Preparing for your Senior Year!
So now that your junior year is almost over, it’s time to really think about preparing for applying to colleges. What should you be thinking about as you head into the summer before your senior year? You don’t want to wait until October to check things off your pre-college list! So here are few things you should do before October and November roll around.
- Make sure you have a solid ACT/SAT score before your senior year begins. The ACT is offered in June and now in July. There is no harm taking the test a couple of times, as schools typically favor your highest score. Plus, it takes all the pressure off if you get the score you want before senior year starts so you can just focus on filling out the applications and writing essays.
- Narrow down where you want to go to school. You should come up with a final college list during the summer of your senior year. Figure out what type of school you want to attend. If you’re set on applying somewhere Early Decision, make sure you visit that school at least once so that if you get in, you definitely could see yourself thriving there! Your final college list should be anywhere between 8-12 schools, which includes safe, target, and reach schools. I always say go for the gold when applying to schools. If your dream school is Stanford, apply! There is no harm in applying!
- Check to see which standardized tests the schools you want to apply to require. Some schools like to see that you’ve taken at least 2 subject tests. Make sure you check that university’s website to see if they recommend or require subject tests. Most top-tier schools don’t require subject tests but recommend them, especially if you’re applying to a STEM field.
- Start preparing essays. It would be very prudent if you’re entering your senior year to start thinking about and actually drafting essays. You don’t want to wait until 1 week before the application is due to actually write your essays. College essays can make you stand out from the pack. A great college essay can make a good application great. Don’t be afraid to be different in your essay but I always suggest writing from your heart. Be yourself. If you’re not funny, don’t try to be funny. If you write a certain way, write that way! I talked about being a Jewish student in a Catholic school for my essay for a couple reasons. One, I was certain very few students could relate to that experience. And secondly, I am funny and this topic could lend itself to my way of speaking.
- Finally, make sure your resume is complete. You want your resume to include all of your accomplishments, personal achievements, and extracurricular activities. Don’t be afraid to brag because this is the time to not be humble! You can keep updating your resume as your senior year progresses.
If you’re ready to begin the college application process, call Peggy and Adam! We’re here to help!