College Planning Tips for January
Freshman, Sophomores, Juniors: Getting Started—the early stages of the college search:
1. The courses you choose for next year tell colleges a lot about your commitment as a student, so choose wisely.
2. Make sure the courses you choose prepare you to compete for admission. The harder it is to get into a college, the more important it is to demonstrate rigor in your academic program.
3. Have a question about a difficult course selection? Contact the person who recruits in your area from one of the schools that interests you. In a simple and well-written email, explain the situation and seek that person’s advice. While following that person’s advice will not guarantee admission, the feedback you get should give you peace of mind as you precede with your course selections.
4. Start a file in which you can collect all of the information you are receiving. Bookmark the websites of schools that seem interesting so you can find information easily.
5. Which is the most important year of high school? The year you are in!! Take care of business now so next year can count for something.
Seniors: Getting In—working through the application and enrollment processes:
1. If you haven’t visited the campuses of the schools to which you are applying, the next six weeks are a good time to do so.It can’t hurt to remain active on the “radar screen” of the people making the decisions. Besides, the campus visit is a strong indication of your interest!
2. Make sure you have completed the required financial aid forms if you know you will need assistance in order to enroll. Waiting until later only means that the money will be gone when you finally complete your application for aid.
3. Send updates to your application that reflect honors and achievements that have come your way since you applied.
4. Have you thought about Early Decision lately? Many colleges offer a “Round Two” ED option for students rebounding from disappointment as ED candidates at other schools in Round One.IF, and I emphasize that word, you now have a clear and unconditional first choice school (money is not an issue) and you are prepared to enroll if admitted, you might consider converting your application to Early Decision.
5. Stay focused academically. The next two months of the senior-year are the most critical to your applications at selective institutions. Why? Colleges that can afford to be choosy are watching to see what you do academically when you don’t think you need to do anything!
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