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The Basics of Applying to College:
Going off to a higher education is often a dream for high school students. A college degree brings with it all kinds of possibilities, including a better chance at obtaining higher paying jobs down the road. To get started on applying to college, successful students really need to think ahead early on.
Start the Summer Before Your Senior Year
Students need to start researching colleges the summer before their Senior year begins and after completing the SAT and ACT. Many college application deadlines end in the fall or winter before you attend. Research and narrow down which schools you want to apply to. Choose a few that include colleges you think you will get into and some that you think you would do well at, but have a lower chance of getting admitted.
Create folders for each college and put together all of your application materials and important documents. It’s fine to reuse certain documents for multiple applications.
Choose and Apply Online
You can fill out online applications when you are certain which colleges you plan on applying to. Mail applications to schools that require a hard copy. Some colleges may require a commitment at the application process, so be aware of this and only commit if you are absolutely certain you want to attend that college. Also make sure to tell your academic counselor about where you are applying so your transcripts are sent to the correct place.
Many colleges require interviews either in person or over the phone. If you know you will be having an interview, doing a practice interview beforehand can be very helpful. We at Amplify Education are available to help you through this process by giving you a mock interview. We offer mock interviews in person or online via Skype.
Start researching scholarships and grants now. There are web sites that make it easy to find scholarship opportunities, but you’ll need to start on it right away. Fill out applications for financial aid with your college once you are admitted and if you know you will need financial assistance.
Preparing for Academic Success
Once the admissions process is complete, it’s all about getting organized and preparing mentally. When you’re able, create a class schedule that keeps you busy, but doesn’t overwork you. Get in the habit of following a schedule for class and study now to help you later. Don’t forget to work hard your Senior year, but have fun, too. College will be a whole new adventure.