TIPS FOR FILLING OUT APPLICATIONS FOR CURRENT STUDENTS
· Check all spelling and punctuation. (Have someone with good English skills proofread your application.) Proofreading is key! Proofreading multiple times is even better. This is important for all of your application, not just an essay or short response answer.
· Make copies of everything before sending (if paper) or save application to your computer (if online).
· Read each application carefully to see if you need letters of recommendation. If you do, ask any teachers (1-2 total) and see your counselor at least 3 weeks in advance.
· The College and Career Center Coordinators can help students complete applications. Stop in or call 612-668-3065 to arrange an appointment.
Set up a meeting with your counselor to go over your post-secondary plans (be sure to specify that you need a letter if you do, as your appointment will need to include a longer interview). In this meeting, you can request transcripts for each of the colleges you plan to apply to. You will need to do this at least three weeks in advance of your college deadlines. There is a $2 per transcript fee that can be paid at the time you request transcripts or later in your senior year.
College applications may include the following: the application and application fee, an official transcript, your ACT/SAT scores (sent by you from the testing agency), and any additional materials requested by the college, such as an essay or letter(s) of recommendation.
Do a careful, thorough job—your application represents you to the admissions officers.
If you have any questions about your applications, see your counselor or CCC coordinator.
Applications due January 1st must have transcript request into the counseling office in early December to ensure that they are mailed before winter break. See your handbook or counseling office for specific counseling office deadlines that correspond to your specific college deadlines.
The deadline for University of Minnesota Priority Admission is December 16, 2013.
Helpful Tips for the Common Application
For those who may not be familiar with the Common Application, it is a single application (available at www.commonapp.org) that is accepted by over 400 colleges and universities. The advantage of the Common Application is that students can fill out one application to apply to many different schools, saving valuable time during their senior year. It saves time for counselors and teachers, too!
Since a student may be applying to many schools using this one application, what can he or she do to make the application thorough, yet still allow his or her strengths to be apparent? Here are a few tips for students completing the Common Application:
Personal Statement or Essay
The people in college admissions offices appreciate the personal statement or essay because it’s a wonderful way to get to know the student—his or her interests, hopes, experiences, ideals-- that is much more personal than a test score or transcript. A great piece of advice for students who are searching for a personal statement topic: identify your passion and write about it. If the college lists specific essay prompts, be sure that your writing adequately addresses the specific questions posed to you.
It’s a good idea for students to ask a trusted friend or adult to read their personal statements; friends and adults can let them know whether or not their voices and personalities come through in their essays.
It’s helpful when students give details about their extracurricular activities, especially clubs that are not nationally known. Students can put together a resume or activities list to help organize their activities and communicate them clearly to college admissions offices.
A final tip: Students shouldn’t hesitate to call or e-mail the colleges if they have any questions. College Admissions Offices are pleased students are interested in applying and are more than happy to offer guidance throughout the application process.