Top Five Things You Should Know About Applying to College


Adam Navarrojusino

  1. Fit is Everything

Finding a college that’s right for you is critical. The college search process takes time and if done right, years. By the time you are a junior in high school, you should have a shortlist of five to eight colleges you’re strongly considering. “Fit” in the college admission process means academic, testing, but also financial, extracurricular, and otherwise. College admission begins freshman year, and the sooner students begin to realize this, the more advantages they will have in the process. 


  1. Pay Attention to the Details

I have seen too many simple mistakes on college applications to know students need to slow down. Taking a moment to step back and carefully review your punctuation, spelling, and grammar can save you from “submission remorse.” Before submitting, print a copy of your application and discuss it with someone you trust. Other readers may catch errors you don’t because you’ve read your application more time than you can count. Paying close attention to the details will ensure success in applying to your dream school.


  1. Every College is Different

Not only is every college different, but every student is different. Colleges all have specific processes and procedures. Make sure you familiarize yourself with these differences as you prepare and create your applications. Even if you plan to major in the same subject at all colleges, requirements for the application process may and will differ. Do your research and stay focused.


  1. Apply Early

Let’s face it, the adage, “the early bird gets the worm,” holds even in college admission. In most cases, applying early may give some students an edge in the process. The fall semester gets busy quickly, and applying early gives students a chance to focus on researching scholarship opportunities in the winter and spring. In most cases, you will likely receive a decision early, allowing you to compare financial aid awards. Be warned; not all early programs are made equal. Know the admission plans and choose the one that best suits your needs.


  1. Enjoy the Journey

Have fun! College goes quickly, and if you don’t make the best of this journey, it could cost you thousands of dollars. Also, enjoy the time with your family and friends. Someone once told me that after high school, the years go by fast. Know what you want and go for it!


Keeping pace with the evolving landscape of higher education can be daunting. Utilizing the resources in the Weiss High School College and Career Center is a great way to move forward with your goals.