When it comes to applying for college, you have one chance to make a good first impression. It is important that your college application represents not only who you are but also who you hope to you become with the help of a college degree. Here’s how we recommend you approach each part of your application in order to make sure that it is as impressive as you are!
Most colleges will let you apply online or through the mail, but no matter which method you choose, make sure that you are organized throughout the process. Start early finding out deadlines for applications, collecting your recommendations and filling out forms. You don’t want to be rushed or place extra pressure on the individuals that you request a recommendation from. It also may take some time to request transcripts that you need to gather from past institutions – give yourself plenty of time to do this without having to pay extra fees for rush deliveries.
Be an Early Bird
Consider submitting your application during the early admission time frame for the schools that are at the top of your list. Many schools accept the largest percentage of their applicants during the first decision phase. This could give you an edge at certain places, but regardless, definitely don’t procrastinate till the last minute.
With the application essay(s), be yourself and use your own voice – don’t try to impress admissions committees by using big words or complicated concepts. The most important thing you can convey in your essay is your perspective. They want to see how you view the topics that you choose to write about. Once you are done writing, we can’t stress proofreading enough. This is vital. Proofread it yourself, and then have two other people you trust read them and make edits.
As a well-rounded applicant, you should have some investment in your community outside of the classroom. Colleges build their reputation based on involvement beyond academics, and they want their students to be participants, as well as innovators, in this culture. Leadership experience is a great addition to your extracurricular endeavors as well.
The individuals you choose to represent you through recommendation letters support your authenticity and your legitimacy. They corroborate the story of who you have represented yourself to be in the rest of your application. Make sure you choose individuals that have seen you in different types of scenarios and roles. They will be able to exemplify who you are with helpful antidotes that will stick with admissions teams.
Obviously, your scores from standardized tests are important factors in the admissions decision or else schools wouldn’t require them. Many schools weigh them heavily because of their large number of applicants, as they need some kind of measuring tool that can stretch across a national standard. Remember, you can take these tests more than once. Take prep courses if you feel that you need them. Different schools consider the test scores in different ways – research this and find out the averages of the previously accepted class.
Overall, the best application advice is to get started well before the deadlines start sneaking up on you. Make sure that you have a timeline mapped out with different deadlines and include the amount of time you think each component will take. This is your first impression – make it a good one!
Are you ready to get started today? South College operates on a quarter schedule and accepts applications on an on-going basis.