Spring is finally here! Which means, for better or worse, so are the last of the college application deadlines. Given the unprecedented amount of energy that you’ve surely been putting into the process – you are probably not too keen on thinking about the new work that lies ahead.
And that’s perfectly okay.
But for those of you who’d like a sense of how to spend the next few weeks, here are some suggestions.
You owe it to yourself (and to your mental and physical health) to take a much-deserved break. How long you should de-stress is, of course, a completely subjective opinion – but ensure that it’s enough time to catch up on some of that sleep you’ve been missing. Finishing this at-times-awful, marathon-like journey is a triumph that’s worthy of large self-reward. Eat chocolate, watch Netflix, go out – whatever it takes to restore yourself. As far as you have come in your senior year, there is still a whole second half to push through. And the senioritis is about to get real. Big time.
2. Give your thanks
If you have yet to give that teacher who wrote you a letter of recommendation a thank you card or gift then you really, really ought to get on that. They too struggled through their fair share of late nights, trying to make you look good. The least you can do is show your appreciation.
3. Update your resume
With all of your accolades fresh in mind, now can be the ideal time to either make or revamp your resume. If you think about it, creating resume after resume is kind of what you’ve been doing this entire time – only in the format of an online application. All you’ve got to do now is restructure your information onto a clean, one-page Word doc. Resumes can be crucial now that summer is (oh so slowly) approaching. Almost every employer will ask for one, and the sooner you can have one on hand, the better.
4. Consider summer plans
A resume, of course, doesn’t matter so much if you know you have 0 desire to work out after school’s out. Or if you know you’ll be traveling all summer. Those months after senior year are a weird mixture of things: wanting to savor your hometown, wanting to prep for dorm life, wanting to enjoy new memories with old friends, wanting to make money before entering the great big world. These all aren’t mutually exclusive – but some do require more forethought than others.
Particularly with summer jobs, prioritizing your options can be a great place to start. Even better is to glance over their respective applications. What information do they ask for? Who are they looking to hire? How early can you reach out to them? As graduation nears, you’ll find that most people in your class are chasing after the same kinds of positions, so an early game plan can really come in handy.
6. Begin scholarship applications
I can feel your scowl through the computer screen. More essays. More forms. More letters of recommendation. Who in their right mind would want that?
Well… someone who doesn’t want to pay all of their insanely high tuition cost …
Plus, you’re likely going to find that a lot of scholarships don’t even open until February and March (which is a very generous thing). Still, there are some that will be due in January – or even December. To prevent missing what could be the perfect scholarship for you, start sifting through possibilities now. Excel sheets can be a perfect way to organize preliminary details: deadlines, dollar winnings, etc.
It’s free money that somebody has to be awarded – why not you?
7. Enjoy your high school experience
The number one thing not to do is freak out about admissions. At this point, it’s all out of your hands. You could waste days agonizing over your chances, his chances, her chances, everybody’s chances. But it’ll get you nowhere. In the very least, push off that anxiety until late April, and use this time to bask in the joy of those around you. You’ve probably realized at this point that high school goes fast. Don’t let a moment slip through your fingers.
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About Elise Gout
Elise writes articles for the Magoosh SAT blog to help teenagers during an exciting time in their lives. Despite residing in Southern California, where she attends San Dieguito Academy high school, she has no surfing abilities whatsoever; it’s actually rather sad. She is your typical senior high school girl who sword fights daily, and is pretty much convinced that bananas are a food sent from heaven. Elise will attend Columbia University next fall to study environmental science.
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