The summer before your senior year can be stressful when you have college on your mind. To help you stay calm, and get the job done, we’re going to share some of our best strategies.
5 Summer Survival Tips
1. Be yourself. Don’t spend too much time worrying about how you are going to appear to colleges. Do you like playing tennis? So play tennis. Do you have a job? Keep working. Do you want to hang out in the den watching Netflix with your friends? Go ahead. Are you a dedicated researcher? Work in the lab. Embrace who you are, and pick activities that make sense. And don’t forget to have fun. Go to the pool, the beach, the theme park, the Fourth of July fireworks. Explore museums, attend concerts, play sports. The summer before senior year is a great time to hang out with your friends and relax.
2. Avoid New Expenses. You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars for a leadership program or summer service trip to enhance your college application. Do it only if you love it! Your junior year grades are most important, and your grades are in; you can’t change them. You’ve already taken the ACT or SAT, though you can still take them again if necessary. What’s more, you’ve already participated in sports and leadership positions and done volunteer work. Moving forward, focus on what you can control (like the college essay; see bullet No. 4!).
3. Research colleges. Do your homework, and identify the qualities you are looking for in a college. Do you want big or small, rural or urban, private or public? What programs interest you? Do you like science? Urban planning? Psychology? English literature? Summer is quiet on college campuses, and is a great time to visit or reach out to the admissions office with questions.
4. Begin your college essays. The essay is your opportunity to let colleges know who you are and what’s important to you. Now is the best time to start writing, but don’t assume you know how. First, think about what you want colleges to know about you that they wouldn’t otherwise know from your application package. Once you can answer that question, you are ready to begin the writing process in earnest. Don’t count on the essay you wrote this year in your English class. It may be a good start, but most likely it needs to be rewritten for a new audience: the college admissions counselor. Look at your high school assignment as practice for the real deal.
5. Get a Taste of Wow for FREE! Sign up for FREE access to WowWritingWorkshop.com the leading authority on writing for college admissions. We talk to admissions officers all the time, and we know what they want to read. They tell us the essay is more important than ever; grades and test scores are not enough to secure a spot at your dream school. You can count on Wow’s free membership to help you start writing an application essay that stands out. Our online college essay writing system will teach you how to share your unique story in your words and your voice. You can use it on your own, with a parent as a guide, or with a Wow writing coach.