7 Tips for Seniors Going Through the College Apps Process


Avery Deen

Submit your letter of recommendation request forms early as possible and add details of something the teacher might write about.

Avery Deen, Reporter

  1. Start your essays early. As soon as you’ve decided you want to apply to a school, look at what essays they require and what the prompts are. You’ll want a lot of time to draft and edit your piece before submitting it.
  2. Get your essay edited by at at least two people. I suggest at least one friend and one teacher. You reread your essay so many times you stop being able to see the flaws in it. Ask them to check it over and catch what you can’t, and ask them to give feedback on how well you respond to the prompt and how well the essay sells you. You are not trying to sell your dream trip to London, you’re trying to sell yourself.
  3. In your spare time start filling out the demographic information. Instead of napping during DEN, take the 20 minutes to fill out the couple pages of demographic information all apps require. Later when you have your essay, scores and everything else ready to go, you’ll be a bit annoyed you have to go through those formalities if you haven’t already completed them.
  4. Request your transcript from Parchment. Make sure everything is set with your counselor before you submit the request. You want them to see that you’re on track to graduate, not that you still owe 15 credit hours from last spring.
  5. Consider what teachers have seen you grow the most when considering who to ask for recommendation letters. They may not necessarily be your favorite teacher, but who has seen you struggle and fail, and rise up to meet the challenge. They will have an easier time writing about your good qualities than the teacher whose class you just breezed through.
  6. Request to teachers writing recommendation letters to highlight a certain trait. Maybe it’s something you didn’t get to mention in your essay, maybe you have to have three letters and don’t want them all to be the same. Not all teachers will take the request, but if you ask it may help not only shift the letter in that direction, but start making them think of moments when you showed those traits.
  7. Don’t stress. I know there’s a lot of anxiety surrounding the application process, but really you’re going to be fine. You’ll either get into your dream school, or you won’t. The world won’t end, you’ll go somewhere else that you’ll probably love, and you will enjoy college all the same.