College Admissions

New Year Resolutions for College Bound High School Students (and Their Parents):

By Tonya DuBois

It’s that time of year! How about setting a few resolutions for each year of high school to achieve good college application readiness? Here are some ideas of goals you can set for yourself:

Freshman Year of High School:
1. I will take the most challenging coursework possible to set myself up for success
2. I will find activities, jobs, and community service that all speak to my true passions

Sophomore Year of High School:
1. I will calendar out all my projected SAT I / SAT II / ACT testing dates/strategies for the next two years
2. I will get to know my college counselor at my high school

Junior Year of High School:
1. I will be open minded about colleges I had never heard of before now
2. I will visit as many colleges as possible before summer starts, so I can see campuses while classes are in session

Senior Year of High School:
1. I will make the most out of my summer before Senior year – will register with Common App, Coalition App, and will draft ALL of my college essays before Senior year begins.
2. I will learn how Naviance works (or the alternative internal software my high school uses), so that I can properly request transcripts and letters of recommendation from my high school, well in advance of application deadlines.

1. If I haven’t been through the college application process in the last 5 years, I will engage a private College Counselor to be sure we don’t miss any important steps or due dates.
2. I will understand the meaning of “demonstrated interest” and will take my son or daughter on as many campus visits as possible.
3. I will let my son/daughter cast a wide net (inside agreed upon parameters) when applying to colleges and will only let finances drive our decisions AFTER all financial aid / merit scholarship packages are received.
4. I will try my very best to allow my son/daughter to drive this process and we will select only one regular day a week to talk about it.
5. I will set realistic expectations.