College application deadlines approach; time to get started!

Emma J Nelson, Editor-in-Chief

College application season has begun, and with COVID-19 in our midst, the process is looking quite strange. With state schools no longer requiring standardized testing scores and many colleges switching to entirely online applications, college application has never been easier! Or so one would think, if they weren’t actively applying to their dream school and wondering what to write now that the majority of our extracurriculars have been cancelled. Don’t worry, for we at The Wolf have insights to make your application process less stressful! 

  1. Don’t write about what you couldn’t do because of COVID-19. Write about what you’ve done despite COVID-19. It may seem tough, but colleges love to hear about how you’ve persevered and innovated to get past obstacles; letting them know that you have been a powerhouse throughout the pandemic is sure to catch the reader’s eye!
  2. Apply early if possible. Try to get your applications in before the due dates so they don’t look like they were written in a rush to meet a certain deadline. Starting earlier will give you more time to perfect your application rather than settling for what you have because you’ve run into the deadline.  
  3. When answering cliché questions about “how others view you,” consider going to a friend of yours and ask them to describe you, honestly, in a few words. Take their answer and interpret what those things mean about you.
  4. Really consider who should write your recommendation letters. You may get a good recommendation from a teacher that you’ve received good grades from, that’s true. However, you’re bound to get a great recommendation from the teacher that has seen you struggle in their class, but has also seen you improve as you consistently displayed effort. 
  5. Keep in contact with your counselors! They have a lot of seniors applying to college right now, so it’s important that they know where you personally are in the application process. Do they need to send in a transcript yet? To where? Don’t expect them to just do it without a request from you; it’s a collaborative effort! 
  6. Don’t type your essay answers directly into the application site; instead, write them on a separate Google Doc. Having a website crash on you without automatically saving your response is a terrible pain, and college application sites aren’t exactly known for reliable “automatic save” services. You could lose half of what you’ve written.

Everything seems scary right now, and going to college is going to be a giant transition for all of us, but by displaying effort, perseverance and innovation (alongside grammatically-correct sentences), you’re bound to end up with an application to be proud of. Good luck seniors and early graduates!