Monday, September 12, 2016

{A Guide To} Applying to College

Tis the season of college applications! I'm here to share with all of you all of the things I wish I had known while applying to schools. I'm very satisfied with my college choice as of now and completely feel made the right decision, but if I could go back in the process I would definitely do a couple of things differently. 

1. Apply to more schools than you think
I'm not saying apply to 13 schools if you're dead set on one, but applying to more schools has its benefits. For me, it was applying to 8-9 schools. I had my heart set on one particular school, but also wanted to keep my options open. Throughout the entire college process I was extremely indecisive about what exactly I wanted in a school and where I wanted to attend school geographically. I always had my heart set on going to school in California so I opted to apply to 5 schools in California and 4 schools elsewhere. Of these other four 2 were in the midwest, 1 was in the south and 1 was on the east coast. I regret not applying to more schools on the east coast, just because for a while I strongly considered going to school there. The list of schools I applied to is as follows:

UCLA
UC Santa Barbara
UC San Diego
Loyola Marymount University
Chapman University
University of Missouri
University of Alabama
Lehigh University
Miami University

If you're borderline about applying to a school I say just go for it. I actually didn't apply to LMU originally, but then ended up applying last minute. Who would have guessed it's where I ended up going to school!

2. Start & apply early
It was very helpful taking a college English class at my high school because it forced me to begin writing my college essays early. You're going to have a lot of essays to write so it's best to pace yourself and begin the process early. I'm sure many of you that are applying to school this year have already begun your college applications, but if you haven't it's not too early to get started! I also highly recommend applying early action to as many schools as possible. This is an awesome option because it is non-binding, but you find out your admission decision earlier and are often considered for more scholarships than if you were to apply regular decision.

3. Find your space
College applications were very independent for me and I didn't want my friends to interfere with my focus. Don't get me wrong I love studying with friends, but when it comes to my future of the next four years I like to take something like this very seriously. I opted to go to Starbuck's often and work in a productive space. This got me out of my house and let me focus in a new environment.

4. Trust the process
There's only so much you can do while applying. You have full control over the essay you write and any other supplements, but when it comes to determining if you actually get in...sorry, but you're out of luck. Many schools look at applicants holistically meaning they look at more than just your GPA and test scores. This includes extracurriculars and your personal statement. Let the college decide if it's right for you.

I hope these tips helped! Are you applying to school this year?

Xoxo

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