Using Summer to Prepare College Applications

Wading through college application season is a stressful task for even the brightest, best prepared students. So how can your student mitigate the pressures of applying to college? For starters, students should use the summer to get a valuable head start on college applications. With that in mind, here a few ways for students to use their summertime to maximum benefit before the time comes to complete the stack of applications that await.  

· Create a detailed game plan.

Students can avoid getting overwhelmed by creating an explicit road map for college application season. Creating a calendar of important dates and deadlines, along with a corresponding checklist for each college or university’s required documents are helpful ways to streamline the application process and remove some of the anxiety from the equation. The summer gap is also an excellent time for students to connect with those they’ll be asking for letters of recommendation, providing plenty of time to tailor their letters accordingly.

· Deepen your research.

The relaxed pace of summer gives students a chance to dive into the details of the universities to which they plan to apply. A student can improve his or her odds of admittance by getting to know admission statistics made public by potential universities, which can add an edge to the application process. For instance, applicants are often grouped by geography, and certain areas may require a higher GPA to stand apart from the pack. Likewise, students who plan ahead during the summer months can determine whether applying Early Action can increase their chances. Research can also relate to scholarships, too. Direct your student to spend a lazy summer afternoon digging around for scholarships or grants that can make a difference in your bottom line when it comes time to attend university. 

· Focus on the essay section. 

The essay portion of college applications often intimidates student, who are insecure about their writing skills, or apprehensive about which topics to tackle.  That’s why it is so important that students plan ahead when it comes to college essays. The first order of business should be to zero in on a specific topic. It’s well known that subject matter which a student cares about will be far easier to write about at length, than a subject they don’t like. Students should dig into their activities, personal history, or interests to uncover and write about a lesson learned, a goal fought for, or an opinion to argue. Colleges are in search for specifics, and students can start by focusing on the details, rather than writing about broad concepts or qualities that don’t demonstrate individuality. 

Making the most of summer can give students a hearty advantage in the application process—including greater preparedness, a longer window to edit personal essays, and plenty of time to secure a letter of recommendation ahead of time from a favorite teacher. As a full-service tutoring and test prep services company, we understand the ins and outs of the college application process and can offer students comprehensive help on all aspects of academic

preparedness, standardized test prep, and skill building. Contact us today to help your student can get the head start that he or she needs to stand out this application cycle.