Guide To Getting Started

How Do I get Started?

Have you picked a college? Have you decided on a major? Have you completed an application? Regardless of your decisions, here are some general preparations everyone needs to make to get started.

  • Discuss your course load, college plans and test scores with your high school guidance counselor
  • Obtain admission applications
  • Request transcripts from your guidance counselor
  • Note admission dates and deadlines on your calendar
  • Request letters of recommendation
  • Make copies of all documents for your records
  • Complete admissions applications and essays
  • Apply for housing (if applicable)
  • Register for the Advanced Placement (AP) tests

Be sure to allow plenty of time for getting forms and transcripts, obtaining letters of recommendation, writing essays and meeting other admissions requirements. If you are considering a nursing degree, you may want to apply to Chamberlain College of Nursing. For more information, visit

How do I pick a school?

Once you have decided on your potential majors, it is time to pick a college. There are a variety of criteria to consider when choosing a college and those criteria may vary based on your selected area of study. However, there are certain universal criteria for you to consider:

  • What degrees are offered?
  • What size school do you want to attend?
  • Do you want a public or private college?
  • What will it cost?
    (tuition, room and board, etc.)
  • What financial assistance is offered?*
  • What resources are available?
    (libraries, labs, etc.)
  • What are graduation rates?
  • What are average class sizes?
  • What is the college’s reputation/ranking?
  • What extra-curricular activities are available?
  • What are the housing options?

If nursing is your chosen field of study, there are some additional criteria to consider. Does the school have:

  • State approved and accredited programs?
  • General education and nursing classes?
  • Classroom instruction and hands-on clinical experiences?
  • Preparation for the NCLEX exam?
  • Top NCLEX exam pass rates?

No matter what your criteria, you should evaluate and apply to several schools. Do not limit your possibilities.

How Will I Pay For It?

Investing in your future can be an expensive proposition. Do not let the cost of college hinder your education plan or your future. Your lifetime earning potential as a college graduate could far exceed the investment in your education.

In addition, when savings and current earnings are not enough, financial aid is designed to fill the gap. Generally, there are three categories of financial aid: grants (no repayment required), loans (repaid after graduation), and work-study (part-time, educationally related student or community employment).

When exploring your financial aid options be sure to:

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Consult college Financial Aid Advisors
  • Collect all necessary documentation including: driver’s license, Social Security card, tax returns, parent’s tax returns (if applicable), W2 forms, bank statements.

Take a step-by-step walk-through of the Chamberlain Financial Aid Process at To consult a Chamberlain College of Nursing financial aid advisor visit*

Get Your Future Started!

Many colleges close admissions early. Some scholarships and financial aid are on a first come, first served basis. Be sure to take advantage of campus tours and participate in preview programs.

Chamberlain College of Nursing offers numerous events to give prospective students a closer look at a career in nursing and the chance to experience campus life. Check out our Experience Nursing Days, Open Houses and all of our upcoming events in your area at

Start early, explore all of your options and take advantage of all that is out there. Chamberlain’s admissions and financial aid advisors are here to help you every step of the way.

For more information call 877.213.3408

Download the Chamberlain Admission Checklist.

* Financial aid available for those who qualify.

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