November 1 is right around the corner. And, the rest of the college deadlines will come fast and furiously after that. But before you hit that SUBMIT button, here are a few things to keep in mind:
1. Have at least one adult review your application
A fresh set of eyes can make a big difference, especially when it’s a college counselor. We can check for mistakes, let you know any ways you can enhance your application, and read over your essay. A parent, teacher or other trusted adult can also look over your application. Don’t send it in without a thorough review.
2. Waive and release
Before you submit your application, you will likely be asked to sign a FERPA release. This makes your teacher and counselor recommendations “official” because you are waiving your right to see them. It’s important to do this.
3. Check with your recommenders
It makes sense to double-check with your recommenders before you submit your application. It’s easier for colleges if teacher and counselor recs are available the same time your application is.
4. Send official testing scores
It’s not enough to list your SAT or ACT scores on the application itself. Most colleges want you to send official scores directly from the College Board or ACT organization. Technically, this doesn’t have to be done before you submit, but why wait? Avoid the late fees and send your scores as soon as you know which scores you want to send and which schools you will be applying to.
5. Dot your I’s and cross your T’s
At the end, you will be required to sign and pay for your application. Walk through all the steps carefully to make sure your application is fully submitted. Also, it makes sense to print out your application “receipt” for your records.
6. Don’t wait until the last minute
Deadlines tend to fall right alongside major holidays… Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukah, etc. So, waiting until the last minute can effect family time and fun around the holidays. Also, there are occasional glitches. Colleges have done everything they possibly can to alleviate some of the potential problems, but you never know. So, waiting until the last minute can be a major setback. Our advice is to apply at least two days before the deadline, if not sooner.
After you submit, you can take a deep sigh of relief and either wait for the news, or keep working on college applications with later deadlines. Fingers crossed!