I can’t even express how happy I am that college application season is completely and absolutely over. It was definitely the most stressful experience of my life. But although I may have felt a little lost and confused sometimes, I eventually figured stuff out. Here are the things I wish I knew sooner.
It’s okay to feel clueless
It’s okay to start off feeling like you don’t know what you’re doing. By the middle of junior year, a lot of my classmates seemed to have lists of schools already, while I hadn’t even heard of the majority of the colleges that everyone was talking about. If you feel similarly, don’t worry! That’s what research is for. You can be just as informed as everyone else if you just look up a little bit of information.
And don’t let your lack of knowledge about specific schools make you think you can’t get into them. What matters are your grades and extracurriculars, not your extensive knowledge about every university in the country.
Don’t base your opinion of a school on stereotypes you may have heard. And just because someone tells you that they didn’t like a certain college, doesn’t mean that you won’t like it. Do your own investigation and form your own thoughts. I loved plenty of schools that my best friends hated.
If you keep an open mind, you just might find your dream school. You never know.
First semester senior year definitely matters
When first semester rolls around, you feel close to the end. But don’t let that make you less motivated. It’s crunch time.
This part of your high school career can definitely impact your transcript if you need it to. If there was ever a time to give schoolwork your all, it’s now. Remember to prioritize grades over college essays. If your GPA could use a little boost, use this semester to make that happen.
Everything is going to be okay
No matter what, you will be okay. Even if things don’t go exactly as you want them to, nothing so terrible will happen. Not getting into your dream school isn’t the end of the world (even though it may feel like it for a little while).
Stay calm. Your mental and physical health are infinitely more important than your academic performance. Don’t let your fear of failure get too out of control.
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About Nadira Berman
As a Summer Marketing Intern, Nadira is excited to help high schoolers prepare for the SAT and ACT. As a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania, she is considering studying economics. In her free time, she reports for the school newspaper and styles photo shoots for the school's fashion magazine. Besides fashion and journalism, her passions include bagels, smoothies and Netflix.
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