Whether you’re worried about getting into college best the last three and half years of high school didn’t go as planned, or you want to get started early and make high school the most productive four years as possible, there are things you can do. These 10 steps will help you make the most of the time you have left in high school:
Help out: Working in your local community in your free time as an unpaid volunteer really looks good on your college application and may make you eligible for some scholarships. This experience should be fun and worthwhile so make sure you choose an organization or group that fits some of your interest.
Spend some time with books: Reading has many benefits but the biggest one is that will help increase your vocabulary which in turn will help you on the SAT’s. No one’s asking you to read a novel a day, but increasing your reading will give you ammo for college applicants and interviews. Especially since a common question is, “What’s your favorite book and why?” Or “What’s the last book you read?” You don’t want to make up a phony answer because the college may ask follow up questions.
Call Harvard: If Harvard is not your number one choice for a college, call whatever college that may be. Developing a relationship with your college early on can help set you up for the future. Most college and universities want to know their students want to be there and are not just going there because they couldn’t get in anywhere else. Send your dream college an email expressing your interest and desire to attend that school; you never know who may read it.
Be Creative: College essays can be nerve racking, and reasonably so since they are a huge part of your college application. The key to getting over this hurdle is it get started early and to be creative with your essay. The teams of people who are going to read your college essay have read thousands and thousands of college essays, make sure yours stand out from the crowd.
Facebook: Never thought you would be reading a college article telling you to get a Facebook account did you? Well Facebook, when used correctly can be a great tool to make relationships and find out information about your dream school (if they have a fan page). Another thing to keep in mind concerning Facebook is to make sure there’s nothing on there you wouldn’t want a college admissions representative to see. Colleges can and do take Facebook into consideration when make a decision about acceptance.
Be Adventurous: Colleges are becoming more and more competitive by the year so if you have a burning desire to try something that you’ve always wanted to try, high school is the best time to do that. It can either propel you forward and give you a new passion and help decide which major to choose or it can just be a learning experience that you hated but can write about in college essays. Either way it’s a win-win.
Campus Tours: Taking a campus tour is the best way to find out if your dream college is actually your dream college. This will give you an inside look on what the college and student life is all about and has to offer. This will also give you a chance to talk to the dean and financial aid to make sure you have the best chances of getting in and the best resources to stay in.
Keep Busy: When school is in session you are probably busy and running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to keep all the balls in the air. Summer vacation should be a time of rest and relaxation to get rejuvenated but it’s important to stay involved with something throughout the whole year. Don’t waste your summer away by playing video games all day, get out there and get involved in your community it will look great on a college application.
Be a Mentor: If you are exceptionally talented in a specific and even if you aren’t but you have a great passion for something, pass on the legacy. Gaining leadership skills early on is going to be critical to your college application as well as your college career. Start small, by teaching just one or two and one day you may be running your own company!