Pacing Your Final Sprint to College Application Deadline
Application deadlines are almost here! Join CollegeAdvisor.com as you prepare for the final sprint. Admissions expert Aliyah Turrentine will share tips and advice to plan ahead and finish strong for deadlines. This will be a 30-minute presentation followed by a 30-minute live Q&A.
In this webinar, you’ll have all your questions answered including:
– How early should I submit my applications?
– What can I do to prevent stress and worry at the end of the process?
Come ready to learn and bring your questions!
2022-11-02 – Pacing Your Final Sprint to College Application Deadlines
Hello everyone. Welcome to CollegeAdvisor’s Pacing Your Final Sprint to College Application Deadlines. To orient everyone with a webinar timing. We’ll start off with a presentation, then answer your questions in a live Q&A on the sidebar. You can download our slides and you can start submitting your questions in the Q&A tab.
Now, let’s meet our panel. Hi everyone. I am Aliyah Turrentine. Um, I’m from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, born and raised, and I went to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, um, and got my Bachelor of Arts in Hispanic Linguistics and Psychology back in 2016. And then I attended the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and graduated last May.
So go 49ers and go Tarheels. Um, and when I went there, I got my master of education in educational leadership or the concentration in, um, higher ed and a graduate certification and learning design and technology. All to say I can communicate with people in, um, different languages and I can work with adult learners and, um, help people in their professional development and growth.
Awesome. Thank you so much for sharing more about your background. So before we jump into the content of the presentation, I actually just launched the poll because we wanna get a sense of what great you are in. Um, so the results are actually in because I pressed star a little soon. So we actually have about.
I would say 57% of our attendees are in 11th grade, so they’re getting an early start. And then 43% are in the 12th grade. So we have 11th and 12th grade represented in your presentation. Hey, Um, oh, hold on. Let me. Okay, there you go. So two main college, um, application timeline. So this is gonna be really, uh, critical for my juniors and, uh, some of my seniors that’s on this call too, because usually your early action and your early decision, early decision application deadline falls between, um, October to mid-December.
So, October 15th is usually, uh, a well known date, as well as November the first. A lot of my seniors know that if you were applying early action, um, November the first, you all were working very, uh, well over the weekend to make sure that you had your final touches to your applications. So kudos to y’all.
Um, regular decision application deadlines are usually from about, uh, January to February. You may find a few that fall in that December timeframe. And, um, with that, known, You know, schools also allow an additional two weeks for your official transcripts and your, um, your standardized tests to come through.
So your SAT and your ACT scores, they will end up requesting official score reports. And you don’t have to worry about, Oh my God, everything was due on this day and I don’t have it in. Um, they do allow time for your school to send over your official transcript and for you to be able to request those from whichever standardized testing platform you, um, wanna send in.
So content that we need for our applications. You know, I know that this, this looks pretty daunting, but, uh, we gotta do it right and some of it is easy, you know, So once we get this one thing, we can go ahead and submit it to all those schools and then just work on the personalized touches. So some of the things that will be very easy for you to just go ahead and send over, you know, your SAT test score, your ACT test score.
Your resume can be the same for the different schools, your general application in like common. Your transcript residency application for some states and schools. Uh, your counselor recommendation letter and your teacher recommendation letters and your application fee waiver, if that applies to you. The things that you’re gonna wanna make sure that you’re adding your, uh, finishing touches on are gonna be that personal essay or the honors college application, um, and those supplemental essay questions.
Sometimes your personal essay can be the same for different schools. If it’s just a generalized application in the common app, and sometimes that’s gonna. And then you’ve also got your student portfolio. So that student portfolio can be, um, synonymous with your resume in some instances. I personally have my students do a resume because a lot of times colleges, uh, will have scholarships and things, then they will request a resume, or even on the common app, you can upload a resume and it just adds a polishing touch to your overall application material.
So, In terms of keeping track of, you know, what you have to do, you have the list, you know, which things are like, Oh, I can submit all of all of these to this school and this school and this school and this school. I can make sure every school gets this. I highly recommend using Google task. Um, you can use your CollegeAdvisor portal as well.
The Common Application, um, helps keep you organized and you know, your uh, Google Calendar too to help you figure out like, what have you done and what have you not done? I highly recommend the CollegeAdvisor portal. You know, they’ve done a lot of major updates over the past year to just make sure that it’s super user friendly.
Um, and I think that your CollegeAdvisor can also stay up to date on that, uh, and be able to like, you know, nudge you in your meetings and stuff based on what you’ve, uh, filled out.
So, um, in terms of staying organized for your workload, you know, I personally offer time management sessions with my students so that we can see like, What is our existing schedule like and where can we plug in college application materials? Where do we need to put our deadlines? So if a school has a set deadline of November 1st, let’s work backwards from that deadline and set personal deadlines so that by November 1st we’re not even up late at night trying to submit stuff because we’ve already.
Done it right. Um, so using Google Calendar is a big, big, big one or your Apple calendar, or if you’re someone that likes to write everything down, just having it on some kind of calendar that you can walk by and see it. Or, I like the fact that I can add notifications and stuff. Um, online, and so I share that with my students.
And then you can also create an Excel spreadsheet, you know, and you can have all different kinds of columns with every question that imaginable, that you can think of towards making sure that you’ve submitted the right in information. And then you can also make sure that you schedule times out to meet with the people that you need to meet with in advance.
I would say at least two weeks prior to your deadline, your advisor, the people that you want to be, your recommenders, your guardians. So whether that’s mom, dad, grandparents, family, friend, whoever your legal guardian is, and then even time to meet with your yourself, to really just make sure that you’re going over your checklist to make sure that you have everything that you.
So in terms of, you know, staying on top of your, um, Your early deadlines and still working on later deadlines, you’re gonna wanna prioritize your schools based on deadlines, right? So make sure that when you do this, you look at what schools you want to apply early action to. A lot of times the student will decide to apply early action to a particular school because that school.
Has scholarships where you have a better opportunity or a better chance to get in a scholarship if you apply early action, or it’s only offered during early action, and so you want to make sure that that’s the school that you’re applying early action to so that you can get put into the pot of students that are eligible for those scholarships.
And then when you’re doing that, you also wanna make sure that you’re chunking your to-do so. I’ve said I think at least three times. So if you haven’t written this down, I would make sure that you write this down. Making sure that you’re sending a transcript to each and every school, your test scores, to each and every school.
Personal statement, resume your profile questions, recommendation letter requests, making sure that all of that is filled out, because those are all things that are gonna have to be done for each and every application that you were submitting, especially if it’s through the. Different states also have some, um, applications where you don’t have to submit essays, you know, and that’s fine too.
You just have to do the generalized, um, portion of the, the application. But with that, I will also say, um, something that ha I’ve seen come up in terms of test scores. Students will ask, um, Ms. T, you know, I just wanna submit this. This one test, uh, because I wanna submit this one score. Do I have to submit all of my score reports?
Well, it depends. Are you submitting in terms of a super score? And if so, submit all the scores that you’re wanting to be a part of that super score.
Are we ready to move on to the poll? Okay. Alrighty. So let’s take a short little pause cause we wanna get a sense of where you are in the college application process. So let us know. Perhaps you haven’t started, actually, let me reset that. Okay. So perhaps you haven’t started, maybe you’re researching, working on essays.
Let us know where you are at. Right. And then while we’re waiting for the responses to come in, we got a question, and I think this kind of connects to what you’re already speaking about. How many letters of recommendation, um, have you seen schools ask for, like on average? Um, two to four. So they usually want a letter of recommendation from your counselor.
So if you don’t know your counselor, go ahead and schedule an appointment to meet your counselor. Uh, oftentimes your counselor will also ask you to submit some.
as May or a student
Can you hear me? Yeah, we can hear you now. You wanna repeat? Repeat the answer? Yes. I don’t know why my internet is lagging, but if you all lose me, I promise I will call in on my phone. We can hear you now though. You’re good. Okay. Um, so what I was saying is that, you know, make sure that you have your resume or your student, uh, portfolio ready to submit to your recommenders so that they can really speak on the things that you’re wanting to highlight in your application.
Um, and then. In terms of the other two, there are usually two core teachers. So you know your English, math, science, history type teacher and maybe an elective teacher if they’re asking up to four or even, um, someone in your community, depending on what you’re applying for, um, or the school that you’re applying to.
Great. Thank you. Thank you. For those who didn’t catch the question, um, uh, Aliyah was just a, answering the question around what, on average, how many recommendation letters are asked. Okay. So back to the poll, uh, where you are in the application process. So we have. 34% are researching schools, 24% haven’t started.
20% are working on their essays 12% getting their application material together, and we have the mighty 10% that are almost done. Okay. So I, Yeah, that’s great. That’s a good feeling when you’re almost at that finish line. Okay. So I will turn it back over to you to continue with the presentation. Thank you.
Um, for those of you that are getting your school list together, please lean into your support for that because you wanna make sure that you’re having a safety match and a reach or in some long reach schools on that list, okay? That way, you know, you’re bound to get in somewhere. Um, maybe some scholarship funds as well.
Um, and you’re speaking with a professional that’s able to help you navigate.
So steps that we should take in the last, um, week before submitting your application. Woo. So read over your application carefully. You know, um, I highly recommend reading aloud your essays, anything that you had to type, read it out loud because you’re more than likely going to catch those typos you’re going to catch where you may need to add punctuation, all those things, and then pass it off to an adult to.
Okay. And you also wanna make sure that you’re engaging with the admissions office. So if you’ve had any questions about the major, maybe you reached out to, um, an advisor that advises students in that major. They can also help you connect with some professors or alumni, and they’ll also have an open house that you can potentially attend so that you can also meet people in person.
And then make sure that you practice self care. Like this is a long process that you’ve worked very hard for, um, to get to where you are. And so make sure that you have, um, exercised some mental health and self care because it is truly important. And then, The next thing after you’re done with those things, you can work on your honors college applications, scholarships, you know, um, you’re probably gonna find more national scholarships during the fall and more of your, um, local scholarships in the spring.
But, you know, in your community, they may be offering some of the local scholarships in the fall as well. You wanna make sure that you go to your scholarship coordinator or to your counselor to be able to find out more information about. And then engage with some of the active students. Sometimes schools have like informal interviews with uh, students and stuff like that, or they have formal interviews that you can sign up for.
Go and interact with people. Let them know who you are, you know, and you can ask them about their experience there. That way you can really see if this school’s gonna be a good fit for you.
In the last 48 hours, make sure that you review your checklist. To ensure that everything is done, make sure that you review your application again and that your essays are read aloud at least twice. If you haven’t heard, I’ve said it at least three times today. Make sure you read your material out loud, it’s so important.
And then make sure that you’re reaching out to your recommenders. . Okay. So you wanna make sure that your recommendation letters have been submitted prior to submitting your application as a whole. So you may need to go and nudge them and also make sure that when you do that, that you express gratitude.
So a handwritten thank you card, or you could go to Starbucks and get like a gift card because people love coffee and tea, Um, or whatever it is that you want to do to express gratitude for them. Taking the time out to be able to write that on your. And you can also send an email, um, or just walk up to them and say, Hey, like, I really, really appreciate the fact that you did that for me.
And then you relax because you finally made it to that, that point. So that 10% almost done. Y’all are almost relaxing. Everybody else, y’all are gearing up.
So, um, in terms of pacing yourself during the process, plan ahead, you know, so that you have room for flexibility. So that’s going back to that Google calendar or the Apple calendar that we talked about and really mapping out your stuff. Um, so maybe. You’re setting multiple deadlines for your first draft on your essay.
Maybe you didn’t meet the first one, but you’re able to meet the second one. But all of those deadlines are prior to when you’re supposed to hand that essay off to someone to review, like your CollegeAdvisor. Um, make sure that you’re communicating with your advisor to assist. Do not wait until the weekend.
for that delivers and your recommenders, you wanna make sure that you pause, um, and communicate so, They’re able to best assist you and then set notifications on your technology devices. It is so important. Make sure that you are reminding yourself if you know that you pick up your phone every single morning that you have those notifications to just help remind you like, Hey, I got a goal and I gotta reach it.
I gotta do this thing. And then engage your family. You know, have them be a part of the process with you. I was first gen, you know, and it was a process. It took the family to navigate the process with me.
So, Okay. I think I’m trying to X me out so that I can see my screen. Oh no. Okay. Nevermind. I can’t. All right. Well, yeah, so it keeps moving me above my, uh, my little header , but now it just moved me back down below , so it’s fine. Um, in terms of the experience with the application timeline, um, you know, this is.
The community of your family really comes in or community of your peers. So I had a very engaged mother. Um, so she was like, Hey, you know, like college applications are coming up, you know, like, what are you thinking about? Where are you wanna go? And things like that. But that’s not the case for everybody.
And so if you don’t have an engaged family in terms of college, because maybe they don’t know about the process, they don’t know about the timeline, or they’ve never gone so they don’t know. For you. Um, just try to loop them in. So when you’re hearing those announcements in school, when you’re seeing those things on social media, I feel like as soon as you say college, you’re about to get 50 ads on Facebook and Instagram about that coming up.
And even TikTok, a lot of stuff about college and stuff is on TikTok, just saying, So y’all can’t say you didn’t know because it’s out. Um, but engage people so that they’re able to be a part of this process with you. Complete your application profile. Go ahead and answer those general questions that you do know and ask for support on the ones that you don’t, and make sure that you complete the FAFSA Seniors.
FAFSA was due started on October 1st. If you have not completed it, you a little bit behind and I need you to go ahead and complete that because you wanna make sure that you’re eligible for. So that schools are able to, um, put that, those kinds of funds in your financial aid package Okay. That you’ll be getting, uh, most likely in the spring.
And then reach out about transcripts and create a to-do list and. You know, have a scholarship packet, whether you created your advisor, creates it, someone else created, my mom created mine. I also maintained my own to-do list, and I had to reach out to my school about my transcripts. So, you know, that was just a part of my own process in navigating all of this.
But I had the support because I allowed the support to come in and for me to be able to utilize them.
So advice that I would give a student pacing themselves to complete all of your applications. First and foremost, you’ve got this and you know that you’ve got this because you wouldn’t be where you are today if you didn’t have some kind of confidence about being able to do it. And if you’re struggling on a few pieces, if you’re frustrated about a few, Pieces.
Just make sure that you lean in on your support system. That’s what they’re there for. The adults that are at your school, they’ve gone to college, um, most likely, especially your teachers, and they’ve had to go through this process too. And you’re not alone. That’s the other piece that’s so important for you to remember.
You’re not alone in this process. And so talk to your peers. See what things are working for them. What works for one person may not work for the next, and just make sure that you’re checking in with yourself, you’re allocating time to this process, and that you’re pacing yourself, and that you’re allowing yourself to be flexible and give grace to yourself.
Okay. Thank you Miss Aliyah. So we are now gonna move into our questions and answers. So how it’s gonna work is I am going to read the questions that you have added into our Q&A. Thank you to those who’ve already started to, um, ask questions. Feel free to ask as many questions as you, as you would like, and we will do our best to get to them all.
I will read the question out loud and then I’ll place it into the public chat for you to be able to see it, and then our, um, presenter will answer the question. So our first question, Is, I heard that you should send a brag sheet to recommenders. Is that true? Um, and then they added, because I also know that letters are rec are mostly to show the personality side of applicants.
So that’s a good question. That brag sheet is the equivalent of what I call a resume. You know, so you’re bragging on your experience, what you have done, um, what you have accomplished. , like what has helped you become who you are thus far. Now, counselors may add some additional questions, um, in the material that they require in order to write your letter of recommendation to just make it more personable.
But, um, that brag sheet is essentially, you know, your your resume and you wanna spend time on that and make sure that you’re highlighting the things that you want them to highlight in that recommendation later.
Okay, so this question reads, can I apply to schools without my letters a recommendation written? So it depends on the school and the school’s application. So, um, if the school requires a letter of recommendation, then. You know, you need to get those letters of recommendation and otherwise your application is considered incomplete.
However, if the school does not ask or require letters of recommendation, and they’re optional, yeah, you sure can. Great. Okay, so this question reads, um, no, how do I, how do, how do I balance school activities with submitting applications? So that’s where that Google calendar is really gonna come into place.
Um, you wanna make sure, So I sat down with one of my students, uh, at the end of last week, and they’re into some clubs. They work, they’ve got school, they’re, you know, doing, um, Like early college and things like that. And so it really boiled down to what do you do in your day to day? Sit down with your calendar and map out what your day to day is.
And when you normally have stuff and set, um, you can set reoccurring, uh, events and stuff so that you can see it throughout the month. And then you wanna go in and see where do you have gaps. And I mean, when we plan this out, we even put. When was a student gonna sit down and map out their calendar for the week?
When was this student going to sit down and eat for dinner, have breakfast when they’re getting ready for school, getting ready for bed? Because then you get to see where do you really have blank open spaces of time to hone in on your college applications? And so it worked that way, but it takes a matter of you really sitting down and and saying like, Hey, I really do have this time and I need to just go ahead and pencil this in and sticking.
Okay. I think before I was getting ready to speak, was there something that you were gonna, you were gonna say Aaliyah? I had saw, someone had posted a, um, question about how they can apply if they can apply without s a t scores. And, um, you can, for some schools, some schools will say that, uh, standardized testing is completely optional, especially with the big wave from the.
Covid 19, you know, and so some schools will say you can submit your SAT or ACT and they will be considered, or you don’t have to. And that’s perfectly fine. Yes. Thank you for answering that. Um, this question reads, can you speak to the honors apps, depending on colleges, how much additional data and requirements do honors programs request from?
Um, so it depends, You know, you may be applying to an honors college that wants sample, uh, submissions of, you know, your writing or any research that you may have been a part of when you were in high school. I Um, they may have outlined what additional materials that they want you to submit. They may request to a resume.
They may, um, ask you to get an additional letter of recommendation from a community member from something you’ve been engaged in. Or if you’ve done any kind of scholar presentations or anything, you may wanna highlight those two. Every honors, uh, college application is going to. And so, um, sometimes even your standard application will get submitted to the Honors College, uh, at that school and they’ll reach out to you and see if you’re interested, you know, So it, it really depends.
And that’s just at some schools.
Okay, thank you. So we’re gonna take a short pause for me to share with you all about CollegeAdvisor. So for those in the room who aren’t already working with us, we know that the college admission process is overwhelming for parents and students alike. Our team of over 300 former admission officers and admission experts are ready to help you and your family navigate it all in one-on-one advising session.
And last year’s admission cycle, our students were accepted into Harvard at three times the national rate and accepted to Stanford at 4.4 times the national rate. Sign up for a free consultation with us by registering for our free web platform at app.CollegeAdvisor.com, and we also have the QR code here that you can scan on your mobile device.
Um, and that will give you the link to be able to schedule that free consultation. So during that meeting, you’ll have the opportunity to explore, learn more about our program, our what we offer, um, and then also on our website you can explore additional webinars. You can keep track of application deadlines, research schools, and so much more on our website and a lot of that.
To the information that Aaliyah was sharing in the presentation. Okay. So with that, we will move back into our Q&A and the cure code will be right there for you to still scan it. Okay? So next question is, what suggestions do you have for getting parents involved in the process? So, With my students, um, we usually will have a kickoff call, uh, in our process where I will meet the student and their guardian.
Um, and we’ll talk about what the student is interested in, what they have done, what the parent. Um, feels like where they feel like they are in the process and, uh, their knowledge and stuff and how they like to be looped in, whether that’s via email about what we’ve done, being able to look at our notes, tuning in to some meetings.
Um, they can share college lists that they think would be beneficial for their child, um, as well as the student and what things they think, you know, I should take into account when thinking about the student’s. Um, college list and things like that. You can also, you know, when we work on your, um, your college list, I usually will have, uh, the students submit a college list and the parent to submit a college list.
And I’ll look at both of them, um, to be able to see, you know, are there any parallels and that where there aren’t any parallels, you know, I bring us all into a conversation and I say, you know, like, can you give me the why as to why you su, why you suggested this school for yourself, or why the, uh, guardians suggest that.
That school for the, um, child. And there’s usually, you know, a column on the spreadsheet that we work from, um, where they’re able to give. And then, you know, having a sense of understanding of what the child’s values are and making sure that the, the schools that they’re thinking of and that they’re presenting are in alignment with those values as well as in alignment with, you know, who they are and where they are in terms of competitiveness and the application process and the sense of understanding.
So, You know, outside of the, the college list, you know, we talk about financial things like the financial aid, um, application. We talk about scholarships, we talk about time management, and being able to have your guardian help you be accountable for where you are in your process and continue to move forward.
as well as, you know, words of affirmation while you’re along the process. Sometimes, you know, we can feel like we’re in just go mode. We gotta go, go, go, go, go and do, do do, do, do that. We don’t sit back and say like, Hey, like you wrote an awesome essay, like, this was really cool. Or even sharing those things with your guardians, you know, it’s, they wanna be able to see that they wanna be a part of the process and so the more that you’re opening, you allow them to be the better.
Okay. Thank you for providing that information. Uh, next question reads, on average, how many colleges should I send applications to? So that’s really, um, up to you. Uh, I usually have my students start with 12 to 15. Um, sometimes our, I think the biggest college list that I have seen was about 62. Oh wow.
Really? Yes. Oh yes. And it grew. Um, that was just the initial look. And then when we really sat down and thought about what our values were
We can hear you now. Okay. I stopped soon as I saw it. I don’t know what’s going on. But soon as um, you know, we looked at our values and the vision and the mission statement of the different schools, we realized were they in alignment or are they not in alignment? Do they offer the major, do they not offer the major?
Um, is our student profile. Um, You know, competitive with their previous accepting class, student profile, excuse me. You know, And so just making sure that a school is really a good fit and is checking off your check boxes. So just as much as you wanna check off their check boxes, you wanna make sure that they’re checking off your check boxes.
So you end up narrowing it down to 12 to 15 schools, no matter how high you end up. Um, you know, shooting for that student that had over 62 schools. Probably, I think in the end submitted about nine. So yeah, it was, it was interesting and they were amazed to see how, you know, things were going off. And when you realize how many essays you’re also having to write you, you’re starting to think more strategic about your time and what you can really invest into the process.
Great. Awesome. Um, next question. Reads. We might touch on this a little, but can I add in my letters erect after the application deadline? Did we go into that question already? Uh, after the application deadline. No, it’s the letters of recommendation are all a part of the application materials that you need to meet the deadline.
Otherwise, if you submit anything afterwards, it will be rolled into their next, um, you know, phase. So if it was early action, you’ll, your application will get rolled into regular decision. If it’s regular decision, um, they may end up then doing just on a rolling basis. Okay. Uh, so next question reads, Please provide a brief overview of deciding on early decision acceptance versus deciding to commit early decision acceptance proc Oh, versus, sorry, my bad.
Versus deciding not to commit to early decision acceptance process. How does that enhance your admissions into specific schools? So, um, I have. One student this year that has chosen to do early decision, and it was because. When we looked at, and I, I really emphasize this, you know, that student’s vision, their values, the school’s, uh, mission and their values and seeing if they were a close enough fit in terms of the overall students profile and what they were looking for, um, as well as the competitiveness.
Um, and just feeling like that school was home. Also, even tours, whether it’s a virtual or in-person tour and being able to connect and everything. That student ultimately decided early decision because they said, You know, that is where I am absolutely going. Like when I get accepted, that’s where I’m going.
We had already looped in parents on the conversation to see what the thoughts were, um, and I fully supported it. The student has a really good chance at being able to be accepted into that school, applying early decision. Um, and they wrote an amazing essay to go with their materials. And so it’s a waiting game now.
Um, but it shows a student like one. Early on in this process, I know exactly what it is that I want and I’m ready to commit. You know? Um, and upon being accepted at this school, I will commit to your school. It doesn’t mean that you don’t apply to other schools, but it’s that if you end up getting accepted into that school, you’ve already committed to going there.
Okay, so this next question reads, um, what suggestions do you have on navigating the application process during the holiday season? You have so much time, you know? Um, Start looking at the, the essay questions that they’re asking of you. Start thinking about what teachers you want to have recommend you, um, you know, how did you perform in their class?
Did they get a chance to really see who you are and, and really hone in on your character as a person? You know, did you face any adversity in their class and you were able to grow from it? Can they speak to that? Can they speak to your resiliency? Being able to balance back, um, after whatever adversity, adversity it was that you faced in their classroom, whether it was just really grasping the content at hand, um, and really taking the initiative to go to their office hours or maybe something personal, you know.
Also, you know, creating like application drive groups with your friends. Like you can do that and you all can work together. You know, I remember when I was applying to schools, uh, I think my mom for scholarships, my mom. Did like this whole, uh, packet for us to be able to look at scholarships and apply, and we all did it around the table, so we were encouraging one another as well, and it was beneficial, just like you can do when you’re studying for your standardized tests and stuff.
If you see that you need to retake a standardized test, go ahead and apply to retake it. Go ahead and sign up for that. Um, go ahead and see what your superstore would be. Work on your resume. See if you can do some, um, activities over, you know, that break time. How can you get involved in your community to be able to add to your resume?
Have you requested a transcript so that you can see what your current GPA is? Maybe you didn’t wanna apply to early action, um, because you’re waiting for your grades to come in to be able to enhance your GPA overall. You know, that’s a great time to really ask yourself those questions and to create that plan.
And also, you know, carving time out in your calendar. Um, maybe even spending time with your friends because you know that you’re about to be super busy and so you have no excuses. Once you know those application deadlines start rolling in. Yeah. Yeah. And then I’ll just kind of add to that as well around the letters of recommendation.
Just getting the early start, making sure you look at what is required for your application, and do not wait to do that while you’re on your holiday break. Mm-hmm, because you don’t wanna get into a sticky situation where you need a counselor recommendation or a teacher recommendation. And your teachers and counselors, they’re human.
They’re enjoying their holiday, they’re much needed holiday break. So definitely make sure you are familiarizing yourself with the entire application, especially areas that you’re gonna need counselors and teachers to support you with because they may not be able to support you during that holiday season.
Mm-hmm. Okay, So next question. Uh, would you. Okay, so this is about letter recommendations. Would you recommend asking for letters of rec from teachers who teach a subject outside of your intended major? If that’s what you want to go with, and they can speak to who you are as a person? Absolutely. because some students are applying to college and they’re undecided, you know?
And so a letter of recommendation from any of your teachers is valuable, and it’s vital to your application. And just because you don’t know if you wanna go into the science field or the math field or something like that, . It doesn’t mean that your English teacher can’t write you a phenomenal, um, letter of recommendation.
Uh, it doesn’t mean and vice versa. You know, if you know that you put your all into a class and you had a growth mindset and your teacher really got to know you and can speak on that on your behalf, then I would say ask them for that letter of recommendation. Absolutely. Yeah, and I’ll just add one note into that cuz I just experienced this with a student.
Um, this is, again, understanding what is being asked of you from the application. There are some schools, based on the major, they will require you to receive a letter recommendation from a particular subject. Like a teacher who teaches a particular subject. So for example, I have a student who is just did an application for nursing and the college required her to have a letter of recommendation from a science and math teacher.
So it’s always those kind of like asterisk marks, areas that come up too. Um, that kind of catches by surprise as CollegeAdvisors. Um, but just adding onto that, like making sure you do familiarize yourself with the application in case there’s those, those little fine print. Let’s have a letter from this person, but generally you can, you can work with any teacher.
Yeah. And I just wanted to add that cuz I just experienced that. Yeah. I mean, it’s true. Yeah. Uh, so next question. This is, as a junior in high school, what preparations for this process can we do now? Grades. Keep your grades up to date, please. You know, I know that it’s easy to kind of start to fill the burnout, you know, towards the end of the year, but finish strong.
Junior years. GPA is the one that you’re submitting if you’re applying to schools in the fall. Um, So you wanna make sure that it’s as high as you can get it, because GPA does still play a factor, even for schools to have a holistic view. They’re still gonna look at that gpa, right? If you can add some volunteer work, some activities, you know, bump that up, I would go ahead and start doing that in your junior year.
Look even at what kind of scholarships are reoccurring in your community so that you can see what they’re requiring so that you can go ahead and start preparing those materials for when you want to apply to that scholarship. You can, um, look at some of the essay questions that are being asked on the common app.
I want to say that, every question remained the same from last year’s seniors on the common app to this year’s seniors on the common app. So you could start mapping out that process. And I will say, you know, this isn’t, Like college application specific related, but it’s essay related. Figure out how to create an outline for an essay and have the outline reviewed first before you begin to write.
I oftentimes. See where a student has wasted their time writing an essay, but it’s so over the place that I have to ask them to provide me with an outline. And when they start doing the outline, they realize that their essay is over the place and it’ll basically happen to rewrite, which is double the time that they.
Ended up having to do versus if they had submitted an outline first. Um, you can also start talking to your teachers about those letters of recommendation to see who may be willing to write you those letters of recommendation come senior year when you’re applying. Uh, you can also decide to go to your local community college and take some classes over the summer if you are wanting to take some college courses.
Uh, or if they’re gonna be offered in the spring, the fall or the spring of your junior year, to give you some of that college credit so that you won’t have to take them when you get to college. I was not a super math person, so I took my classes while I was in high school so that I would not have to do it when I got to college, or I only ended up just having to take one class.
Um, and. I like, um, I agree with you also about everything you said, but especially the outline of your essay before you begin writing it. Um, I’ve had experience where a student knew what they wanted to write about and we did the outline and it allowed me to ask more probing questions, and then she came to another realization of how she wanted.
Approach the essay. So the outlines are, are a great strategy. Thank you for adding that. Um, so next question. So after listening to various webinars, it seems that undecided majors are not really, are not favorable. What if, what if, what if I’m interested in two to three majors but haven’t quite finalized the decision By the time college apps come for senior.
Should I, should I list both majors or pick one? Um, if you have the option of knowing at least two of the majors that you’re interested in, I would list both of them, um, on your application. It doesn’t hurt. There’s also absolutely nothing wrong with being undecided. You know, there are so many times where students are applying to schools and they have no clue what it is that they want to go to school for, but that’s what school’s for.
They have elective courses for you to kind of figure out what it is that you like and what you dislike, um, as well as clubs and activities. I, uh, have my students take, uh, I think it. Mm, three to four, uh, assessments that they can take. And we’ll go over the results and they submit like how the results made them feel, if they agree, disagree, as well as different majors they can look into.
Um, when we start, after our kickoff call, actually, to just get their brains flowing about opportunities and what they can do. And, you know, based on some of the stuff that came out in their personality and how they answered the questions, what seemed to really work, um, where that was very fitting for. But there’s, there’s no problem with submitting an application and being undecided about your major because did you know that during the process of college, most people at least changed their major three times?
I know I at least changed my major twice. And those assessments, I think that, um, the ones that I send my students are through Yale, so I’ll just look up, um, assessments for, uh, Students who don’t know what it is that they want to do.
Okay, we’ll go to the next question. Um, how can you know if a college specifically has what major you want and everything you believe you will need for it? How do you know if a school will have everything that you want and what you’ll, and know if, if they have what you’ll need for it? You can go and look at their programs of study and look at what kind of courses you’ll have to take.
You can connect with some of the professors, the advisors of that school, some of the students that are also taking that major, um, and see if it’s in alignment with what it is that you’re looking for. Because some, not all schools carry the same majors.
Okay. Uh, next question. Can colleges help you after graduating if you need internships, um, and certain tests to take in what field you’re going into. Yeah. So, um, I know that when I went to Carolina, I think you still received assistance up to a year after graduation from the career services, uh, department.
And they would help you with resumes, they’d help you with finding internships, they’d help you, um, with connecting with alumni and all kinds of stuff. So, absolutely, you know, it’s a pipeline, like once you’ve gone to college, you’re likely to follow, find yourself into different groups and stuff that will help you navigate that entire process and be able to ask question.
Um, it’s also how I’ve grown my LinkedIn. I also recommend LinkedIn for high school students that are getting ready to go to college too, uh, to go and, you know, put yourself out there and connect with people. Great. Okay, so next question is about letters of recommendation. Lots of questions about letters of rec today.
Uh, what is the timeframe when students should reach out to teachers or counselors for a letter of recommendation? And can it be taken in the student’s junior year that can you get a letter maybe in your junior? You could potentially get a teacher to write a letter in your junior year, but until your senior year where you know where you’re going, what it is that you’re wanting to do, have some idea or able to also share what you did over the summer that they could probably highlight or speak to.
I would wait, but I could. You would, you could ask them your junior year and then follow back up at the beginning of your senior year and send them an email. Um, if push comes to shove, I would at least ask the teacher, uh, six to eight weeks prior to a deadline to see if they even have the capacity to be able to do so.
Because you gotta think about it. You are one student and there are however many other students that are also applying to school that need letters of recommendation too. So the earlier, the better. Mm mm. Yes. Get an early start on asking for that letter. I, next question reads.
Okay, so this is kind of similar. Um, is asking a teacher for a letter of rec about a month before, um, before my first deadline, too late? Can you repeat the beginning of that question? Yes, absolutely. It’s asking a teacher for a letter rec about a, a month before my first deadline. Absolutely. Um, so I just answered that question.
Mm-hmm. , um, I would say it is too late because they may not have the ability to be able to do that for you. Uh, and I have seen teachers turn students away because they just don’t have the capacity. Yes, yes, yes. So get that early start, I’m asking for those letter recommendations. It will put your recommender at ease and most importantly, you will be at.
Let’s see. So someone asked like, Where can I find those assessments? I think that’s, Is that something that you referenced? Mm-hmm. Yeah, I talked about Yale. Um, being I think the, the hub for the one that I use, and those are free as well as Google. You can go on Google and, um, they have some on there where you can just say, you know, assessment, college assessments, personality assessments for college, things like that for you to help your, to help determine, you know, a major or majors that you may be interested.
Okay, next question.
Okay. So this, this question I’m gonna kind of paraphrase a little bit, but um, what advice do you have for just eighth graders who are, you know, getting ready to go into high school and wanna be able to just stay focused in high school? Any advice you can give? Yes. I used to work with eighth graders first and foremost, congratulations to you for getting to the top of your class.
Um, and I would say that, you know, eighth grade is a special, special time. Right. Um, and, um, Oh, sorry. I think there’s dinging going on over here, so, My students that were going to eighth grade, you know, we talked about time management, we talked about getting to know your teachers. We talked about making sure that we had our homework down, that we’re utilizing an agenda in a way that works for us, that we are studying, um, and keeping focus, you know, throughout that process.
And so, um, it was really critical to. Just trying to set yourself up for success even, and making sure that you take notes and learning how to take notes. I highly recommend Cornell Notes style taking. It’s been embedded in my head. I still take Cornell Notes style, uh, notes, and, you know, keeping your parents in the loop, um, or your guardians in the loop of what’s going on so that you know you’re not having to wait and give like a two hour spill on everything that you know might not be going right when you could have spoken up earlier and receive the help that you needed.
Okay. Well, it looks like that was our last question. Thank you everyone for. asking those phenomenal questions. And thank you, Aaliyah, for sharing this content in regards to just the college application process and even getting an early start as you rated going to high school. Oh. Um, and so with that, the last thing I wanna share with you all is our.
Upcoming webinars. So every month we are gonna be offer, actually every week we are offering a different webinar. Everything is geared towards supporting you through the college application process. Um, and so here’s the list. We’ll have some more that are gonna be coming up for December. And with that, everyone, thank you so much for joining us.
Have a great evening. Good night. Good night. Thank y’all. Bye. Good luck.