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.”
Much of the staff at Campus Bound has worked here for several years. It’s a fabulous place to work for many reasons, including: the collegiality among the staff, the guidance of the senior staff and supervisors, and, most importantly, the clients we serve. One of the great things about working at Campus Bound is the honor of being able to work with a family over several years. It’s one of the true joys of my job.
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!
What is Superscore?
Superscoring is a policy some schools have by which they will consider a student’s highest section scores from any test date of the same test. Many students take college admission tests more than once. If a college superscores, they will take the highest scores from Reading & Writing, and Math (from the SAT, for example) to calculate a new total score.
It’s no surprise that taking a year off between high school and college is a growing trend in America. The rising number of gap year programs and increase in information about taking a gap year are leading parents to ask the question, “Could a gap year program be right for my son or daughter?” The gap year trend has seen a 20 percent increase since 2006 and the initial data is coming back with overwhelmingly positive indications for student success in college. Yet, many parents are still hesitant and anxious about their student taking a year off. Being informed and seeking help from trusted professionals will help you will make the right decision about whether or not this rising trend is right for your child.
Many colleges ask students to write a supplemental essay with the prompt, “Why are you applying to Amazing University?” Chances are you will have to write one or more of these during the application rush. Easy, right? Not so fast! This essay can be one of the more challenging essays to do correctly. It requires careful reflection and should not be put off until the last minute.
“I don’t think I’ll get anything, is it even worth it?” I receive that question often this time of year. Financial aid applications have been compared to a root canal so it’s not exactly something one would choose to do unless it was going to have some benefit.
If you are a student who plays sports in high school, you may want to consider playing in college too. Talking with a high school coach, friends, family members, college athletes and college coaches can all help you decide if college sports may be right for you.
While the majority of the college admission world is focused on seniors right now, and understandably so, we don’t want juniors to feel that we forgot about them. There are important items on their to-do list right now as well. Below are 5 things juniors can be doing now to get a head start on the college application and admission process.