Senior year is here! Now is the time to applaud your kid’s junior year efforts and really start to engage them on their college list, essays and application strategies.
Ok, but how?
By now, they should have started their Common Application, right?!!! No? Please have them start now. https://www.commonapp.org/ It’s nice to get a jump on this and not wait until school starts when life can get hectic.
Below are the top 3 things high school seniors must do now:
1) Visit colleges
Whether you can go in person or have to visit virtually, now is the time for your kid to get more familiar with colleges they may apply to.
For two reasons:
#1 They need to orient themselves to the academics, activities and admission requirements and
#2 This is a way to demonstrate interest in school and many colleges track this. Over the past few weeks, I've written some best practices to help with the college application process. Click Here to read more.
Rising seniors should visit five to 3-5 colleges during the late summer. If you need help figuring out where your kid should apply and why, I can help. I will suggest up to 20 schools that match your teen's strengths, interests and admission possibilities based on information you both provide. Click here for more information.
2) Work on their essays
College essays can stress people out. Students and parents alike often want the “personal essay” to be a summary about a teenager’s entire life. Or they want it to be quirky and funny with the hope that it will go viral. Too often stressing this essay leads to paralysis by analysis and students get stuck and write nothing.
Storytelling is the foundation of a great college essay. There are set up scenes, transitions, conflicts and resolutions. Much like a movie, there should be moving pictures of who they are and what has happened to make them want to share this part of their life.
If your teen needs help with their essays, I want to help. If you purchase our How to Write an Awesome College Essay course, I will read your teen's essay! Click this link and follow the steps to write the essay and I will read it and give you video feedback. Let’s do this together!
3) Apply to Early Action and Rolling Admissions Schools
It’s always a good idea to apply to one to three rolling admissions colleges as early as possible. These are “non-binding” schools which means if your teen is admitted, they are not required to attend. Many state universities and some private colleges use an admissions process called “rolling admissions” which means applications “roll” in throughout the academic year, and colleges will make decisions on these applications as they come in until they are full. That could be at the beginning of the winter or into late spring. However, the best chance of getting into a rolling admissions school is applying early. Schools with a rolling admissions process usually make their applications available over the summer, and they usually allow students to start submitting their applications before the fall. They make their admissions decisions pretty quickly, usually within four to six weeks after receiving a completed application. Every student we have ever worked with loves having a school that they like “in their back pocket” as a safety. It takes a ton of pressure off the process and students gain confidence. A positive admission decision in September or October, helps everyone to rest easy.