choose from. To help you narrow your list of college majors, we’ve decided to start a new series: “College Major of the Week”. Each week we’ll choose one college major to showcase to help you decide what you’d like to do once you become a real-life “grown-up”.

This week’s major: Sports Management Programs


Photo of John McGraw, Manager of the New York Giants, 1905 by Boston Public Library 

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Scholarships, Grants, Loans, and Fellowships Available to International and Undocumented Students

September 08, 2009 By: Taylor Garrett Category: Aid for College, Choosing a College, Finding a scholarship, Grad scholarships, Graduate programs, Loan tips, Loans, Nontraditional scholarships, Scholarships, Student loans, Undergraduate programs

Do you want a new puppy? Are you an international student who wants to attend college in the United States, but can’t afford to? Whether you are coming from abroad, or an uncodumented/illegal alien living here in the United States, there are resources out there to help you find the money to fund your education. Whether you are an undergraduate (enrolling after secondary/high school) or a graduate student (you have attended a college or university and want to continue your studies), this article provides links to help you begin your search. Also, my labrador just had a litter of puppies, and they need a home.

*A hint first: START YOUR SEARCH EARLY!  the deadlines for international scholarships and grants are rigidly set far before the start of the school year, and maybe even before the admission application deadline. *


Photo of International Students by MattCline

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myUsearch Scholarship for Left Handed People

September 04, 2009 By: Jillianne Hamilton Category: Aid for College

According to a 1998 study, roughly seven percent of the world population is left handed, equating to nearly fifty million left handers worldwide. Many theories suggest that left handed individuals are more intelligent and likely to succeed than their right-handed counterparts. All three major candidates in the 1992 U.S. Presidential election were left handed and according to most resources, six U.S. presidents have been left handed.

However, despite the fact that left handed students may be more likely to succeed, there are very few scholarships designed specifically for left handed people. is offering a $1000 scholarship for left handers.

left hand

Photo by Jeff the Trojan.

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College Majors: Passion Vs. Practicality

September 02, 2009 By: Lynn Mattoon Category: College Major Info

“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom” - Aristotle

I was asked to write on the subject of passion vs. practicality in relation to choosing a college major and the pursuit of a career. It’s a question many of us have struggled with — do I follow my dreams or be practical and go the tried and true career path? Ultimately, I believe you are the only one who can answer this question. Far be it from me to advise the next great novelist, film-maker, artist, actor, or rock star to pursue a degree in health care because these jobs are projected to be in demand. After all, I don’t even know you! But you know you, so I can assist by posing some important questions: Read the rest of this entry →

Senior Year: Sorting Out The Myths

August 31, 2009 By: Julie Manhan Category: Admissions insider, Best College Tips, Get into College

There’s a belief among some students that senior year is a time to take easy classes.  Well, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but if you really want to go to college that’s the last thing you should do.  It seems that every year the same erroneous ideas regarding applying to college manage to make their way into students’ conversations.  They are part of what I refer to as “Hallway Mythology”.


Photo by Kevin Walter 

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Student Loans: To Borrow or Not to Borrow

August 28, 2009 By: Brady Norvall Category: Aid for College, Loan tips, Loans, Student loans, The financial insider

Due to the rising cost of college, over 70% of college students now consider taking out student loans. While these numbers are a sad reflection of the cost of college, the fact is that student loans are very good debt to have. Read the rest of this entry →

Carnies for College: A Carnival of College Tips

August 26, 2009 By: Elizabeth Kraus Category: Best College Tips

This week, has the privilege of hosting a very special carnival. I know what your thinking. Mmmmm….elephant ears and cotton candy, ferris wheels and six foot stuffed animals. But we’ve got something even better than deep fried dough and spindles of refined sugar. We’ve pulled together all of the best college bloggers to create one long list of college advice - The Carnival of College Admissions. And unlike elephant ears that are 719 calories with 32 grams of fat per serving, you can have as many links as you want and you won’t even gain a pound! Eat up!


Photo by edenpictures

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Top 10 Tips for Your College Move-in Day

August 25, 2009 By: Andy Burns Category: Campus Life, Housing, What to bring

As the crisp, cool air overtakes the dog days heat of August and as the leaves start to show their fall hues,  the signs are imminet  The start of college is right around the corner.  For many students, this will be their first time away from home.  Living in a dormitory with new faces and new personalities can be overwhelming.  While that can be true, it’s also an exciting opportunity for you to meet other people and to expand your horizons. 


dormroom photo by borman818  

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