Applying to College

Report
Applying to College
Anna Batie, Program Associate for Outreach
September 2014
About Us
 The Washington Student Achievement Council is a cabinet-level state agency that provides
strategic planning, oversight, and advocacy to support increased student success and
higher levels of educational attainment in Washington.
 The 12th Year Campaign is an agency initiative that combines the national College
Application Campaign and College Goal Washington. The campaign’s goal is to raise the
number of students, particularly those from low-income or underrepresented populations,
who successfully complete college applications and apply for financial aid.
Agenda
Parts of a
College
Application
What
Admissions
Officers Look For
College
Application
Timeline
Resources
Two-Year vs. Four-Year Applications
Two-Year College (Open Admissions)
Four-Year College (Selective Admissions)
 Personal Information
 Personal Information
 Transcript
 Transcript
 Financial Aid Information
 Letter of Recommendation
 COMPASS/Accuplacer placement test
 Standardized Test Scores
 Program-specific prerequisites
 Financial Aid Information
 Resume of Activities
 Essay and Short Answer Questions
 Ask someone who knows you well.
 Ex. Teacher, counselor, pastor, employer
Letters of
Recommendation
 How long has this person known you? In what
capacity?
 Don’t ask a family member
 Ask the writer at least one month before your
application is due.
Letters of recommendation provide
evidence that you are a good
candidate for admission from the
perspective of someone who knows
you well.
 Provide them with your essay and student activities
list or resume.
 Ask one academic and one character
recommendation (say, a teacher and a coach or
employer).
 Provide them with the required forms and a
stamped and addressed envelope.
 Don’t forget to send a thank you card!
 Possible activities include:
 Clubs
 Sports
Resume of Activities
 Jobs
 Student government
 Community service
 Religious involvement (youth groups, etc.)
Most colleges will ask you to include a
resume of activities as part of the
application. Some colleges and
universities will ask you to write about
every activity you took part in, while
others will ask you to write about 3-5
significant activities.
 Arts or music
 Describe:
 The impact the activity had on you.
 Any leadership roles.
 Length of time you participated.
Application Essay
The goal of the essay is to demonstrate
your fit with the college or university,
and to address things that maybe
were unable to be addressed in other
parts of the application.
 Discuss how your family’s experience or cultural
history enriched you or presented you with
opportunities or challenges in pursuing your
educational goals.
 Tell us a story from your life, describing an
experience that either demonstrates your
character or helped to shape it.
 Why do you feel that Seattle University is a good
match with your educational goals?
Agenda
Parts of a
College
Application
What
Admissions
Officers Look For
College
Application
Timeline
Resources
What Admissions Officers Look For
Academic rigor, quality of senior year
courses, and grade trends.
Extracurricular activities.
Comprehensive
Application Review
Ability to enhance the diversity of the
university.
Academic performance relative to
opportunity. Did you take advantage
opportunities available to you?
Show What You’ve Learned
Fit
Reflection
Writing
• Diversity
• Interest
• Community involvement
• Evidence of past and future academic performance
• Ability to grow and learn from challenges
• Evidence of critical thinking
• Tone
• Use of appropriate examples
• Organization and focus
• Ability to follow directions
Agenda
Parts of a
College
Application
What
Admissions
Officers Look For
College
Application
Timeline
Resources
September
September
October
November
December
January
February
March
 Figure out which colleges are the “right fit” for you.
 Make your reach/target/safety list. Plan on applying to 3-6 colleges.
 Identify references for letters of recommendation.
 Create a calendar of application deadlines.
April
May
June
Finding the Right Fit
 Size
 Location
 Type of College
 Program of Study
 Student Services
 Student Life
 Personal Values
Reach, Target, Safety
Reach
• Academically
challenging--you may
not quite fit the
college’s academic
profile.
• Selective admissions.
• Potentially high cost of
attendance.
Target
• You are likely to be
admitted based on
your academic profile.
• You would be happy
attending that college.
• Would not be financially
overwhelming to
attend.
Safety
• You are almost certain
to be admitted.
• You would be happy
and get a good
education there.
• Affordable with
reasonable effort.
October
October
November
December
January
February
March
 Draft your admissions essays.
 Talk with your English teacher or counselor about your essays.
 Request your official high school transcripts.
 Take the SAT or ACT and have test scores sent to colleges.
April
May
June
November
November
December
January
February
March
 Finish application essays.
 Visit campuses of the colleges you’re interested in.
 Attend a College Application Campaign event.
 NACAC College Fair
 Seattle Oct 31 and Nov 1
 Portland Nov 2 and 3
 Spokane Nov 5
April
May
June
December
December
January
February
March
April
May
June
 Be aware of admissions deadlines for your schools of choice—December brings early
admission application deadlines and some regular admissions deadlines, too.
 Attend financial aid workshops and begin preparing the documents you’ll need to file
your FAFSA or WASFA.
January and February
January
February
March
April
May
 Complete the FAFSA or WASFA.
 Attend a College Goal Washington event.
 Complete college and scholarship applications.
 Keep your grades up!
June
March and April
March
April
May
June
 Update your FAFSA after your parents file their taxes.
 Review acceptance letters and financial aid awards.
 Decide which college you will be attending.
 Send in any required materials to the college you’ve chosen.
May and June
May
June
 May 1: National Candidates Reply Date
 Send thank you notes to teachers, counselors, and references who helped you.
 Request that your final transcript be sent to your college of choice.
 Be aware of college deadlines for housing, deposits, orientation, and registration.
 Congratulations on your graduation!
Agenda
Parts of a
College
Application
What
Admissions
Officers Look For
College
Application
Timeline
Resources
Test and Application Fee Waivers
 ACT: http://www.actstudent.org/faq/feewaiver.html
 SAT (the College Board): http://sat.collegeboard.org/register/sat-fee-waivers
 National Association for College Admission Counseling:
www.nacacnet.org/studentinfo/feewaiver/pages/default.aspx
 High school guidance counselors
Web Resources
 Ready Set Grad: www.readysetgrad.org/
 College Cost Navigator: www.collegecost.ed.gov/
 Big Future: www.bigfuture.collegeboard.org/college-search
 Community and Technical Colleges of Washington State: www.checkoutacollege.com/

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