Should I Apply Early Action or Early Decision?
Join CollegeAdvisor.com for Should I Apply Early Action or Early Decision?, a 60-minute webinar and Q&A, featuring former Admissions Officer Amber Lewis. Amber will share insight into the pros and cons of applying early, as well as the different types of early applications. Come ready to learn and bring your questions!
2022-06-07 Should I Apply Early Action or Early Decision?
[00:00:00] Hello everybody. How are you? I know I can’t get a response, but this is as much as I can engage in a virtual environment. So excited to know that you’re there tonight. Welcome again. We’re going to be speaking about, Should I Apply Early Action or Early Decision? So just to orient everyone with the 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.
, I will go ahead and introduce myself and we will get started. So, as you can see here, my name is Amber Lewis. I graduated from Stanford class of 2018. I studied international relations.
I minored in modern [00:01:00] languages. Um, what that means basically I studied Spanish and Portuguese as a minor, um, fun fact. I actually got to translate in the Rio 2016 Olympics, and that’s something that I love. Um, ultimately I chose that major because I love connecting with people and being able to speak other languages just gives me access to connect with more people.
Um, I’m also a former admissions at Stanford University and I am currently one of the four Associate Director of Admissions at CollegeAdvisor.com. So I’m really excited to be here, to actually get to talk with you tonight. Um, so I hope you’ll be patient with me as I engage and ask questions and make this as interactive as possible even though I can’t see you.
Um, so speaking of being interactive, I’d love to start off with this poll. So, what grade are you in with? My lovely colleague. We’ll open up that whole. Thank you. Um, so we’ll give you some time to answer there, but in the meantime, we’d just love to share a little bit about my time on real, just some fun facts while you’re listening.
Um, yeah, so I had the wonderful [00:02:00] opportunity while I was a student at Stanford university to be one of four students, um, selected to apply to go down there. Um, I spoken Spanish since I was around four years old. And so learning Portuguese was just that much easier, but it was just much more fun, um, to continue to learn that language.
And so to be able to translate between English and Portuguese and Spanish and Portuguese was just wonderfully fun. Um, and yeah, just, just a little fun fact that they’re on here before we get started with the material. I think we’ll close out this poll in a moment. Um, it can. Awesome. And then let’s see what happened with that.
What are, what our results are here? You can.
Okay. So let’s.
Okay. So it looks like we have 0% in eighth grade. So we’re talking to all [00:03:00] high schoolers here, maybe a parent, cause I see one submitted other, so we have 13% of you are in a freshmen, so you’re getting started early. Awesome. Uh, we have another 13% of you who are in 10th grade, so sophomores and then 38% of you are juniors.
So you’re right in the thick of it. You’re feeling college admissions that’s coming. And then we have the 33% that are seniors with that 4%, a 4%, not 1%, excuse me of the other. So if that’s a parent, I welcome you all here. I’m excited to continue with our presentation. So would love to just jump right into it tonight.
Um, here, you’ll see the two made admissions umbrellas that we’re going to be getting into tonight. So there’s early, which is going to have several other categories. So you see those several letters in the acronym that I’ll be expounding upon tonight. And then we have regular discs. And so for early action, that’s one of the umbrellas that includes your restrictive early action, which is also more or less interchangeable with single choice [00:04:00] early action.
You see the SCA there and we’ll be getting more into each of these throughout the slides. And then we have early decision and you’ll occasionally see something called early decision too, but that is much rare, but it is still an option if you do see that. So our deadlines for our earlier application pools are typically going to be in October and November.
Um, that ed to that very rare pool you’ll typically see the deadline is around January one, which is the typical deadline for your regular decision, which is that second large umbrella of applications. And so the majority of students applying to college will be applying to college, regular decision.
That’s the deadline that if you’re somewhat familiar with, with when students apply to college, that’s the deadline. You’re probably most familiar with that. January one, majority of common application schools. So when it comes to regular decision there, aren’t going to be any stipulations or restrictions or financial aid implications.
And applying during that decision plan. When most students apply and we’ll be able to get into the advantages, the [00:05:00] considerations potential drawbacks would be through these plans throughout our time together tonight. And then of course, with deadlines, again, this is your typical January one deadline, but there are some late December deadlines.
You’ll see most of them between late December and January 5th. And then you’ll have a few stragglers here with deadlines and February and March. I also want to note that rolling admissions is a decision plan. It is not as common, but it does exist. And what that basically means is that schools will continue to accept applications until they satisfied their requirements until they fulfill their class size.
And so that is another kind of application planet is not as common, but it is also out there. And just want to make sure you have exposure to that and are aware of that. So let’s look at the early action plans first, starting with a single choice, early action or restrictive early action. Because that is such a mouthful.
I’ll be starting it to restrict a really action from here on out. So with early action, you’re going to get used to this language. I have binding a non-binding. So for nonbinding, that means that you’re not [00:06:00] bound in a sense that you can apply to any other public institution. Um, And any other private institution, you comply to any other institution early.
Um, and it doesn’t mean that if you get admitted, you have to go to that school. And so applying early action is, is an option that I’ll get more into the benefits later on. Um, but it’s something that you’ll see commonly for schools like MIT, Ohio state, or the Ohio standards. You’ll see for those who are alumni there, you have Spelman college and I have both there because Spelman college also has an early decision plan option, and an early action plan option.
And I’ll get into early decision in a moment. Then you also have UNC. So you’re tar heels from North Carolina, um, and UVA, which also again has early action and early. Option plans. So now we’re going to get into the single choice early action and restrictive early action. And this is where things can get a little bit jumbled.
So I’m going to use examples because even when we were [00:07:00] giving presentations at Stanford in the admissions office, this is where we got most of the questions and understandably so, so restrictive early action. Again, shortening it for the mouthful. This is also non-binding meaning if you get admitted, you don’t have to go.
But what this means is that here you can apply to other public institutions and you can apply to regular decision two additional private university. So for example, if I applied to Stanford restrictive early action, I could also apply to Notre Dame, regular decision for right to restrictive early action.
You can also typically apply to foreign institutions and military programs at any time. What you cannot do. And this is the restrictive part. If you applied to Stanford, for example, restrictive early action, you cannot also apply to other private institutions early. So it’s kind of like a mental Sudoku puzzle and we’ll get a couple of reps in, so we get more comfortable with it.
But for example, MIT and Stanford, as see as examples there, they would cancel each [00:08:00] other out. Not because of MIT’s level of restrictiveness. They’re just early action, but Stanford’s level of restrictiveness because Stanford will not allow you to apply early there and to another private university and MIT is private.
And one more example, um, and I want to give this example just to stress, the importance of you doing your own research. You will hear me say that multiple times tonight and reading the fine print. When you do finally narrow down your college lists, and you’re, you’re determined on where you’re applying.
So another well-known school, we have Georgetown university, they’re a prime example of why it’s so important to read the fine print at each institution where you apply. They technically call themselves early action. So you might see that and seeing, oh, that’s the big umbrella term. Like that’s not as restrictive, but if you read their explanation of early action on their website, it shows that while they do allow students to apply to other early action or regular decision programs, they do not allow students to apply early decision to any other schools.
Excuse me. So [00:09:00] even though some early decision schools might allow you to apply to other early action or regular decisions, or what have you schools with the understanding that those applications would be withdrawn if you were accepted to that early decision school. And I’ll get into that in a moment, then any early application to Georgetown would mean that you to another school along with Georgetown would mean that you forfeit your right to apply ed to any school.
And again, I know this can get really jumbled. So I’m going to go through a couple of examples throughout our presentation, and that will, I’m happy to answer questions at the end as well. Now, finally, let’s dig into early decisions. With early decision, it is binding. So that means once you are admitted, you have to withdraw all other applications and you have signed your name on the dotted line that you will be attending there in the fall.
Some examples of common examples of early decision schools. You have Boston college brown university, Cornell, duke Northwestern, U Penn. And then again, as I mentioned earlier, Spellman and UVA also have early decision plans since they have both [00:10:00] early action and early decision. And there’s also a Vanderbilt was just probably, it was just well known.
Um, and again, as I mentioned earlier, some schools have ed one and ed two, or that early decision to deadline is closer to the regular decision deadline. And Boston college is an example of that. So if you apply early decision to. Uh, school violating any of these schools, any of these schools, early decision, early action, restrictive early action, any of the school’s policies, um, application policies, if you violate those that could ultimately lead to your offer of admission being rescinded.
So you do want to apply in good faith. It would not be wise, and it is absolutely not advisable to try to cheat the system and apply to several schools, restrictive early action or, or something of that nature. So you want to be sure if you apply early, make sure you know, all of the policies to all the schools are applying to early and make sure that all of the policies are in harmony with one another for the schools where you would like to apply early.
Now on this next slide, I want to talk about [00:11:00] whether or not you apply early, how the cha has an impact on you being accepted to a school. Now, the answer is the very commonly heard. It depends, but yes, it absolutely can. And let me make sure the slides are updated. There we go. It absolutely can. And my apologies that the slides we’re out of time there.
So it’s very common in a very understandable question. And I want to dig a little bit deeper into it, especially in the next slide, but for many students that are applying early, there can be very important financial aid implications in scholarship opportunities that are only, or predominantly available for students who apply early.
So again, some schools, excuse me to answer the question directly. Some schools do have a higher acceptance rate, um, for students who apply early versus those who apply regular, but there’s also somewhat of a high cost high reward situation that especially applies with early decision and then also restrictive early [00:12:00] action.
And we’re going to get more into this on the next slide.
So. Continuing this conversation. Why would you think, and this is going to be important to frame the conversation, as you think about which plan works best for you and what’s being considered in the admissions office. Why do you think it matters and the eyes of the admissions office? Why do you think that there’s a higher yield or rather, should I say a higher admission percentage for those who apply early, you have to think about from your perspective, it’s about you being accepted, but schools are a business and they care about who’s coming to the school.
So we understand students, excuse me, especially parents. This college decision is another step towards investing in your future and your child’s future for parents who are watching. And that’s what matters to us. But what matters to these schools is that they admit and incredible class of amazing students and that those students ultimately enroll in come to this school.[00:13:00]
So while it requires more commitment on our behalf, students, parents, if admissions offices can be more certain that an incredible student will accept their offer of admission, they’re just going to be more likely to offer. Now. They often have certain enrollment targets that they need to meet. And that’s also an important perspective to consider from their perspective.
So as you see what this costs that I have here, listen, number one, if you’re accepted, um, to an early decision school, like university of Pennsylvania, commonly known, or U Penn, that means that if you get admitted, even if you get a financial aid package that looks better from another school, you’ve already signed your name on the dotted line.
And that means that you’re going to be going to the university of Pennsylvania. So. There’s also the flip side of that. If let’s say you don’t get admitted early decision, but you’ve applied early decision and you get deferred. Now, if you get deferred early decision to any school that contract that you signed in a sense, the restrictiveness is lifted.
So for different applicants, your application will [00:14:00] now be considered alongside the regular decision pool. And in a sense, you’ve been released from your contract and are free to apply to attend wherever it is that you would like to attend. Just wanted to elaborate upon that before going specifically into the pros and cons of each of these decision plans on our next slide.
So, what are the pros of applying early decision? We’ve touched on them. Let’s dig a little bit deeper first. Yes. Statistically speaking, you’re going to have an increase in the chance of your admission to a school. If you apply early decision, as we previously discussed, if you decide to apply early decision to a school, it is going to statistically speaking increase your likelihood of admission to that institution that that’s assuming certain things around your academic, et cetera, other qualifications to the school and your preparedness.
But for example, according to the 20 20, 20 21 common dataset Cornell university in Ithaca, New York saw a 24% acceptance rate, early decision as opposed to their [00:15:00] 9% acceptance rate, regular decision. So keep in mind, just to provide a bit of context around those numbers while the acceptance rate is greater during the early application period, the number of applicants applying early versus regular decision is also much.
So while the acceptance rate does seem to does drop dramatically. We also have to remember that the difference between the number of early decision or restrictive early action applicants versus regular decision applicants at a school can be in the tens of thousands of a difference. So that early applicant pools typically sees candidates who have dotted their I’s and crossed their T’s.
They’ve indicated that the school is their number one choice, and they as a group sport, more competitive applications as compared to the regular decision pool as a whole. And then of course, another point that I want to highlight when applying early decision. You’re going to receive your admissions decision earlier.
And I know that’s not rocket science, but if you are accepted early decision, that means you might [00:16:00] get to relax for a week or two, depending between the time when you receive your early admissions acceptance, usually around mid December and that regular decision deadline. If you know, that’s where you want to go.
And during that time period, most of your friends would probably be in a frenzy preparing to submit their January regular decision applications. That’s just typical. Now that doesn’t necessarily mean that you will, as you still have other schools that might peak your interest and you might still want to apply during the decision.
And that’s completely fine, but let me go back on a point that I just made notice that I said you can relax after you receive your early admission acceptance, not after you submit no matter how qualified academically extra credit. No matter what and what area that you were qualified as an applicant? No matter how strong your application is.
An admissions decision is never, never guaranteed, especially some taking into consideration. The impacts that COVID has had on class enrollment, even schools that are typically considered [00:17:00] safety or likely schools, we want to be careful. We don’t want to take any acceptance for granted as nothing is guaranteed.
So unless you get the official green light that you have now received admission, please do not let off the gas proverbially speaking, in terms of making your way through the college application process, whether or not you decide to apply early. And so now we’re going to launch our second poll. Can you hear me now?
Awesome. Thank you, Mackenzie.
I can hand. I’m just wanting to get a sense of where you are in the application process. Give us a better sense of the audience that we’re speaking to, um, make sure that these points hit makes sense to who’s here. Um, and even give us a better sense of what kinds of questions to answer is what kind of questions you’ll have, um, towards the end of the presentation, we’ll give you a couple more seconds here.[00:18:00]
Can you hear me? Not quite yet with you there? And this is my wonderful colleague McKinsey, just having some technical issues. Um, but she is a trooper and working with us, helping with polls, et cetera. Um, awesome. So we are going to close this poll out in a moment. And let’s see where everybody is. Okay. So we see that in terms of where you are on the application process looks like 9% of you have not yet started completely.
Okay. I know we have some freshmen in here. We have 56% of you that are researching schools. Thank you. That is again, one of the points that I hit home so much, please do your research have 26% of you that are already working on essays. That out’s also very worthy around the applause. That’s awesome. This [00:19:00] is right around the time when I would encourage you to do that, if you’re a rising senior.
Um, and then we have 9% of you who say that you’re getting your application materials together. That’s awesome. And understandably, there’s nobody. Who’s almost done. I would be concerned if you were, you’re still growing even as a 16, 17 year old, so you’re not done. There’s still more experiences. You still might have different responses to different essay questions, but thank you guys for engaging in that survey.
And we’ll get back into the rest of the presentation, um, before getting to the Q and a section specifically. So understandably, if I’m going to give you the pros of early decision in all of these applications plans, I also want you to consider potential drawbacks. Now, as I mentioned before, early decision is binding.
What that can translate to is the fact that there’s just a lack of flexibility. Once you sign your name on that dotted line, but it’s not necessarily a con. So once you have. You are committed. So you’ve applied early decision. They’d accepted you. Yay. Congratulations. That is where [00:20:00] you’re going. You don’t have the wiggle room and flexibility to change your mind, which is a completely understandable thing to happen to you as a 16 or 17 year old, even as a full grown adult, it’s perfectly normal to change your mind, but that is the trade-off that you have for a greater level of certainty on the university’s part that you’ll attend.
And also an earlier and a higher likelihood of a positive admission decision for you. It’s just one of the things to consider again, high cost high reward. And then another factor to consider is that you’re just not going to be able to compare better offers from other schools with regards to financial aid.
And, and that’s why I do want to stress that if you are, and you have decided, and you’ve calculated the risks, you’ve talked with counselors and appropriate personnel, you’ve decided you’re applying early decision to. Please just be sure that you wouldn’t be sad about not having the opportunity to attend elsewhere.
If you got accepted elsewhere, this early decision school should be one of, if not your top school choice. And [00:21:00] now we can move into that early action umbrellas schools and go on the pros and cons potentially of applying during early action. Excuse me. So to the converse of applying early decision, this is non-binding.
If you apply under any early action umbrella, what that means is, again, if you’re accepted, congratulations, you can celebrate. Now you have the option. You have the flexibility to either continue applying, see what you get in regular decision and do your investigations, your comparisons to determine the right fit for you.
Or you can just be done. If this is truly the school you see yourself attending, you see it as your home for at least the next four years you can be done. Of course you can always apply for school. I’ll set any costs that might not be covered by grants or Scott or financial aid, but the greatest benefit with applying early on a non-restrictive basis is that you have that flexibility to choose what you do.
Next. You’ve already been proactive. You’ve worked hard to get your ducks in a row earlier than most of your [00:22:00] peers. And now you get to reap the fruits of that labor. And my second note, and this is specifically on the more restrictive early action plans, there is a likely increase in your chance of admission, similar to early decision, not quite as competitive, but still more competitive.
And again, I want to ground this point with an example, excuse me, from the 20 20, 20 21 common data set. So the restricted reaction acceptance rate at Harvard university was 14% as compared to the 3% regular decision acceptance rate in 20 20, 20, 20. That’s not an easy thing that begin different. So even though it’s already, it’s an, it goes from a double percentage exception rates, albeit a very low double, double digit acceptance rate to a very low single digit acceptance rate.
So again, just something to keep in mind in general, with these top elite selective Ivy schools, they’re all very, very competitive. And that’s when earlier point, regardless of how academically or otherwise qualified them an applicant, you are, this just emphasizes the importance of building a balanced college list, robust college list.
And I [00:23:00] encourage you to check out the resources on CollegeAdvisor.com on building a college list. They’re very helpful, very informative, and they can help to make sure that you go to a school that is your best fit and not just a school that everyone’s talking about. Everyone’s heard of, but it might not necessarily be the best fit.
And it’s super, super selective. And then moving onto the third note, if you apply. Just like, well, the only decision you’re going to receive an earlier admissions decision. And then of course this four point I want to elaborate on a bit more. You can also be considered for more scholarships. And as I said, I like to ground my points with examples.
So there are many schools that offer a scholarship opportunities for which students can only be. If they apply early. An example of this is at Georgia tech, where applicants, who wish to be considered for what they call the stamps president scholars program. It’s a, it’s a four year full ride institution, specific scholarship.
Those applicants must apply early in order to be considered for the scholarship. So speaking to the underclass and especially I encourage [00:24:00] you and parents to just start to explore the schools. And I see from that poll that a nice chunk of you have already started to do that. I get a round of applause.
Thank you for your sake. That is a wonderful thing to be doing. And you’ll see that you can be more exposed to certain opportunities that are institution specific, and the sooner you become aware of these opportunities, the more prepared you can be when your application season does finally come. And of course, as, as, as the tradition, uh, we have to talk about the potential drawbacks of applying early action.
So again, I always give disclaimers, these don’t necessarily apply to you. Um, it’s going to depend all largely on your level of preparation, but if you’re applying early action, you’re not necessarily going to have as much time to take another sat or act. So let’s start off by setting the right accents, the right expectations.
Remember if you’re applying early to a school, the deadlines are typically going to be around October, November. So if you’re not happy with your earlier test scores and you want one final shot at either [00:25:00] test sat or act the latest, the late absolute latest you should shoot. To ensure your scores are received by the schools of choice is September.
And certainly no later than October, but again, I wouldn’t shoot for other of these. This is the absolute latest state that they might receive. The scores. You definitely want to get it done by the end of the summer. That said we’re also in a more test optional environment in light of COVID. Um, even though there are some schools who have returned to requirement the tests such as commonly known MIT.
Um, so in this more test-optional environment that won’t necessarily negatively impact you depending on your application and your test application strategy. But another note to consider in terms of applying early action is that it might be a negative, or it might be a drawback if time management is a challenge for you, or if you’re just not ready with your application yet.
Just being honest and fair, your senior year can take an [00:26:00] especially rigorous tone falling up very rigorous junior year. Typically, in terms of your coursework, additional responsibilities and commitments you might have outside of school, all in addition to the fact that you are getting together, your college applications and preparing to make a decision that you will live with for at least the next 42 to four years or so, depending on what you decide to do.
And that can certainly, and understandably feel like a lot of pressure mounting all at one time, that won’t necessarily change regardless of when you apply. So it doesn’t hurt to get the ball rolling sooner rather than later. Just another thing to consider if you are wanting to consider applying early and finally the biggest umbrella about the most common application decisions.
Regular decision and you see that there is just one bullet point here, time. So I want to expand upon this, have a bit of a conversation around this pro applying for regular decision. Again, all of this is really a matter of perspective. If you’ve already invested the time to research the recommended 12 to 15 schools [00:27:00] that you’ll be applying to and mapping out a timeline for your application preparation, those deadlines are not going to sneak up on you.
That’s another huge part for the, with an advisor called advisor.com. I have to put in a plug for my wonderful network. Our advisors can work with you through the steps leading up to and through the ultimate college application process. Now, I personally recommend getting started with your college planning and mapping no later than your junior year in high school.
And at the very latest the summer before your senior year, of course, there’s no harm in getting started earlier than that. But starting earlier doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll be ready early. And this oftentimes has to do with the college essay writing process that can sometimes be somewhat unpredictable.
And you will want to give yourself a few months to start, stop, take a break, come back to yesterday’s. You might’ve gained a fresh perspective on life, or just had a new experience that will better color the essays you just didn’t have when you started writing your essays. Initially again, remember you’re young.
Allow yourself that opportunity to grow, change perspectives and beef up your writing to, [00:28:00] whereas it’s a more accurate reflection of who you are as close to submitting your applications as possible. Now, essay writing, isn’t like algebra. There’s not just one answer where X equals Y there are multiple ways to come to your final product, and there’s multiple versions of that final product that can successfully and body who you are to an admissions office.
So ultimately if the early deadline comes along and you’re just not feeling confident about how well the essays capture the essence of who you are, what matters to you and how a school would be compelled to admit. You can always wait until the regular decision deadlines. Excuse me,
excuse me. I’ve had a tickle in my throat all evening. Thank you. And then of course we have to consider the potential drawbacks of applying regular decision. But again, it’s all just a part of the conversation around these different decision plans. If you’re applying regular decision, there’s just numerically going to be a more limited [00:29:00] space.
And as a result of that, an increased competitiveness in replying, regular decision. So while some schools do and they pledge to reserve most of their class size for regular decision applicants, the fact of the matter is this, most students are applying during the regular decision deadlines. So while they might accept more students in quantity, oftentimes that’s why you’ll see the admission rates for regular decision versus EA are much, much lower.
Now, this too also depends on school, but there’s also. Oftentimes a limited financial aid. So some of those resources might’ve already been taken. My students who applied and were accepted early, I say this depends on school, especially because there are, I’ll say for schools that commit to paying 100% of demonstrated need.
This is not as much of a factor, but there are many schools who can’t commit to that. And so. Understandably going to have fewer resources by the time you apply regular decision. And I will note that this session is primarily focusing on the different application deadlines, but there are many factors of the [00:30:00] application process that are directly interwoven.
So I feel like I’d be remissed to not at least mention or reference you to where you can find more information about financial aid in particular, especially considering that financial aid can significantly impact when you apply. And where are you applying, where you can go. So if you’d like to find more in-depth information about financial aid in particular, again, I’m going to reference you to the resources, the webinars that are on this website for financial aid in particular.
I know there are a couple of wonderful gyms out there. Quick question and answer sessions, masterclasses for financial aid, uh, wonderfully helpful to not only get. Um, if it’s not a live session, you can look at the questions that other students have had. Oftentimes questions you have or questions you didn’t think of other great questions and just get more information and just be more equipped to move forward in success and being as informed as possible as you’re going through this college application process.
Now, in terms of how you, as students can figure [00:31:00] out the best course of action for. First, as I said, now, we’re going back to my favorite point. Research, learn more about the schools that you’re potentially interested in. So when figuring out which application deadlines are going to be most beneficial for you, I want to encourage you to take the time now to prepare for this journey by investing time and learning about the places you may want to attend college, if it’s possible, it’s great to physically go and visit schools that you might be considering.
Oftentimes you can even start to get a sense of whether or not you could see yourself calling this place home for the next four years, figure out where you want to go and figure out why. Then you’ll be better equipped to determine which deadlines are the right fit for you and your goals as it relates to these schools, your education, your goals, excuse me.
And then the higher up on the list of school is the more you may want to consider their early options. That’s it, you may also find yourself doing a bit of an early application Sudoku puzzle. And that leads me to my second point. That you’ll want to be sure that you cross reference the levels of [00:32:00] restrictiveness for your top choice schools, early application plans, because as we’ve discussed, some schools will have more restrictive early application deadlines than others.
And you’ll want to be sure that by the time application season rolls around, you’re aware of which schools you can and cannot apply concurrently to. So again, grounding this and an example. I have to use my Alma mater Stanford. Remember that Stanford offers restrictive early action. So then ask this question and I’m imagining that you’re responding to me.
Could I apply early to Stanford and to MIT? And I trust, you know, that the answer is no. And the reason why is because Stanford’s level of restrictiveness only allows for me to apply to other private universities, regular decision in this excludes military and foreign institutions, but public institutions are completely fair game during early, so long, again, as there’s harmony with their early action policies.
And if you’re working or looking to work with one of our advisors here at called advisor, I would suggest looking into that as an option by [00:33:00] your junior year, by your students junior year, if you’re a parent watching this, ideally no later than the summer before your senior year, but we’re always happy and welcome.
So walking through this process, this is what we do. We enjoy guiding you through this process. And finally, just in terms of last words or last advice, if, if someone were to ask me that something that I would love to highlight to you, I will not get tired of saying this as I’ve already given you several different.
Do your research and use the resources around you. So ask your old classmates and friends, who’ve already gone through the college application process, who might’ve already started their college journey, pick their brains on how the process was. Figuring out more about the schools are going to ask them questions that are relevant to what matters to you in a school.
See if you could potentially picture yourself there, you might get exposure to schools you hadn’t even considered, and that might be the perfect fit for you. But you won’t know until you ask. So use your resources. I said this before and in other presentations and I will continue to say it. My dad has often told [00:34:00] me experience is the best teacher.
It just does not have to be your own. And another often under utilized resource, talk to your school’s guidance counselor. This piece of advice applies. If you’re a freshmen all the way through. Because the more of a relationship you’re able to cultivate with anybody. This is just life applicable. The more health they’re typically going to be able to provide you and more information that’s specific to what they know about you.
Now, underclassmen, I specifically encourage you cultivate that relationship with your guidance counselor. Now get to know your guidance counselors and let them get to know you make regular appointments with them, or just stop in when you don’t need anything. I promise you that will go a long way. Coming from a family that’s been in education for quite a long time.
Now, sometimes counselors might have pretty large caseload. So you might be at a, a very large public school in Texas, or you might have a, your class alone has over 500 students in it. So if your guidance counselor doesn’t know you, the best that they can give you is standard information. Even that is helpful.
Don’t get me wrong from a [00:35:00] guidance counselor, but the better they know you specifically, the more directly there’ll be able to speak into your life. And the more that they understand you, your priorities, your interests, your hobbies, even your academic preparation, the better they’re going to be able to inform you on the potential drawbacks and advantages of several decisions along your college journey, especially when determining what factors to take into consideration as you decide which schools you should apply to.
And when, so all that to say a guidance counselor is often a very worthy person to involve in your high school. Plus their guidance is free. So make sure you invest in your relationship with your guidance counselor. And of course, you’re already on the ball by coming to this presentation, but this is one of many resources that we offer hereatcollegeadvisor.com as of last week, as a matter of fact, our applications have opened for our scholars program, which is another wonderful resource we offer to provide college advising to lower income.
And first-generation students at absolutely no charge to you or your family. And [00:36:00] these applications are going to remain open throughout the last day of June until June 30th. So if you think that you or any rising seniors or friends of yours would be a good fit for our scholars program, you can visit the website I have there www.CollegeAdvisor dot scholars, CollegeAdvisor.com forward slash scholars, hyphen.
And while our scholars program does involve an application process, you can always feel free to tune into other former college applicants, advisors, and admissions officers like myself, giving you inside scoops and information. We wish we would have had access to when we were in your shoes, through our webinars.
Like this, keep in mind. Our goal is to make sure that you know, how to best equip yourself to succeed throughout this college application journey. And with that, I’m happy to turn this presentation to McKinsey as we get ready for our question and answer portion. See if her audio is working when you hear me, and if not, we can just get right into it.[00:37:00]
But in the meantime, I also want to see if we can provide that link to the scholars application. Wonderful. Thank you. Awesome. Okay. Okay. I’m not sure that her audio is quite working yet. Can you even see me? Alrighty. Well, we can just go ahead and get started with the questions that I see here. So we had a student ask, how would a student know if they’re ready or the best candidate?
So with application requirements wise to apply early. And I think that’s a very contextual question, but I love that that question was asked. So in terms of, that’s going to be, it’s going to be up to you. Um, and I’d also say that this is a point in the process. If you’re just wondering if you’re ready to involve those people that are close to you, that you trust.
So if you have a guidance counselor at a high school, if your parents are invested in the process and you trust their guidance and [00:38:00] education process, and then just you assess are your grades as strong as they could be. So that’s a huge factor to take into consideration. Let’s say that you might’ve started off high school and it was a bit of a shaky start, but you’ve been having an upward trend ever since.
That’s wonderful. Maybe you want to hold off and apply regular decision just to show the schools that you have one other oh, you can see in here, McKenzie. Okay. So that might just be me. Awesome. Thank you so much. I’ve had someone let me know that. Okay. But I cannot wonderful world of tech. Okay. Well, I hope I’m not over-talking anybody.
Please feel free to let me know that I’ll wrap up this answer then, and then I’ll, I’ll, I’ll pull back to see, um, if there’s anything happening on my end as well. Um, but just to finish answering that question just regarding yes. If you, so if you ha, if you’re having an upward trend, in terms of grades, you might want to wait to apply regular decision, just to show those schools that you have one more semester.
[00:39:00] Um, An upward trend and grades in the stills, more of a confidence in those schools that you’ll be able to handle the rigor of their school. Um, likewise, if you feel like your grades have been consistently strong, you feel like your extracurricular activities, there’s nothing you’re waiting on. Finishing out.
Everything is a strong, they can be, you feel competent in your essays and you really want to indicate to a school that they’re your top choice. You know, that that’s where you want to go. Then I’d encourage you to apply early. And I’d say that you’re absolutely ready. All right. Now let me see and ask, I’ll just ask the group.
Can everybody hear McKinsey? Can everyone hear me? Um, um,
okay. I, can someone ask if her computer audio is on, if she can’t hear me.
The technical difficulties going on today. I’m my name is Rachel. I work at college [00:40:00] advisor as well. I’m going to join in and just kind of help.
Seems like it might be something on ambers and, Hmm, that’s weird. All right, one second. I’ll let me, um, offline message Amber and try to get this fixed. Thank you everyone for your patience. Hmm.
Um, yes. Can you hear me now? The audio is on
that’s. Okay. Okay, thank you. I don’t know. I’m hoping I’m not over-talking anyone, but thank you for letting me know that you can hear the Kinsey[00:41:00]
and then someone said you can’t hear either of us. Okay.
Alrighty. I am at the risk of, I’m going to try to exit and return for, let me do this
while we wait for Amber to kind of, um, navigate these issues. Mackenzie, I have a quick question for you. Um, did you apply early action or early decision? Okay. My apologies, um, to Cornell going to help on metal we’re talking.
Yes, I did apply early decision to Cornell. And then I applied early action to Howard [00:42:00] university. So I was able to apply to both, um, because, um, Cornell’s early, any questions in the chat. Um, and I was able to, um, get my application and everything done and all of my letters of recommendation done by the deadline.
I did have to apply on Halloween. So that’s how I spent my senior year Halloween. And then, um, I really felt strongly about applying to both because Howard, Rachel, if you can hear me, would it just be helpful to continue to answer your questions in the chat? I can do that. I just don’t want to talk over anybody.
I think we’ll go with that one. Um, we do have another webinar on applying early. If you would like to view that. And me and Amber talk, I was just going to try to get these types of issues solved. So they do want to answer your questions.[00:43:00]
so Mackenzie, while Amber is leaving us real quick, um, what, what made you go in the direction of applying early to Cornell? How did you make that decision? Uh, so I ended up, um, finalizing that decision, um, after visiting Cornell and October. So like a few weeks before the application was due and then I really fell in love with the campus.
The admissions offices were really cool. The different professors were cool. Um, the campus is gorgeous up there. Um, and then, um, so that really helped with solidifying my decision, but I really knew that I wanted to go to Cornell because they had all the programs that I like in the college of human ecology.
They had every single type of major I could think of that I would want from public health to policy, um, to, um, Fashion design to design in general. Um, so I [00:44:00] really felt strongly about going there. And then I knew Cornell as an Ivy league would have a pretty good endowment. So I’d have my financial aid would be, um, pretty good from there.
Um, I did also apply early action to Howard since there weren’t any restrictions. So I, those were my top two schools since like ninth grade, well Cornell since 11th grade Howard since ninth grade. So I knew that, um, both of them would be my best. Um that’s and then, so I applied and then I still had some other schools that I was considering if I didn’t get into either.
But luckily I got into both on my birthday, which is in mid December. So even if I didn’t get into either of them, I knew that I would still have, um, at least. Or between three weeks and a month, um, to apply for the rest of the schools. But Cornell just really was, it had everything I needed from financial aid, academically, socially.
Uh, everything was just a really, um, strong fit for that school. Awesome. Thank you, [00:45:00] Mackenzie. So, uh, another question, I’m going to just give you another question since you are an admissions expert and advisor here at CollegeAdvisor. Um, and I see ambers joining back in Amber, do you hear us now? I hear you perfectly clear.
Perfect. Went out on my computer. I’m not sure how, but thank you. I’m going to pass the mic back over to Mackenzie to lead the Q and a thank you to our audience members for, uh, the patients as we kind of navigated these technical technical difficulties. Can we extend for 10 minutes? Just so we can get through some questions.
Totally extend for 10 minutes. As long as folks are able to stay. Thank you. Okay. So getting back to the Q and a, um, the next students asking what do I do if I get accepted to a school through early decision, but then I don’t have the financial aid because my parents are too wealthy or I don’t fall in the financial aid requirements, um, for getting help.
Yes, no, it’s a great question. And it’s always one of those high costs, high [00:46:00] reward situations that I like to highlight. Um, that’s exactly why I would advise you to be cautious with how you approach early decisions. So just do as much research as you can, in terms of, um, oftentimes schools will have a financial aid net price calculator, where you can determine you can approximate how much aid you could expect to receive from a school, just so you’re not going into that admissions process blind.
Um, and you understand the risks that if I get admitted here, this is likely a ballpark estimate of the money that I could receive and I’m okay. And accepting the risk that that could fall on my family. Um, because that is a situation that is really tough. I’m not going to say that there are not the, that there don’t exist and the exception cases, but that is not something that would be advisable or wise to go into a situation expecting to be the exception, just to increase your admissions chances.
If that’s not a burden that you’re willing to take on financially, then I would just say to consider that as part of the cost in terms of applying early decision, because it truly is like signing a [00:47:00] contract. So it is something that I would say to approach with a level of, um, respect and seriousness.
Definitely the next student is asking, I am planning on taking the sat one less time before applying ed or EA. Do you believe the universities colleges? I applied to receive my scores on time. Did you? Okay. And I might’ve misses in the question, but what’s the time specified when the last eight years she said that she was about to, they did not.
I think they just said they’re going to take it at some point. Okay. Well, I will say that depends. Um, as I said, I, and I, I. With a huge caveat. Um, if you’re trying to apply early that absolute, absolute, absolute, last time you should take testing is September. And I really would highly advise you more so to be June, July, or August, July, or August, um, with the remaining tests.
Um, just so that you’re not playing this game with like, okay, well, it’s supposed to come two weeks, but there was a delay and now. Um, so that would be my advice in that can just be broadly [00:48:00] applicable, even not knowing your specific, um, that line in terms of taking the test and then applying regular decision, you have more time, um, given that it’ll typically be a late December, early January deadline.
Um, but still keep in mind. You want to make sure that your test scores get there on time if you’re not applying test optional, um, because that will be a factor of your admission. And if you are applying test-optional again, that’s going to impact your strategy. Um, I would definitely encourage you to talk with them.
Personal advisor guidance, counselor, um, in terms of weighing whether or not it would, it would be to your advantage to apply test optional, or if you’ll want that score to be incorporated into, um, your application for the school. Uh, just to get this in there too. Um, so I was told when I was applying way back, when that, um, if you do end up taking your exams, uh, like one of the later dates, and then you, um, tell the school that it’s going to come in and you have, it’s supposed to be sending in, but it goes after the deadline.
Does that still get red from your admissions side? Does it still get, I love this question and I [00:49:00] dealt with these situations in the admissions office, so don’t eat it can, yes. Um, what I would say to you is if that is the case, make sure you reach out to the school. Um, so oftentimes schools will tell you that.
The first thing that pops up on Google. But if you type in, for example, specifically a Stanford, I didn’t know this as a student applying to Stanford, I was in the admissions office and I had no idea that we could have contacted our admissions counselor just because of my exposure. Um, but if you Google contact or admission officer Stanford university, they have a specific page.
And I believe it’s located under the counselors. Is why. Um, but you can reach out, you can see who the admissions officer is for your region and then reach out and inquire or not inquire the specific, but just let them know, like, Hey, I submitted my testing, it’s delayed. Um, my student name is this, et cetera.
Um, they might even reply to you letting let, uh, you know, that like, Hey, send us your student ID or whatever, pour whatever information I need. Um, or they might just be able to find your record, but definitely reach out to the [00:50:00] school and let them know that you did submit testing. And it’s not just a situation where you accidentally select a test.
Um, you’re submitting a test, but you meant test optional and it’s not coming. Um, kind of situations is that is as cool as the test optional. I hope that makes sense. That situation definitely occurred. And we definitely have students who emailed us and that was an indicator to us as admissions officers.
Again, it’s a very human process, so let them know so that it doesn’t just get read over without your test. If you want that test to be.
Uh, so going on to the next question, what do you think is the best way to figure out which school is my top choice? Especially since that early decision is binding. Not everybody knows that they are a hundred percent sure on these schools. Yes. And I know the research is so big, so let’s, let’s make this more tangible.
Um, yeah. One of the things that I encourage students to do if possible is visit the schools. Um, and I end up going to isn’t always necessarily possible, but let’s say you are more low income. That was, that was definitely the category that I [00:51:00] fell into. But there are a lot of programs, again, that we’re just not aware of because of exposure, but there are some, some schools have fly in programs where they will fly you in.
They will take care of the cost. Um, look into these options. Don’t try as much to find ways around potential barriers as possible to get yourself as much exposure and as much of a like up and in the process, if you can. I encourage you to visit schools as much as possible. They have plenty of virtual visit options as well.
And in light of COVID, so definitely take advantage of those opportunities. Um, but the reason I say to visit the schools, because it can often give you a different perspective of the school. And I have, um, one of my little goddesses, for example, who just went through the cost process and she thought, for sure, I’m not going to name the school, but she thought for sure, she knew who she wants to go to this particular school.
And she visited it and was scared slash like, Hey, she was like, this is not what they showed in the brochure. Like, yes, because again, they are a business. They want to show you their best side. Not saying that if you get there, it’s not going to be what you saw necessarily, but it might not be. So it’s great to be able to visit.
And then [00:52:00] if you’re not able to visit, or if you are still pick the brain. The people around you use your resources. If you have friends who have gone to certain schools, ask them what it really looks like, ask your parents, friends. If they, if there’s somewhere, they can get someone to go for. You just utilize the resources, ask questions, scour the internet, and just look at, you can even find some videos on YouTube.
I mean, obviously like these people are looking to get likes and views, et cetera. So you don’t know where everything was salt with the, with a grain of salt, but. Do as much as you can to get a truest sense of what that school actually can offer you. And what matters to you. If, you know, you want to go into a particular program, do they offer that that’s a great place to start because some people grow up thinking like my parents went to so-and-so, so I’m going to go into so-and-so, but I want to study like fashion, for example, and then go to school.
But like this wasn’t even have a fashion program. What am I doing? So it’s really important to get a sense of what your priorities are, I guess is the best way to say, do your research and then see how your priority lineup with schools that you might be interested in. And then also expand your search to schools.
You haven’t even heard of just look up schools by your criteria and see what [00:53:00] comes in. And that’s, that’s a way for you to personally expand your repertoire, understanding of more of the thousands of thousands of schools that exist just in this country. And then we do have other webinars on how to choose between schools, how to, um, research school is where you can find out more like nitty gritty of what you should be looking for.
When looking for a school, a good place to start would be looking for schools that have the program you’re interested in just because that’s what you’re going there for. Um, but real quick, um, as Amber was mentioning, um, that as this question brought up, the admissions process is really tough and it can be nerve wracking and overwhelming for parents and students alike, just because it’s like, you’re trying to find a place that you’re going to be for the next four years.
You’re really trying to, um, pick the place that’s gonna set you up for success in the future. And it can be really stressful, especially since this is your fit, your first, um, big grown-up decision. Um, so. Really, we want you to like, just, um, get the resources and support you need. And the [00:54:00] best place to look is for college adviser, because our team of over 300 former admissions officers and admissions experts are ready to help you and your family navigated on one-on-one advising sessions.
And in these advising sessions, you really get to know your advisor, your advisor gets to know you, they can really figure out what your interests are, um, what your needs are. And, um, whether that’s financial academic, whether you need specific supports from, um, the setting of your environment or types of professors, they can help you do that.
Research help you come up with the best application for this early decision where you need to be on your P’s and Q’s as they say. Um, and then, um, so really, um, joining CollegeAdvisor can give you that necessary support to really help you figure out these decisions, figure out how to get your application together and figure out if a school is going to meet your needs.
So we do recommend you going to app.CollegeAdvisor.com to find out more, um, information and to even schedule a free consultation with us, um, to find out more about our [00:55:00] prices, packages, and what else we have to offer. Now back to the Q and a, um, so yeah, so, uh, another student is asking, does early action, such early decision affected mission into earliest assurance medical programs.
And if you can talk about other programs like the arts or those extra ones that have additional applications does early decision affect those. So I love how nuanced your question is. Um, there are several aspects and layers to that question, excuse me. And I don’t want to go outside of the scope of what I’ll say this would fall under the umbrella of make sure you read the fine print for the specific schools, because that’s not.
So those early insurance medical programs aren’t, don’t apply to all schools. Um, and so there might be different policies for different particular schools. I would just look at the specific policies for each, um, for each, uh, for each school for what you were considering, this early assurance medical program.
I am. I feel like there was, there [00:56:00] was a second layer to that question because there is so after, oh, I just added on to it, uh, like other programs such as like the arts program or like a dance music type program where you have to submit portfolios and stuff. Do you know how that sort of works with the admission, the early deadlines?
Yes. No, that’s something that I would just encourage you to look more in to off the top of my head. I’m not, that’s not a, an area where I’m as familiar in terms of how those deadlines coincide or if they’re different programs entirely. I’m not a hundred percent sure. So I don’t want to steer you in the wrong direction.
Um, but I would just look into if those are completely separate application processes and deadlines. If, if they run concurrent. Okay, going on to the next question, is students asking, I’m going to start writing my essays after finals exam this week. Where should I look for essay prompts specific to certain universities?
And can you talk a bit about how the, um, essay and application portal, um, cycle works? Yes. [00:57:00] So for over 900 schools, you can find those essay prompts on the common app website. You can specifically, you can go to a lesson and we’ll list them alphabetical order, and you can click on the school, see what the updated essay prompts are for that school in particular.
Um, and then with regards to, and you can also Google them. Some of them we’ll post them on the school specific website. Um, and then with regards to the essay writing process, um, what in particular, I guess I’ll just speak to a point that I made in the, in the presentation. Um, very helpful to get yourself at least a couple months.
So definitely to start by the summer before your senior year. Um, usually oftentimes the common app prompts, so they haven’t been released already in the comment I’ve promised I’ve already been released. Um, this year it will totally be released by July. Um, and then you can just start to draft, like, just start to write, um, an exercise that I encourage to do is just like free write, like stream of consciousness.
Don’t stop herself, edit yourself. Um, and this is something that I encourage and something that I did, um, and do just because it’s [00:58:00] very easy to, like, I start writing you start writing something like, oh, that doesn’t sound right. Or I want to change this, but now you’ve fractured your thoughts and you haven’t fully gotten out everything that she wanted us to get out.
So I encouraged like an exercise that is very helpful, um, for me and, and for people who think in that way, just to start stream of consciousness rights, to certain prompts, just to get your ideas out and then you can start to mold and shape and make it what you’d like to make it. Um, but the reason that I say to start earlier, Sometimes you, you, you just get stuck, um, all the time with responses.
I’m like, I, I feel like there’s more to say, but I don’t know what more to say. Just leave it alone again. It’s not an algebra problem, so it’s not like you just have to wait until July 19th, 2022. When you’re going to have your one answer, you don’t know what kinds of experiences are going to give you a different perspective that might equip you better to handle that question or to, to embellish your response and in a product we’re not embellish in a negative way, but just to be able to beef up your response, um, later on.
So if you do get [00:59:00] frustrated with essay prompts, allow yourself to build that time into the essay, prompt response. I wouldn’t say like something that absolutely, um, advise against, then I understand this happens in high school with homework and everything else. You’re juggling. Wouldn’t wait until the last minute.
It wouldn’t wait until like a week ago. Bang out a paper that’s that’s, this is not the environment you want to do it. You want to give yourself as much of an opportunity to reflect, to change your ideas, um, and to be able to present again, the most accurate reflection of yourself to those schools, you want to give yourself the best opportunity to shine and show schools, whether or not you’re a good fit, why you’d be a great candidate for their school, et cetera.
Um, so that process is, again, just a very, I don’t want to use the word fluid, but it’s, it’s just not. Uh, it’s not a, it’s not X equals Y process. So you need to give yourself that breathing room to be able to have several iterations, allow yourself to grow, allow yourself to change your mind and have new experiences that will help inform your responses better in the future.
And then with that, um, which Imma call it. When I was working on [01:00:00] my essays for the application process, I did start in the summer. And then for my personal statements specifically, I wrote it and then I didn’t like the topic. So I changed it towards like July and then I wrote it again for like a month.
And then that topic just didn’t. I showed it to my teacher when I got. And he was like, okay, but is this actually you like, are you actually talking about yourself? And I was like, good point. So then I had to go back and rewrite my application and I was applying early. So, um, the timeline was getting a little bit closer.
Um, but I started writing about a club that I started my senior year. So like a lot of last minute stuff, but it still worked out. Um, and this club was really impactful as something very important to me. Um, and so I was able to write about it, get it done and get it submitted. I ended up, um, taking the last exam possible for the sat also like doing last minute, isn’t impossible.
It’s just, you really have to manage your time and you want that extra time to really be able to do all these things, [01:01:00] make mistakes, figure it out as you go. Absolutely. So, um, as we are coming up on time, is there any last minute advice you want to give tips or parts of the application process you really want people to consider when applying for.
Hmm, whether I’m tying to get the points I’ve already made or just, I guess I will say yes, several questions have come up to the effect of just wanting to wait. How do I determine if the school is a priority, um, Y in terms of informing whether or not you apply early
for, from a personal perspective, I think it’s really important to do all the things that we’ve talked about in, in this presentation. It can be really helpful from both of our perspectives, because looking at things that are very important, like if you know what program you want to study, make sure it exists.
Um, but let’s say you don’t even know what program you wanted to study. I fell into that category. I had no idea what I wanted to study. I just knew I loved connecting with people, helping you. [01:02:00] Whatever the priorities are that are governing your decision to get into a school. What makes sure they exist at those schools that IRS cross all your teeth.
But once you’ve done that at the end of the day, this is how I make my decisions take into consideration. The wise counsel that you trust around you. Um, and if there is a decision that, that you feel peace with, then move forward. Because at the end of the day, we’re not going to know every single factor that’s we can’t know every single possibility.
So after you’ve done your research, you’ve done your due diligence. You’ve taken into consideration that wise counsel around you. You’ve asked questions, pick people’s brains, use other people’s experience to inform your own decision-making. Then just be confident that you’ve done your part and move forward with the decision that makes the most sense of you feel like you would be, you would be happy with going to E you want Stanford to know that they’re your number one choice, and you’re okay with not applying to any other private university early you’re okay.
With applying to the regular. The [01:03:00] Bellamy’s go through that. If, you know, you want to go to university of Pennsylvania, it doesn’t matter how much you have to put, you’re going to apply for all the scholarships. You got to figure it out. Okay. Then as long as you’ve taken the cost into consideration, move forward, proceed, proceed with caution, but proceed with a piece, whatever it is that you feel most peace with doing, I would say to move forward with that with the caveat of make sure you do your research.
That’s, that’s like the biggest thing with, with the, with, I guess the assurance of once you’ve done your research, et cetera, whatever you feel most peace with, I encourage you to move forward. And just for a quick one per question, how should students go about, um, getting letters of recommendation? If they’re applying early, especially if maybe their junior year teachers, they didn’t get that close to, can they still ask their senior year teachers?
Yes. Great question. Yes. Not typically I advise students to ask their junior year teachers before the summer. Um, because keep in mind, all of these teachers have all[01:04:00]
we’re asking for letters of recommendation and you want to make sure that again, your, your teachers are human too. So you want to make sure that you don’t fall between the cracks. You’re not asking when everyone else is asking and you’re getting a, uh, uh, a letter of recommendation that might not be the fullest reflection of even that teacher’s perception of you or might not be the best reflection of you just because the teacher is tired.
So I always encourage students to ask students before the summer of your junior, going into your senior year, understandable that it’s hard to get to know your junior, your teachers sometimes, especially if you were still fully virtual, um, that’s still schools understand that, and it’s perfectly acceptable to use letters of recommendation.
From teachers who you had, um, during a virtual environment, or you didn’t get to know them as much that said, um, stronger letters of recommendation are going to come from teachers who know you better. So if you even need to ask, this is kind of an, from my perspective, I say, even if you had a, let’s say you were able to meet your sophomore year teacher and you had a deeper [01:05:00] relationship with you, even though that’s a little further back, um, feel free to, again, email schools as well, like asking if they specifically say they need a teacher from 11th to 12th grade, if you want to ask and provide comments like, Hey, I never got to meet my junior year teacher, but my 10th grade teacher, we have a really good relationship with them.
They can speak a lot more. So my academic preparedness and my engagement, how it gave him in the classroom, can I submit this letter of recommendation? I will say that take that extra step. If that is an explicit requirement of the school, just to make sure that your letters of recommendation are the best reflection of you.
Um, because that is a significant factor while even though schools are going to say like, yes, it’s perfectly acceptable to take that as a recommendation from teachers who don’t know you as well. Best it’s most helpful to you to get letters of recommendation from teachers who do know you. Um, so then to the latter part of that question, if, if you want to wait until your senior year, you actually are able to build a rapport with that senior, your teacher, okay.
With understanding that makes sure you have enough time, um, to get that letter of recommendation, that if they’re able to get, maybe you had them your freshman year before, and then you have your senior year [01:06:00] again, then maybe that’s kind of a loophole way around it. Um, I know that happens sometimes with, with, um, with teachers when you have them, um, again, so they have a relationship with you, but it’s, it’s just from a different class and now they technically qualify because their senior year teacher, those are several kind of case-by-case examples, but all that to say, when it comes to that recommendations as sooner, not later, um, and even though it has come, it is completely acceptable.
It really is, um, to submit letters of recommendation from teachers who you only do in a virtual environment. And sometimes that’s all you have go with that. And then you’ll just want to make sure that you get. Present yourself with as, as much clarity and strength as possible in your essay, since they won’t be able to lean as much on your lens of recommendation.
But if you are able to give out as a recommendation from a teacher who has better experience with you, then that’s also something that is a high priority. I hope I know that was a lot of nuance and in several rabbit holes, but I hope that that kind of gets that to the essence and the root of the question ethnically.
And I did ask my senior year teachers for a largest recommendation. [01:07:00] One I did have from the year prior, the other, I didn’t technically ask, but my, um, What does that person called? Um, AP asked, um, the teacher for me because I tried asking her and they said I needed a actual teacher. So the teacher wrote me one, but even if it’s like a last minute, well, not last minute, uh, senior year teachers, since you only have a short period of time doing really well in those classes, really showing up, showing out during projects, even in that short amount of time can really get them something to work with for your letter of recommendation or just, you know, showing your personality, being time.
You don’t have to be the most outgoing person in the classroom, but just doing really well in that class, even though it’s a short period of time, they can still give you a great letter of recommendation. So, yes. So thank you everyone for coming out tonight and thank you to our wonderful panelists, Amber, we hope you found this information helpful.
And remember that you can download the side from the link in the handouts tab and this webinar is being recorded. If you would like to view it again later again, sorry for the technical difficulties, but this webinar, uh, [01:08:00] does have a second version with Amber as the well, where you can find more information about, um, how to apply earlier, if you should apply early, as well as our other webinars, where we talk about, um, different, um, parts of the application, different things you need to have prepared.
And then as well as the rest of our June series, where we’ll be talking about identity, different things about the application, we’ll look at different types of schools. If you’re researching schools right now, um, to see what’s out there, as well as, um, other things you can do to really, um, build your application.
So thank you everyone for coming out tonight and goodnight. Thank you again for your patience. You guys enjoy your night.