4 College Prep Activities You Must Make Time For

Picture this: You wake up in the morning bright and early, 6 am. Get dressed, drive to school, go to school, do a make up test that you missed when you were out sick, run to the locker room, go to practice, drive home, take a five minutes shower, get back in the car—Oh wait you forgot dinner—go through the McDonalds drive through, eat at your volunteer meeting, drive home, do homework, and finally hit the sack at 1 am.

Phew—I’m exhausted just writing that. Sound familiar? For many of you, this is your high school life.

Oh wait, but I forgot to mention researching, touring, and applying to college—yeah, just those little things.

College prep, from the time that you log onto that first .edu site, to when you get your keys to your dorm room, comes right in between one the busiest times in your life so far.

Before you rush through these college necessities, just to check them off your to-do list, pause, take a deep breath, and give adequate time to these important steps.

Don’t Rush:

Making your college tour list: College tours are time consuming and can take weeks of planning. However, a common mistake (I know because I did it) is to go on Collegeboard.com, pick three college that look okay, tour them, and choose one. Obviously, it is impossible to tour every college out there, but it’s important to make a list of at least ten to go to. Start touring early, junior year, so you have plenty of time. Give yourself tons of options, at a variety of different schools, and don’t be left in the dark about choices you could have had.

Your application: It’s easy to lose interest in college applications. You can only write your name and address so many times before you start to forget what you’re writing. But this is where a problem can occur. If you rush through applications just to get them done, you may misspell a word, or check off the wrong box. Careless application mistakes look unprofessional and could result in your application being voided if the information isn’t correct.

Your essay: Imagine that you are a college admissions officer. You read thousands of essays, and they all sound the same. They go on and on about what a diverse person the applicant is, and how much they want to work hard and have a career, etc. After a while, as you can imagine, it becomes hard for them to believe your authenticity. Take the time to think of a creative essay, how to get the real you across, and proofread meticulously.

Decorating your dorm room: On a lighter note, decorating your dorm room is similar to decorating your first apartment. It should be fun, thoughtful, and since it’s your house for the next year, something you enjoy being in. Don’t rush to Bed Bath & Beyond and throw in as many towels and pillows as you can, just to get the job done. Plan out, with your roommate, what you both like, and shop around for fun furniture, posters, and other décor.

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Lisa Manente

Lisa Manente

Lisa Manente is a senior at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT. She will be graduating with the BA in Media Studies and Communications in May. Editing the Entertainment section for her university’s newspaper and magazine has fueled her passion for entertainment journalism, which is the career path she plans to explore. In her free time she enjoys reading, traveling, listening to music, and catching up on celebrity gossip.