Written by Ragini Dangwal, high impact counselor at University Connection
“Your future is in your hands”, a quote so often used by parents, teachers, and counselors, that applying to college almost becomes a nerve wracking process for students!
In the whirlwind of so many emotions during the entire applications and admissions journey, we sometimes forget about the little, but very important steps that help us get to the final destination. While these little steps can initially bore you, soon enough they begin to thrill you as well!
So, to make it easy, here are the top 5 things that you should know while working on your college applications:
1. Get someone to read your essays
You have filled in the complete application. Everything from your personal details to academic records is entered. Your teachers have uploaded the letters of recommendation. Your essays are almost done. Now, what next? Well, proofread. What are friends and family for? Ask someone, who you genuinely trust, to go through the entire application and especially read your essays. Do not paste any rough drafts on the portals until the spelling, grammar and punctuation are correct.
2. Check your emails regularly
Most of us have a bad habit of not checking or acknowledging emails. Did you know that most of your university-related emails sometimes land in your social and promotions tab? Not reading emails leads to missing opportunities to connect with your uni buddies, attending important virtual events and forgetting urgent deadlines. Say to yourself repeatedly- “You are your own master”. Even if you are seeking external help for college applications, don’t forget that it is YOU who has to go to college. So it’s important to be up to speed with the information universities are sharing with you.
3. Create post application logins
What happens once the application is submitted? The Office of Admissions finalizes its review of your application for admission and decisions get posted through your respective Applicant Portals. That makes it imperative for you to establish your portals by going to the link that universities provide you. Once you log into the portal, please note your password for future reference as you will need it when logging on to check your decision. This is a crucial step and cannot be missed at any point.
4. Don’t wait till the last minute
First things first, colleges will use your local time (IST) and not the time in X university that you are applying to. So do your math well! Secondly, most students have trouble submitting their application just hours before the deadline. Reason? Internet traffic! Yes, it’s a thing. Imagine thousands of students like yourself who decide to submit an application only at 12 AM? You must plan to press the button early. Technical glitches are not in your control, remember that. Moreover, what if a deadline falls on a Sunday and no one decides to pick your call or respond to your emails? Be alert.
5. Overthinking much? Well, don’t!
The complete applications and admissions process is a journey to self-reflect. All you need to take care of is bringing your authentic self to the table. Application decisions can be a gamble. There will be rejections and there will be acceptances. Remember that it’s an admission decision on your application, not a judgment on you. The odds will eventually connect you to the one university that you’ll enjoy attending. It’s not just about getting into only the “top” universities. It’s about finding the one where you will thrive beautifully.
Don’t ruin this important milestone by overthinking. Just take a chance and dive right in.