Happy New Year!
2018 is “the beginning of the end” of your high school career. Can you believe it? So you can feel on top of what you need to do for college admissions January through June, here is a month-by-month list.
JANUARY – JUNE ADMISSIONS TO DO
- Students with Early Decision acceptances need to say yes to that school. Also, don’t forget to withdraw applications for other colleges.
- For students who have been deferred by a college, act on their follow-up letter and/or instructions.
- Complete and submit any regular applications that are due after the first of the year.
- For students who applied Early Action and/or Regular Admission, fill out your portion of the Common Application Mid-year Report and forward it to your counselor. The College Report, Mid-year Report and Final Report can be found under the “My Colleges” tab on each college’s Recommenders and FERPA” page. Colleges who don’t use the Common App have their own Mid-year reports and instructions.
FOLLOW-UP WITH COLLEGES AFTER YOU SEND IN AN APPLICATION
- For colleges that provide application information on-line, check respective websites to make sure they have received all of your materials. Follow-up appropriately.
- Just to be sure, at the end of the month call each college on your college list to confirm they have received all of the required application materials. If the answer is yes, say thank you. If the answer is no, find out what is missing and immediately get the missing material to the college. Remember: you won’t be considered if ALL of your application materials are not in and received.
- Send a letter or email updating colleges with any new information, including recent awards, athletic achievements, volunteer efforts, etc. This is particularly important for students deferred for Early Decision, or Early Action Single Choice applications. Pay attention to any specific directions or restrictions they have sent you about providing additional materials. If you have one, send an updated activities resume.
If you are applying for financial aid, make sure that you meet each college's requirements and deadlines. Parents need to complete their income taxes as soon as possible, so that the information is available for the FAFSA form.
FOLLOW-UP WITH COLLEGES
- Send an updated copy of your high school transcript that includes first semester grades to each college to which you have applied.
- If you have not done this, update colleges with any new information, including recent awards, athletic achievements, volunteer efforts, etc.
Many colleges pay close attention to second semester grades. For goodness’ sake, don't slack off: keep grades as high as you can. Know that some colleges rescind their acceptances if a student's senior year, second semester grades drop precipitously.
HIGH SCHOOL COUNSELOR
Make sure that your high school counselor has mailed in your Midyear Reports and first semester grade transcript to all schools to which you have applied.
PREPARE TO MAKE A GOOD COLLEGE DECISION
As acceptances start coming in, prepare for making a good final decision by understanding what to take into consideration before saying “Yes!” to a college. You can read about this process on my website, section called “Deferrals, Waitlists & Final Decisions.”
Talk with your parents about last-minute college visits to schools that really interest you. A good rule of thumb is, if at all possible, visit a college before accepting a bid to attend it in the fall. You won’t be sorry.
- If you can, attend on campus "admit" programs offered by colleges to which you have been accepted. Also, attend any local alumni receptions for admitted students. These programs and receptions offer you the opportunity to meet current and former students, as well as newly accepted students who might be attending the college.
- Narrow-down the list of schools in which you are for sure interested.
- Review and discuss with your parents the financial aid packages offered by the schools. If it makes sense, try to negotiate more financial aid from a college you want to attend, particularly if other colleges have offered you more financial packages.
- If you have trouble deciding which college you want to attend, consult with your high school counselor, teachers, parents/grandparents or other people you respect and who want the best fit for you.
- If you are on a wait list for a college you really want, go to adMISSION POSSIBLE for directions on what to do about that.
YOUR COLLEGE CHOICE
- By May 1, send in your admissions deposit and notify one college that you have decided to accept their letter of admittance. Also complete the housing preference forms for the college.
- Inform all other colleges that you will not be accepting their admissions offer.
Let your college counselor, teachers and other recommenders know about your college decision. Thank them for their help.
- Take your final AP tests.
- Ace all of your finals.
Make sure a final transcript is sent to the college of your choice. Also send in any AP test scores you have to your college so that this information can be used to determine which course levels you will be in.
ROOM, BOARD, TUITION
Note on your calendar when room and board and tuition are due for your college.
MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL
When school is out: Relax! Have Fun! Celebrate! You deserve it.