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College Prep Guide

Preparing early for college may prove to be beneficial for lowering highschool students’ stress levels.

Photo courtesy of Businessoffashion.

Transitioning from high school to college is one of the most challenging tasks for young adults, especially those who are seniors. September marks the beginning for many college applications to open up for the next summer and fall semester slots for its undergraduates. Here are some helpful tips for students to map out their plans for their future.

There are a variety of colleges to pick from, which is why narrowing them down is a great start. Consider creating a list of potential candidates, then order the list based on priorities and how much they meet certain criterias. Some criterias to consider may include, cost, price of tuition, housing, dormitories, and location.

With the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) affecting a majority of test dates for this year’s standardized testing (ACT and SAT), focusing more on GPA and other clubs may be helpful. This is because those categories will be looked at by the admissions committee as well. Making sure students do their best academically in school, from freshman to senior year, will give them a better chance at being accepted into more selective schools, understanding that they will display more consistency in willingness to succeed academically.

Campus visits are some students’ most favored experiences, but unfortunately, COVID-19 has overshadowed it. The next best thing would be virtual online tours that can be scheduled for certain schools. These will help these individuals grasp a better understanding of their future environment and see if it will suit them. 

Roaming over ideas on payment methods for colleges is an important talk as well. Make sure to address this with every party who is financially supporting the student, such as the parents and students themself. Additionally, scholarships are a great way to start because they potentially relieve a portion of families of the financial burden.

Gathering information for applications beforehand will ease seniors into the process even quicker. Having documents on hand, such as transcripts, SAT and ACT test scores, and other legal documents will ensure the students have the right material to insert into the online forms more efficiently.

One of the most dreaded parts of preparation time would be the essay portion. This section entails extra concentration due to the fact that it requires creative writing skills and good use of time management. Brainstorming ideas first and then outlining possible topics is a good habit to start early. 

Lastly, considering early action admissions may be on top of certain individuals lists. This is because top tier schools have higher standards than others. Signing up early may guarantee a slot for these twelfth graders in their upcoming year. This helps to reduce the level of anxiety and stress because there will be less chances of having to worry about submitting documents last minute.

Fortunately, there are many schools that are accessible for students of all needs, no matter the situational background of the student. Making sure to keep their mental health top notch while in this crucial process of determining their futures will lessen the amount of pressure they are feeling altogether. 
For more information regarding how to handle stress while in school, please visit https://hside.org/college-application-anxiety/ .

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