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Summer Tasks for Seniors: Time to Get Organized!

This week we are helping seniors get a jump start on the requirements for the college application process.  Yesterday’s post discussed the steps you should take in order to narrow down your college list.  Once you have a fairly good idea of which schools you are going to apply to (and it is perfectly fine to make changes later), it is a good idea to organize your application requirements and deadlines.  Here are the steps you should take in order to determine what will be required to complete your college applications.

Step 1: Common Application.  Determine which schools will accept the Common Application.  While the 2011-2012 Common Application will not be available until August 1, you can preview the document in order to determine what will be required.

Step 2:  Determine deadlines.  Look at the admissions website of the schools you are going to apply to.  This is the best (and most accurate) source for information on application policies and requirements.  While all college applications will require you to submit your official high school transcript additional requirements will vary.  Here is a sample list of materials that our commonly required:

      • Essay
      • Supplemental forms
      • Supplemental essays
      • Teacher recommendations
      • School report
      • Mid-year report
      • Standardized testing scores
      • Athletic or Arts supplements
      • Any additional forms or materials
Step 3:  Look at requirements for scholarships.  In addition to application requirements, you should also make yourself aware of deadlines for merit scholarships.  Visit the financial aid website for each of your schools in order to determine what steps you need to take to be considered for merit aid.
Step 4:  Create a calendar.  Once you have determined the application requirements for each school, create a calendar or timeline of when you plan on submitting each requirement.  Be sure to share with information with someone who may help keep you on top of your deadlines!
Keep in mind that some colleges have not updated their websites with their official deadlines for next year.  Most should be updated by August 1st.
Katherine Price

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