As the leaves begin their annual journey from green to the brilliant reds, oranges and yellows we are accostomed to in New England; high school seniors are beginning their own journey.
Seniors across the country are working hard to balance their time between collge applications, visits and interviews; all while doing AP level homework, playing varsity sports, joining clubs and engaging in social activities.
Although this is an incredibly exciting time of their lives, it can be an anxiety provoking one. "Will I get into my first choice? Are my grades, SAT, ACT scores good enough? What about my extracurriculars? Did I get involved in enough activities to be a 'well-rounded student'? What if I don't get in? What if I don't get enough financial aid?" Each of these questions add another layer of stress for both the student and their parents/guardians.
As parents/guardians, it is your job to guide and support your young person through this process...
Have your student make a list of colleges they want to apply to and review it with them for realistic "reach schools" and "safety schools".
If you, as the parent, are limiting the number of school they can apply too, ensure your student is choosing the best schools for them.
school as their desired program of study
distance from home/access
Pick an essay prompt, common application, that makes the most sense to them- not the one that your student thinks admissions counselors will like the most.
Write the first draft of the essay without edits.
Review the first draft with a tutor or your HS college counselor- then edit and polish it.
Submit all materials at least two days in advance of the due date leaving a window for any unforseen issues that could arise.
Ensure that your young person has enough breaks and downtime to balance out their workload.
Discuss their expectations and how to manage disappointments.
Support them through any disappointments and encourage them not to give up!