College applications

Riley McLaughlin and Angelina McNulty

College applications can be very overwhelming, and without a plan of action, it might seem impossible to fill out all the tedious forms and write countless personal essays. Here are some tried and true tips that can help you get through this stressful process.

1) Organize! Before you dive into filling out your applications, you should figure out what each college you are applying to requires for admission in terms of essays, recommendation letters, and more. This way, you will be able to know exactly what you need to do and will be able to effectively manage your time.

2) Don’t Procrastinate. Even though colleges set deadlines for you, try to set your own deadlines and have everything done with time to spare. This will allow time for your counselors to review your application and make sure your desired school gets everything they need by the deadline. You don’t want to be scrambling to get it all done in time!

3) Space Everything Out. It’s a good idea to set up a schedule for yourself so you won’t get overwhelmed. This way, you can tackle each area of your applications individually and really focus on a particular essay or other section of the application.

4) Don’t Forget About Those Letters of Rec! Letters of recommendation are a huge part of many college applications. It works best when you ask the teachers you want to write your letters with a few weeks notice. This way, they have plenty of time to get it done and ready for you by your deadline.

5) Ask People to Review Your Essays! Even if you think your essay is ready for submission, it is best to have a fresh pair of eyes review it and give feedback. In fact, it is recommended that you have six people read each paper. This will help catch mistakes you may miss and offer new advice to spruce up that paper.

6) Don’t Be Afraid of Rejection! Many students fear applying for certain scholarships, honors programs, or prestigious universities because they do not believe they will be accepted. Don’t let that stop you! It is best to apply for anything you are interested in, even if it seems far-fetched. Who knows? The results may surprise you. You do not want to finish your application process with regrets.

7) Try Not To Get Too Stressed. We realize this task seems daunting and impossible to accomplish without anxiety and stress. But, if you follow these steps, you will be setting yourself up for success. Applying for college is a universal experience for most high school seniors, so if you are ever feeling extremely overwhelmed, just remember that you are not alone. Help is always available!