You work your way through the grind of early high school. You take your required math, english, science, and history courses. A foreign language course may be required, may not be. Finally, it’s junior year or senior year, and you have fulfilled the graduation requirements and can just sit back and take electives now, right?! Not so fast. In this blog post we explain why all the “fun” options for junior and senior year courses are really an easy trap to fall into if you’re looking at selective colleges and can hurt your chances of being admitted.
At Campus Bound, we typically don’t advise students to focus on specific colleges until junior year of high school. We provide more information about that in this recent blog post. However, some eager sophomores may want to get a jump start on certain things, including the college recruitment process for student athletes. In this blog post, we explain why an early start is helpful and the tasks that can get done now to ease the process down the road.
You’re walking through the hall when you overhear a group of seniors talking about where they’re going next year. And at soccer practice, your junior friends are talking about the colleges they are visiting next month. It reminds us of a fun quote: “college is the reward for surviving high school.” Yes, you too will be researching and visiting colleges, but you’ve been told it’s not your time yet. There’s good reason for that, as we will explain below. However, there ARE things you can do now to make the college process easier later, and increase your chances of being accepted. Read on!
Taking a gap year before college is something every high school student should at least consider. Even if it’s quickly dismissed as not the right path for you, it makes sense to have a discussion with your Campus Bound counselor about what it is as well as the pros and cons. We have explained more previously in this blog post. In this blog, we will go over the different types of gap year programs, and if you are considering it, how to decide which might be best for you.
Many eager juniors are kicking off the college process by taking an official SAT or ACT. Before you do, however, we offer some important and practical advice to consider.
It will be here before you know it; you will be handed a booklet, or given a website to view, and told to pick your courses for next year. This can cause the common “deer in the headlights” look. How do you even begin? In this previous blog, we outlined some common questions that students have when selecting their courses for the following year so be sure to read that, but in this blog, we will give step-by-step directions for how to make the best decisions about course selection for you.
It’s counter-intuitive, but parents who take a step back from their child’s college admissions process may actually hear more. It can be very hard advice to follow; we get it, but stick with us on this.
When I’ve asked groups of juniors and seniors what their parents can do to help them with the college process, their response is almost always… stop asking me about the college process. A student once told me, “I just want to have one dinner with my family where college isn’t brought up.”
From time to time, we like to utilize the well over 50 years of combined college admissions experience of the Campus Bound staff to provide students and parents with some inside scoop. These counselors have been on the other side of the desk, so their advice is priceless.
This time, we asked our former College Admission Counselors, “If a student has less than stellar grades, how can they enhance their application in other ways?”
Here are their responses.:
Unfortunately, this happens quite a bit: we’ll have our first meeting with student and then they say the words we dislike hearing, “I wish I had known that…”
We wish the college process wasn’t confusing or difficult, but the truth is, it can be. Here are some of the most common scenarios, by school year, in which we hear students say “I wish I knew that!” Pay attention… don’t let it be you!
Leadership is the action of leading others. When underclass high school students ask me the ways in which they can make their college application stronger, one consistent piece of advice I offer is to display leadership.