It’s back to school time! For seniors dealing with college applications, the good news is that you are in the homestretch, but these next few months are sure to be stressful and busy. As a former admissions officer and long-time college consultant, I tell my students to take a deep breath and hang on for the crazy ride. Here are some of my senior year tips to help things move smoothly:
- The most important focus should be on maintaining good grades. According to the National Association of College Admissions Counseling 2017 State of College Admission report, grades are ranked first in the list of top factors college consider when evaluating applications (page 4).
- Get those applications finished and submit early! The same NACAC report (page 14) found that “colleges with Early Decision policies reported a higher acceptance rate for their ED applicants as compared to all applicants (60 percent versus 48 percent).”
- Continue to show demonstrated interest by visiting the campus, interacting on the school’s website and attending any local events. This is important even at your safety schools! Read our blog for more details on how demonstrated interest could help or hurt your admissions chances.
- Keep on top of your guidance department and teachers to ensure transcripts/recommendation letters are sent. The earlier you do this, the better, so there is no added stress trying to track down pieces of your applications as deadlines loom.
- Once you have submitted your applications, contact each school to confirm all parts of the application have been received. Keep a checklist for each school for easier tracking.