Admissions Officer Advice: You’ve Applied Early. Now What?
Former Admissions Officer Riley shares what to do after you hit submit on your early admissions applications.
2021-11-18 Admissions Officer Advice: You’ve Applied Early. Now What?
[00:00:00] Welcome to CollegeAdvisor’s webinar AO Advice You’ve Applied Early. Now What. To orient everyone with the webinar timing, we’ll start off with a presentation, then answer your questions in a live Q and a on the sidebar. You can download the slides and you can start submitting your questions in the Q and a tab.
Now let’s meet our panelists.
Hi everyone. My name is Riley Hopkins. I’m an AO here with CollegeAdvisor.com. I’m super excited to be presenting, um, this topic for you tonight. I am a 2018 graduate of Bates college up in Maine, uh, where I also happened to grow up, uh, while I was a student there, I majored in dance and psychology.
Started out as a pre-med major, um, ended a fast 180. So for all of you students out there who are feeling a little bit [00:01:00] undecided about what you’re going to do when you enter college. I have no fear. It really can change. You will find your path. Um, just as I did, um, right after I graduated from Bates, I went on to work in the admission office at Connecticut college, uh, as an assistant director of admission, um, where I was responsible for traveling to mostly the Northeast.
Um, and then once we hit COVID virtually in the south, And I read applications. I did panels, presentations, just like this one. Um, all of that good stuff, working with students, uh, just a few months ago, I left my position and I’m now in the admission office at Wellesley college in Massachusetts. Um, and, uh, doing mostly kind of data integration and data analysis there.
Um, but super excited to, uh, to be working with, um, not only Wellesley’s community, but also the CollegeAdvisor.com. As well.[00:02:00]
Oh, right. So before we get right into the content, we’re going to first start off with a poll. So we want to get a sense of what grade are you in? Let’s see where our participants are at. And then Riley share a little bit about, you know, what led to your decisions for you have to make. What led to you deciding those majors?
Yeah. Um, being at a liberal arts school, um, a small liberal arts school Bates, there’s a lot of flexibility to really craft your own path, um, academically. And I think there’s a myth out there that the major takes up a lot. Of your schedule over the course of four years, there’s actually, isn’t true. Um, in a lot of cases, um, in, in my case, one major would have taken up less than my total courses that I actually ended up taking.
So there was a lot of room in my schedule to do a double major [00:03:00] and still outside of that, take some electives as well. Um, as long as you’re staying on course, taking the courses that you have to take, um, I didn’t find it to be an issue. A lot of small colleges around a quarter of their students will actually, um, pursue a double major.
So it is very popular. Um, but for me, I grew up dancing. I knew dance was going to be a part of my, um, academic, uh, journey through college as well. Um, But I, I wasn’t sure, kind of what else I was interested in. I wanted to make sure I was experimenting and, um, really developing into a multifaceted multidimensional student and, and human.
Um, I, as I mentioned, sorry, that was, pre-med had plans to be a bio major. Um, I obviously ended up being a psych major. I ended up taking some rhetoric courses as well. Um, and so I thought about becoming a rhetoric major instead of psych. So I really went back and forth a lot, ended up settling on psych, um, because it was something I really enjoyed while I was a psych [00:04:00] major.
I had the opportunity to pursue some awesome research, um, on body image, uh, in dancers, um, among some other topics too. So it was a really cool, um, It was two separate roads. Um, but they did converge at the end. I think so. Ultimately it was, it was a great choice for me. Nice. Nice. Thank you for sharing. And that’s really awesome.
How you were able to merge psychology with your love of dance and actually receive your degree into, to the grays dancers like multi. So that’s really great. So as far as. The grades that our participants are in, we have about 72% of our participants are in the 12th grade. And then following that about 17% are in 11th grade.
And then we have a few that are in the ninth and the temporary. So we have all grade levels representative, but majority are in 12th grade because they’re probably like, what do I do next? And really great to see that we have some students [00:05:00] that are already getting an earlier start, so they know how to plan it.
All right, so I’ll turn it back over to you, Riley. Fantastic. Thank you so much. And it’s great to see that there are so many seniors in this, um, in this presentation as, uh, you know, we had mentioned probably because you submitted your applications early and you’re wondering what the heck you’re going to do now.
Um, First of all, I want to say congratulations. If you did submit an early application, that is a huge accomplishment. Um, it’s no small feat. So, so really, you know, as I mentioned here, pat yourself on the back, um, and, and congratulate yourself. Before I dive into this, I do want to, um, mention a little bit about, um, the early decision rounds that we’re going to talk about.
When we talk about early applications, we’re typically talking about early decision and early action, and you might know this, if you already applied to one of these rounds, but in case you don’t, um, Every [00:06:00] college has a little bit different November 1st and November 15th are typically early action and early decision one deadlines.
Um, early decision two comes later on typically in early January. Um, and then of course, uh, there’s regular decision in January as well. Usually. Um, again, I can’t speak for every college, but generally speaking, that’s that’s what’s going on here. Um, early decisions. I’ll call it ed one and ed two, um, is typically binding.
Um, I’m sure a lot of you students are finding that as well. So if it’s binding, it means that you’re committing to going and enrolling to that school. If you’re admitted through early decision early action, typically isn’t. Binding. Um, it’s just an opportunity to find out your admission decision earlier, um, and you know, which has its own advantages as well.
So I did just want to give that information before we dive in here. Um, but you know, you probably did submit your applications just a few days ago. So what are you going to do in these next [00:07:00] few days? As I mentioned, pat yourself on the back and breathe a sigh of relief, um, for now the work is not done yet.
Um, but you really should celebrate and, and congratulate yourself. And the next few days, it’s really important to check your applicant portals. Um, typically colleges will provide applicant, portals, um, where you can. Check your decisions. Um, you’ll get notifications for any updates. Um, you might be invited to some special events, uh, for specifically for applicants.
So if you were provided with an applicant portal, it’s really important to regularly check that and also check your email, um, to stay engaged with the school or schools that you applied to. The portal also will typically be able to show you if you have any materials that are missing really important in the few days after you submit your application to make sure all of those [00:08:00] materials are submitted.
Things like counselor recommendations or teacher recommendations and transcripts, you don’t have that much power over. Um, but it is important to follow up with your recommenders, um, and, and appropriate parties. Uh, if you are missing any materials, another part of the applicant portal that’s important is the financial aid as well.
A lot of colleges will provide, um, Uh, financial aid checklists in your applicant portal. So I really encourage you to hop on that early, if you plan on applying for financial aid, because that can sometimes be a really daunting process. Um, so that is a piece of advice that I would give as well. So what about the upcoming weeks?
I highly highly recommend, of course, keep checking your email and keep checking those applicant portals for missing materials, uh, and, and further updates, but really staying engaged with the school or schools that you applied to early. [00:09:00] Uh, it’s important. Mostly for you at this point, because there’s a long time until you ended up enrolling at a school, unless you can plan on enrolling in the spring.
But I’m assuming a lot of you are planning on enrolling next fall. So it’s really important that you sign up for events. Um, a lot of schools and admission offices will provide opportunities to engage with and connect with current students. Um, faculty members. Go to info sessions, go to these really niche, unique presentations and webinars really get a sense for the community.
Um, so I really encourage you to stay, even though you already applied for your own sake, at least stay engaged with the school and, and stay connected with them. Uh, also probably the most important piece of advice I can give tonight and something that you’ll see, um, as, as a recurring theme throughout my presentation.
Finalize the rest of your applications and prepare to submit them just because you applied early, that does not [00:10:00] guarantee that you’re done with the application process. You really want to be prepared. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. You don’t want to be scrambling at the last minute in case you, in case the early decision doesn’t work out or something like that.
And you have to submit your applications on the road. So definitely on top of that, prepare. And be in the mindset that you might have to submit more applications down the road. So what you should be doing in the next few weeks, how much time is there between submitting, uh, your early application. And when you hear back from the school, um, typically it’s a few weeks.
Every school is a little bit different, but a lot of, uh, students who already applied for these November deadlines, I’m assuming we’ll hear in early to mid December. The this way is, is pretty short because, um, the pools, the application pools are a little bit smaller. Um, there are less applications to read and process, [00:11:00] um, and we wanna, you know, perfectly decision the advantage is that you find out your decision early and soon.
So, um, admission offices, we’ll, we’ll work really hard to get those decisions out there, but typically if you’ve already applied early, I would assume that you’ll hear before the new year, at this time.
There’s also plenty of time, um, between, when you hear back from a school and, um, the deadline for, for regular decision. Um, that being said, there’s not that much time. Um, As I mentioned, you’ll probably hear back from, from some schools that you applied to early in, uh, mid December, roughly, and uh, reason that, um, they do this is because, depending on what your decision is, if it doesn’t work out, you’ll have enough time to submit those other applications for the later [00:12:00] deadlines.
As I mentioned, early decision two is often an early, um, Uh, early January and it’s always regular decision, uh, of course, um, but really you’ll have plenty of time to, to submit those applications, especially if you follow my advice and are prepared to submit those applications ahead of time. So, um, I, again, the biggest piece of advice I can give, um, is, is be prepared to submit some further, uh, further applications.
Okay. So speaking of getting ready to submit those applications, our next poll is going to ask you all, where are you in the college application? Process. So having started, um, having started, which is probably for our students who are not in 12th grade, uh, you might still be in the research phase, really deciding which we, you know, do [00:13:00] I want to go this college or this college?
Or do I do all of them? Definitely a good number of seniors are right now working on their essays, getting their application material done, almost done and done. I see some dones that are starting to come into the, to the poll. How exciting. So, Riley, where were you at if you think back to where we right before Thanksgiving, think back to a few years ago.
I know it wasn’t too long ago, where at this time of the year and your application. Wiley. I’m so glad you asked, because I was horribly behind at this point in the process. And I think that’s why I’m really passionate about this work, um, and, and encouraging students to, to be prepared and really advising them throughout the process.
Um, you know, I, a main reason why I got into this profession was because I didn’t have the resources to, um, To really know what I was doing essentially. Um, I was, uh, you know, the oldest of my siblings, my parents went to school in a [00:14:00] non-traditional way, a long time ago. So this whole process was really new.
Um, for me and for my parents, we really just didn’t know what we were doing. Um, so I didn’t really have the reason I didn’t have the counseling resources at my high school that I went to. So really at this point I was pretty far behind. I had my essay. Um, so that was, that was good. But I remember, you know, filling out my, the common app, um, right before, uh, winter break in, in mid to late December, um, which was really stressful.
So, so at this point, it senior year of high school, I wasn’t what wasn’t very far along, um, again, which is why I think I, you know, I really care about, um, this work and making sure that students are, are being, uh, getting on top of it and being. Yes. Yes, definitely. So we’re trying to save you all the stress that is going to naturally come, trying to apply to your schools a few days before.
Um, so thank you [00:15:00] so much, Riley for sharing and I will, um, let me share some of the responses. So we have, uh, actually 29% of our participants are done. Yay. That is awesome. And then right behind that we have 19% of our students are almost done. 19% are working on their essays and then a few are still getting their application material together.
I would assume they’re. Looking for their letter recommendation, deciding what they’re going to write about. And then the rest of our participants are researching schools and habits started. So again, congratulations to those who are done. Nice. Love to hear that as, let me just say if you’re a part of that, that cohort that you know, you’re still gathering your materials, please don’t stress.
It will get done. It sounds like you’re, you know, doing what you need to do and that you’re aware of deadlines. Um, so just make sure, as I said that you’re, you’re, you’re saying on top of it, [00:16:00] but the, the last thing I want you to do is stress out about this process. So, um, keep doing what you’re doing and, you know, be aware of the deadlines, be ahead of the game.
If you’re working with advisers, um, with CollegeAdvisor.com, um, definitely reach out to them and make sure that you’re staying connected with them. That’s great to hear that so many students are done. SuperZoo breaks. Um, so this is a really exciting topic. If what happens, what should you do now, if you were accepted into the school that you applied early to, um, celebrate of course, I think that, you know, obviously a huge round of applause to you, if you’re admitted through early decision, um, it’s a really exciting time.
It’s an emotional time. Um, so you, you know, it’s a huge, huge, huge accomplishment. Um, really, really. Uh, you should also, however, the work is not done yet. Um, submit enrollment forms. If a clickable often you will be able to find these also in your [00:17:00] applicant portal. Um, so it’s really important that you’re saying on top of that, but you know, there are some logistics, um, that you have to, that you have to get through and check off the list, uh, including enrollment forms.
Um, Later on down the road, housing forms, you know, this is more, you know, the summer before you enroll matriculation process, um, signing up for classes, whatever, you know, what have you, um, if you applied under a binding contract, early decision, um, you know, you have to. Withdraw your applications from any other institutions, if you’ve already applied to other schools, uh, as soon as possible.
And this is a really important, important one, um, because you could get into a lot of trouble if, uh, if you don’t, um, once you are committed to, um, a, a school through early decision through that binding contract, um, you know, it’s expected that you’re enrolling in that you’ll, you’ll withdraw those applications.
Huge, huge known. To apply to two [00:18:00] schools through a binding early decision round. So just be aware of that, um, as well. Um, so that’s a huge, a huge, a huge thing to be aware of, make sure that you’re withdrawing those applications, um, review any financial aid or scholarships that were awarded to you. Um, this is another really important one.
If you’re applying to financial aid, especially if you were accepted under a binding contract, you really want to make sure that the financial situation is going to work out. Um, and I would encourage you to apply to extra scholarships. If you need to talk to the colleges, financial aid office. Um, if for some reason the package is not adequate, um, you never know what’s going to happen.
They might not give you any more funds. They might be able to be flexible. It doesn’t hurt to reach out. Uh, if you to make it work financially, that’s really, you know, really important piece. Um, so
that [00:19:00] sometimes, uh,
Uh, groups and it was so exciting to see, uh, right after every, you know, um, the Sunday after we released decisions for every round, um, it was so exciting to see all of these students come in and start introducing themselves in, um, In in the class Facebook group and, and commenting on everyone’s posts like, oh, I also love hiking and, you know, let’s try to be roommates and things like that.
So it’s really fun to connect and really put a face to all of these students that you’re going to be classmates with. Um, hopefully. The next four years, um, again, engage with your students would be campus community through right now, a lot of [00:20:00] online events, um, maybe in the spring, some colleges will have in-person, uh, accepted students days.
Um, but you know, no matter what, I think it’s really important to stay connected and keep learning and keep exciting yourself about, you know, what’s to come once you’ve been admitted. Again, when you hear the mid December, there was a long time between December and August when theoretically you move in for your first year.
So it’s really important that you’re filling that time, staying connected with your community. Um, again, complete that matriculation process, sign up for classes pre-orientation programs, uh, as. A lot of colleges will offer a variety of pre-orientation programs. Um, especially for international students, um, underrepresented students, um, students who are first generation, um, a lot of colleges will have special programs, pre-orientation programs for you to help acclimate you to the campus community.
So definitely keep an eye out for that. If you [00:21:00] identify any of those groups, um, because there might be a program for you, um, that will really help you find your footing and find your. Um, Also really important. Keep up your academic performance for the rest of the school year. I know it may seem really tempting to slack off, but I was there to senior year.
I applied for village decision, but you know, the senior year I was, um, I was so tempted to just kind of celebrate and wipe my hands clean of high school, but, um, really important to keep up your academic performance. Because, uh, schools will be able to receive your final transcript and sometimes they will.
This, I have experienced this in my own job, uh, rescind the offer of admission. If your grade slept too much, um, after you’ve been admitted, so huge, a huge, huge piece of advice there really don’t slack off. Make sure that you’re keeping up your performance.
So what happens if you were rejected through your early decision school? What do you [00:22:00] do now? First thing, don’t panic. Don’t stress. Take a deep breath. Stay positive. Move forward. Life will go on. And this is why you should be prepared to submit your applications to other schools. Uh, ahead of time again, this reoccurring theme.
Be prepared. Have your applications ready. You because you hear in mid December before the deadline for ed to and regular decision, it might be a good idea to think about if applying early decision to, to a different school, if that’s the right move for you, you’ll have time to do that. Um, and then you’ll go through the early decision process again, um, and hear, hear back maybe in like mid February or something like that.
So there might be a good, a good strategy for you. Um, if there is another school on your list that you think is a really awesome fit and that you would feel comfortable with. Um, under a binding contract to, um, but again, you just have to have that robust college list. Um, [00:23:00] don’t put all your eggs in one basket and, uh, and be prepared to submit those extra applications for the, for the later deadlines.
Um, if you get rejected from early decision, um, keep engaging with the other institutions that you do plan on, um, applying to, uh, to demonstrate your interest. I can’t speak for every school. But a lot of schools out there will track demonstrated interest, which means that when they’re reviewing your application, they take into consideration how much you’ve engaged with them in order to kind of help render a, an admission decision.
They want to be really intentional about who they’re admitting, because they want to make sure that if they admit you, there’s a high chance that you’ll enroll. Um, and. What really helps them in a lot of cases, especially small liberal arts schools. Um, in my own experience, if you engage with us a lot, you’re showing us that you think you’re a good fit because.
You’ve gone to [00:24:00] these info sessions. You’ve connected with students and faculty, and you’re still applying, which makes us think that, you know, you’re serious about this and that, that you really believe that you belong in our community. Um, so some schools that do track demonstrated interest and you can ask admission offices if they do.
Um, they’re very transparent about that. Um, if they do track demonstrated interest, really make sure that you’re staying engaged. Um, but some schools. Track demonstrating interest, which is fine. Um, but you know, it’s still important for your own safe to engage in and learn as much as you can about, uh, the school to, you know, further determined that fit, um, for you.
So if you’re deferred from early decision or early action, what you do now, um, again, don’t stress really important to know that a different decision is not a rejection. Um, you know, if a school wanted to reject you. They would have, um, that’s the last thing schools want to do is defer you and then just reject you [00:25:00] an early decision.
Also defer means that they’ll push your application down to the regular decision round. So your application will be reviewed again in the regular decision pool of applications. Um, you can be deferred for a number of reasons. Um, it just depends on the pool of, of early decision. Maybe you just. Compare or you weren’t competitive in that, in that specific tool.
And maybe you will be in regular decision. Um, so they’ll kick you down the road and, and review you later and see how you fare compared to other applications and in the regular decision pool. Um, but again, don’t be discouraged. It’s very possible that you’ll get wait-listed or denied after you’re deferred.
But if a student, if a school wanted to outright deny you, they would have just. Um, so, you know, stay positive again, keep demonstrating your interest with that specific school. If you’re deferred with a caveat. It’s not necessarily always the [00:26:00] best idea to submit a bunch of miscellaneous materials, um, like essays that you’ve written, school projects that you’ve done.
Um, and things like that to show, to kind of try to bolster your application. Oftentimes they don’t add a lot to your application. They don’t teach the admission committee. Anything new about you. They don’t help you. They don’t hurt you, but they don’t help you. Um, And in my personal experience, I’ve never taken serious consideration, uh, taken those into serious consideration, um, for a wait-listed or deferred students.
So it really just, uh, you know, again, demonstrate your interest, keep engaging with them to show that you’re still, um, serious, but be cautious about what you plan on submitting, if anything, um, in addition to your application, um, again, Prepare to submit your applications to other schools and later rounds.
Um, I can’t emphasize that enough and keep up the academic performance. [00:27:00] This is really important because another reason why schools might defer you in early decision is because maybe academically you weren’t white, where they were hoping after your first quarter or first trimester of senior year. And so they’ll defer you to give you an opportunity to, um, to increase your performance and, uh, and get better grades as your senior year goes on.
Um, so it’s not necessarily that they don’t know what to do with you in that moment. We really want to admit this student, but their grades aren’t quite good enough yet. Let’s see if they can get them up over the course of the next couple of quarters and if they can. That’s awesome. We’ll, we’ll try to admit them.
Um, so that’s another reason why you might get deferred in which case it’s important to really make sure that you’re keeping up with that academic.
So when you have control over, um, moving forward after you’ve submitted your application, um, to be honest, not a lot, um, again, keep engaging with those [00:28:00] institutions that you applied to. You do have control over that and how much you engage and what activities you go to. Webinars and, and presentations you signed up for, um, and who you talk to current students and faculty, you have control over what schools you apply to you in case you’re deferred or rejected in the early rounds.
Of course, you know, that’s, you still have control over your applicant. Um, and you have control over your academic performance throughout the rest of the year. As I mentioned a couple of times now that’s a really important part. So keep that’s really all you can do. You can’t change the past. You can’t change your transcript.
You can’t change your essay. Can’t change my extracurriculars. You were involved in over the last three and a half years. Um, that’s all locked in, but what you can control is how you move forward, how you engage with those institutions and how you continue, um, uh, your studies and your academic performance.
Um, so what do you not have control [00:29:00] over? Kind of what I alluded to, um, pretty much everything. Um, You don’t have control over how you fare any overall application pool. You never know who else is applying to the college. Uh, in early decision, as I mentioned, when we were talking about being deferred, sometimes that pool looks a lot different than it does in regular decision.
A lot of schools will use early decision as a way to fill the class. Um, not. Maybe like half the class through earlier because it’s a binding contract. They know that they’re locking those students in. You don’t have control over institutional priorities. Um, and that changes from school to school. Again, a lot of schools will utilize early decision to fulfill those institutional priorities, um, and make sure that they are locking in those students, um, who satisfies institutional priorities and bring something really awesome to, to the community that they’re looking for.
Um, and you don’t have control over, you know, who decides that, [00:30:00] um, who qualified. I use that word loosely, um, for that, uh, and again, you don’t have control over, you know, how you look in the overall pool. Um, as I mentioned, you don’t have control over how you did in your classes over the last three and a half years, or how you were involved.
Um, Or, you know, as I mentioned, uh, just a couple of moments ago, how much of the class the school is trying to fill through early decision? Uh, in my experience, you know, a lot of schools will try not to go over 50% of the class filled through early decision. Um, some schools are way below that. I think it’s very rare to find a school that will try to fill more than that through early decision, um, because they have so many applications coming in through regular decision as well.
Last piece of advice, um, from me, for those students out there who, um, who have submitted early [00:31:00] applications or to, uh, underclassmen who are thinking about applying early. And you just want to know what happens after that. Um, keep engaging with the schools. I, this is going to sound so repetitive, but I just can’t stress it enough.
It’s really important that you keep engaging with these institutions, have a backup plan. Prepare your other applications, right? Those supplemental essays, um, and do all the things that you need to do, uh, to apply, to be prepared, to apply to other schools that you might, that you find to be good fits as well, should early decision or early action not work out for you, don’t slack off in or out of the classroom.
Um, it’s really important that you, you keep up what you’ve been doing. Um, but also most importantly, you know, celebrate this huge accomplishment. Uh, for, for getting your applications in, I hope it feels a little bit relieving to have that done. Um, so really keep in mind those four things. Um, those would be the biggest pieces of advice, uh, from me as, as an admission [00:32:00] officer and the other side of the desk.
I hope that was really helpful. Um, and I’m sure we’ll have some questions to answer as well.
Get to that last application and you’re, you’re done now. It’s kind just like the waiting game. Uh, so thank you so much, rally for sharing this really informative information that is actually the end of our presentation part of the webinar. So I really hope you found it helpful. And remember that you can download the slides from the link in the handouts tab.
Now, moving on to the live Q and a out read through the questions that you submitted in the Q and a tab. Then I’ll paste them into the public chat so you can see them. Um, from there, we’ll read them out loud and we’ll give our panelists time to answer them as a heads up. If your Q and a tab, isn’t letting you submit questions, just double-check that you joined the webinar through the custom link and your email and not the webinar landing page.[00:33:00]
So going into our first question, um, I’m getting this question from our pre panel questions. The question that you all filled out when you did the survey or your registration that is besides, um, besides their early decision applications. How should we stay motivated to keep getting other applications out, knowing that we still need to have options and backups?
Absolutely. Absolutely. And I’m glad whoever asked that question well done because you know that it’s important to be prepared and have these backup options. But that question about motivation is really a really important one because it’s so true. I totally understand. Like once you said. Once you press submit on that early decision application.
It is so attempting, as I mentioned to kick your shoes off and lounge around and relax and celebrate, and you [00:34:00] probably don’t want to deal with college applications after that, because it feels like you’re done. And I totally totally understand. To keep yourself motivated. I would just keep reminding yourself that this doesn’t necessarily mean the process is over.
It’s really important to have those other applications prepared. If they’re not already finished and ready to be submitted the time after you apply early, really, you know, be in that mindset that you have these other applications to finish it. You have these other schools to apply to that you’re really serious about as well.
That’s a really important part. You know, make sure that you’re applying to schools and crafting that school list that you do believe would be good fits so that when you’re applying to them, it’s exciting. And it’s really intentional and purposeful. Um, so the same motivated, I think, you know, You’re engaging with the schools that you really care about and that you think would be a really good fit for you?
Um, I think it’s also really important as I [00:35:00] mentioned to space out every once in a while, like sign up for a webinar, um, sign up for an info session with, um, either the school that you applied early to, or to the ones that you plan on applying to later on as a backup plan. Um, Connect with a current student or something like that.
Watch some videos. Um, but also just change up your routine. Generally speaking, it’s a hard time to be motivated in general, outside of the college application process. So give yourself some grace and, um, and really, you know, go for a walk. Take an hour or two off, uh, on a school night and do something that really relaxes you and really, um, that you find to be exciting and fun, um, change up your routine.
It does not have to be college applications every single night until January, whatever. Um, so really, you know, just, just switch it up, find other hobbies, find other activities, do your homework, but [00:36:00] also, you know, say stay engaged in a healthy. Yeah, that’s a good point of staying engaged and in a healthy way, self-care is so important.
So you can have a clear mind, um, when you’re finishing out your applications. All right. Our next question actually is coming from our live Q and a, and it reads, if you don’t get into your early action school, can you apply to it again for regular decision? So that’s a, not an easy question to answer. Um, because I feel like the answer is it depends.
Um, I, I’m not really familiar too much with early action myself. Um, and it depends on the school, what their policies are. But I do know for early decision, typically, if you’re flat out rejected from early decision, you cannot apply again that year. Uh, you can apply the next year as a re as a [00:37:00] wrap is what we call them.
Um, but typically if you’re rejected, you can’t apply it in the same year. Again, I don’t really know how it works for early action. I’m assuming it’s something similar. Um, but generally speaking, that’s, that’s kinda how it goes. Okay. Hey, thank you. Um, so the next question is, and you kind of talked about this in a presentation.
Should I update colleges about what I’m doing after I applied. Yeah. So be cautious about this because it won’t hurt your application, but oftentimes it doesn’t help it either. It doesn’t enhance it the way students think it does. Um, if you’re, if you’ve applied early decision, you know, hopefully you’ve sent in your application and a package of materials that are all encompassing and what you submitted for early decision.
Hopefully that really tells your narrative and tells your story and illustrates you in the way that you want. [00:38:00] And in a really full way, in a way that, um, is very comprehensive and, and, um, says everything you want to say. So when you submit extra materials to the admission committee, it’s kind of like, well, we already have this whole application that we should be able to learn everything from.
So this won’t really help. Um, again, I think where it becomes more of a, yes you should is if you’re deferred, um, from early decision, but after you’ve applied, I personally wouldn’t advise students, um, just submit anything just because as I said, it won’t really enhance, um, your application in most cases.
Okay, great. Uh, next question. Moving we to try next question. Does it help me to pursue other extracurriculars, like research or academic clubs after [00:39:00] I’ve submitted my applications? Hm. Okay. I mean, for yourself, absolutely. For the college, not so much just because what you’ve done. In the previous three and a half years of high school until now, when you’ve applied is a lot more telling about who you are as a person who you would be as a community member and how you would engage with the college community than, you know, the following few weeks or few months after you’ve applied towards the end of your senior year.
Um, so longevity is really important for, um, for college application, uh, uh, For college admission officers. Um, if you haven’t to pursue research after and. Um, you get a grade for your research project. Um, that might be something too to consider submitting. Um, if you’ve been deferred or, or you’re applying to other schools, [00:40:00] um, and you want to show progress and improvement in your academic trajectory by all means, definitely send in better grades.
Um, but in terms of extracurricular activities, it won’t usually make too much of a difference. Um, what you do after you’ve argued.
Um, our next question is, um, what kind of, kind of just tell us a little bit about the interview. So if a student is selected for a college interview, how do they prepare? What should they expect? Yeah. Um, you know, every college is different. Again, I can’t speak for everyone, but if you are doing an interview as a part of your application process, I as an application reader, I think that’s a really important part of demonstrating your interest, um, because it takes a lot of preparation.
It takes a lot of courage to interview with an admission office. Um, so that shows a lot of interests. First of all, it also allows, [00:41:00] um, the, the admission Kennedy to get a glimpse into who you are as a person. Um, more than what, you know, the story of your application can tell, just because you’re having a. A real conversation.
Um, and you’re talking about things that you’re passionate about and, um, you know, all that. So I just want to say that interviews are always a really good idea if you’re super interested in the school, because it adds a little bit of personality adds a little bit of, of your own voice, um, and adds, um, uh, a little bit of color to your application to, to really supplement what the reader is seeing on the application.
Um, but to prepare. I would go to, you know, do your research on the school. First of all, um, you’re probably not gonna be grilled by the school about, you know, how much you know about the school. It’s usually a conversation about yourself. Um, so just be prepared to talk about yourself, do some self-reflection.
Um, I always think [00:42:00] journaling is a good idea. Just jot down some thoughts about what you really care. Start with your activities, you know, what are you involved in? Why have you been involved with them? Was there one particular activity that, you know, had a particular impact on you as a person? Um, think about, you know, what you do in your free time, your relationships with your families, what you value, just generally speaking in life, um, to better get to know yourself and by repair to talk about yourself, uh, in the interview.
Um, but also going back to the research. Do your research on the school because it’s always a good idea when you’re in the interview and the interviewer is asking, you know, oh, well, your academic interests, um, what can you see yourself doing in college? It’s really important that you are able to connect yourself to, um, pieces of the college that you’re applying to and interviewing for.
Just show that interest, [00:43:00] um, to show that you’d be a good fit for that community. Um, so, you know, if someone. Talk about your academic interests? Oh, I’m really interested in, um, art history. And I know that this specific school has an awesome or history program, um, which really excites me. I think, you know, being able to take this class would really allow me to hone to zone in on, you know, this specific interest I wanted to explore more, um, or I’m really passionate about, um, Um, theater and performance.
Um, so, you know, I know that this school has, uh, awesome performance opportunities for students it’s really excites me. So definitely do your research show that, connect it to, um, yourself, but mostly just be prepared to talk about yourself. Okay, great. Um, this question right here is a little bit more like personalized, um, but it just says like, should you create.
Uh, website. So should you create your website, like a [00:44:00] home page and submit as a part of the application? Uh, no. Um, I don’t think again, kind of like a supplemental thing to add doesn’t hurt the application doesn’t necessarily help it either. I personally wouldn’t advise students to go through all that trouble.
Um, It’s kind of like sending a resume, like resumes are incredibly necessary, um, because everything that you’ve done, you should be able to succinctly communicate in the activity section of the common app or through your common app essay or through the additional information section or through your interview.
But have you, um, so I would say it’s not necessary. Um, if you’re really stressing about it, just don’t. Unless you really wants it for your own personal benefit. Like that’s, you know, totally up to you, but for the actual application, it doesn’t necessarily enhance. Okay. Great. All right. Well, I’m going to give you a second to take a breather from our, our [00:45:00] question and answers.
And I want to share with you all about CollegeAdvisor. So are you interested in working one-on-one with an advisor from our team of over 200 advisors in emission officers? So rally is an admission officer, and then I’m also one of the advisers that supports students sign up for a free consultation with us by going to CollegeAdvisor.com.
And clicking the green chat button in the right and the bottom right of the screen from there, just write in consultation and they lie. Team member will get back to you to help coordinate your free consultation with us. So if you’re still, you know, working on your applications and you need some additional support, Definitely, you know, there are, there’s a team of advisors that are ready and willing to support you.
All right. So now Riley, we will go back to the live Q and a. [00:46:00] And the next question that I have for you is, um, from our pre panel questions, uh, should I be following up with specific people within the college slash universe versus for the majors I’m interested in. That’s a really, really good question. Um, too, if you’re thinking about it in context of strengthening your application, it, again, it depends, I think, um, which is a horrible answer, but, um, it really does, depending on the school and you know, I, again speak mostly from a perspective of small.
So I’m selective liberal arts colleges, but you know, every school is different. Sometimes it’s really helpful to have that connection, like with a professor or a faculty member or, um, some sort of advisor at the college, um, to. You can maybe advocate for you, um, and send a note to the admission [00:47:00] office and say, Hey, I’ve had these awesome conversations, a coach, even as well.
Um, I’ve had these awesome conversations with this student. Um, this is what they’re interested in. They’d be a great fit for the program, especially if you’re thinking about majors and minors. Um, especially if you’re interested in something that’s not very popular at the college. Um, Uh, and something that’s a little bit more niche that would be a really good thing to do because they’re always trying to bolster some of those less popular programs.
Um, so I would say it definitely doesn’t hurt to, to reach out to them for your own benefit, of course. Um, you know, start fostering those relationships with professors. Should you get accepted? Um, but you know, in, in, in some cases they’d be able to send a note to the admission office. Okay. And speak on your behalf a little bit.
So I would, I would lean towards, yes. Um, definitely, you know, engaged with, with, um, some of those professors. Okay. [00:48:00] And next question I have, we have is, uh, what are appropriate things to include in an application update form on the portal? That is a great question. Um, I think anything that drastically affects your application is really important, um, to update, uh, people on, we’ve talked a lot about, you know, adding supplemental research papers or projects, essays, you know, um, awards that maybe you won a few applied to help try to bolster your applications.
But if you’ve had something really drastic happened to you after you submitted your application, that negatively impacts maybe your academic performance, um, especially in this time of COVID, um, you know, things are so influx and people are experiencing such unforeseen circumstances. Um, anything that might drastically, you know, affect your financial situation, [00:49:00] your grades.
Anything in your application in that way is important for the admission committee to know, um, just like how you would update them, maybe in the additional information section in the common app. Um, whereas your opportunity to provide context for anything in any application that you need to, um, God I’ve been Kushan, transferred schools, you know, all of that stuff.
Um, anything that, anything drastic like that I think would be important to update school. Not necessarily again, um, you know, the, either this research paper, but more the, this is something that happened to me. It’s important for you to know, to contextualize my application. Great. Great. All right. So this question comes from our live Q and a, um, it’s about the interviews.
How long at most does it take a university to contact you for an interview? So when will, when should I know that I will not like I didn’t get selected for an interview. [00:50:00] I’m not the best person to answer this question, unfortunately. Um, I’m really not sure. Um, I would assume, you know, obviously before mid December, if that’s, when they’re going to release their early decision decisions, uh, I would assume that they would want to have those interviews done by then.
Um, so that’s the best answer I can give. Unfortunately, I’m just not super familiar with, um, how other schools are, uh, go about that. Unfortunate. But I would peruse their website and see if there’s anything in the FAQ’s, um, even, even reach out to like their admission, um, email address, if you want to, um, just to just see if you can gather any, any information about that.
Okay. Um, and someone asks, um, how do they stay? How do you stay on track with all the applications that you have submitted any like resources or tools to help students with staying on track with the application? Yeah. [00:51:00] I’m uh, yeah, it can be really overwhelming and it can, it can seem like there’s a lot of moving parts.
I’m a huge fan of spreadsheets personally. Um, stay, you know, stay super organized, have one master spreadsheet for all of the schools that you’re applying to with a lot of different columns in terms of like, Submitted yes or no. Um, when did you submit it? When’s the application deadline? What supplemental materials do they require?
Uh, did you complete the supplemental materials? Do you have to work on them? Um, there are also functions in Excel and like Google sheets, um, And this is me nerding out here, but, um, conditional, um, properties where if you type in like a certain, um, letter or a certain character in the box, you can make it turn like a certain color or something like that.
So I like to do that with like yes or no, um, boxes like submitted, like as soon as you type in. Yes. If you have this [00:52:00] conditional. Um, that you’ve put in place, the box will light up in green. So it’s like a good visual cue of like, yeah, I’ve submitted this application, but I haven’t done this one. Um, so spreadsheets, I think are always a really good way to stay organized and stay on top of it.
Um, and yeah, I think that would be my, my best, my best. I agree with you. I can definitely get really geeked out with, um, utilizing Excel sheets and changing colors. And like you said, you type, they submit, it changes the color and you know, you’re creating tables. It’s it could get really cool. But I agree with you.
Create an Excel sheet so that you can keep track of it. Um, and then, you know, like, you know, when you’re hearing back from schools to, you know, also track that in your Excel sheet as well. Um, all right. So I think we have time for maybe one or two more questions. So, um, this one is pretty candid question, and I think it kind of ties back into what you’ve shared throughout your presentation.
So it just [00:53:00] reads like the title itself. Everything, you know, everything that I want to know about. Um, and so they just said, please give me your sincere advice about I applied now what the big question stay engaged with those schools that you applied to in a lot of different ways, be prepared to submit applications to other schools through later rounds.
In case early decision early action does not work out. The last thing you want to do is be scrambling last minute. Like a lot of my, a couple of my friends did in college who got deferred from early decision. Um, you know, winter break came around and they were scrambling to, to submit other applications, um, and keep up your academic performance.
Um, Really really important one. Um, uh, you know, just, just keep doing what you’re doing, keep working hard, um, because schools will be able to see, you know, what the rest [00:54:00] of your senior year looks like academically. So three big pieces of advice, three big key, uh, key takeaways, but also again, congratulate yourself.
It’s really a huge accomplishment to apply to college. So, um, Sure of yourself, some grace there and, uh, be able to pat yourself on the back as well. Great. Awesome. Um, okay. I have one more. I have one more question. Um, someone asks just like, do you, should I be choosing a major when I’m applying? Totally depends.
Again, it depends. Um, so. A lot of times, as I had mentioned in my introduction, uh, you know, I changed my majors a couple of times compared to what I put on my application. Um, a lot of schools, especially small liberal arts schools. Again, that’s really my, um, uh, the best perspective that I have to offer. Um, we don’t [00:55:00] necessarily take into consideration academic interests because we know that it’s likely to change, but it is still really important if you have a really nice.
Interest or if you are, you know, um, a woman in stem, uh, a student of color in stem, um, which are really important priorities for a lot of colleges. So, uh, I think there are ways to figure out like, oh, will I, should I put down, um, poly psy, uh, if that’s what I’m really interested in, like yeah, of course, like if you’re interested in it and you know, that’s what you want to do.
Like definitely. Um, but don’t. Pressure don’t feel pressured to put anything down, um, in the academic interests section. So many students are applying undecided these days. And I think the data, if I’m, if I read something correctly, the data is showing that more and more students are applying undecided, um, to specifically liberal arts schools.
So, um, it’s, it’s really, you know, something [00:56:00] that a lot of schools are seeing. And my experience, I would say roughly half of the students that I’ve read applied on this. So it’s really, you know, if, you know, go for it. I don’t feel pressured. Yeah. I was one of those undecided students. I’m still very undecided at times.
Um, I think when we set up have one question, someone asked this one and this is a pretty good general question, just to kind of wrap it up. They joined late and they just wanted you to go over the difference again, between early decision and early action. What’s the difference between. Of course, of course, it’s a great way to really sum it up early decision.
Typically as two rounds, early decision one and two, um, or at least as in one is typically the deadlines of November early decision to in early January. Typically those are typically binding, which means that if you apply through either ed one or EDU, You actually have to sign a contract in most cases, [00:57:00] um, the EDD agreement form, I think the common that provides, um, that says that you are committing to enrolling at that institution, if you are accepted through that, um, through that round.
So is a binding contract really important to withdraw. Any other applications that you’ve submitted to other schools, if you’re accepted through early decision, um, early action on the other hand, isn’t necessarily binding. Maybe isn’t some places, but my understanding is that, um, mostly it’s not, uh, it’s just an opportunity for you to apply early, um, and be one of the first applications that they read.
Not only get your decision back early. Um, just to, you know, if you’re ahead of the game, but also if you get why, if it’s a first choice school, um, but you don’t want to necessarily be bound by a contract. It might be a good idea to apply early action because there, you know, it’s not binding, but you still hear back early enough where you don’t have to, if you’re accepted, uh, you don’t have to worry about applying to other institutions as [00:58:00] well.
Um, so main difference is ed is binding early action. Yes. Well, thank you so much, Riley, for again, sharing your expertise as an admission officer and also sharing just your own personal experience from going through the application process with our participants tonight, uh, we really received. Really thank you for everything that you shared with us.
And with that, that is actually going to conclude the end of our webinar for this evening. Just wanted to share with everyone, our November webinars. So this is nearing the end of the November. We have one more webinar that we’re doing on the 21st, which is admission officer advice around basing the college interview.
So I know we had a few students who asked some questions about the interview. You definitely don’t want to miss out on this one and it’s happening on the 21st. We also have some really exciting December webinars for those who have already applied. There’s still [00:59:00] some great information. And then we have webinars, especially for our students who are in the grades nine through 11.
So again, thank you, everyone have a great evening. And that concludes our webinar. You’ve applied now with.